King Tide Centre
King Tide overview
King tides occur when the Earth, Moon and Sun are aligned at perigee (Moon closet to earth) and perihelion (Sun closet to earth), resulting in the largest tidal range seen over the course of a lunar month or year. Local severe weather events with low air pressure and strong winds can also enhance the high tide height causing coastal inundation, erosion and transport disruption around the gulf, harbours and inlets.
King Tide monthly peak report
King Tide historical events
Next red alert King high tides
28th September to 3 October 2023
King Tide Monthly Peak updated 21st September, 2023
Sea level data produced by LINZ for Waitemata harbour, Auckland and Korotiti Bay, Great Barrier Island dates back to the installation in June 2014. The yellow line in the graph are high tide peaks of each month, with the yellow dotted line displaying the time period's linear trend. The tide height is the raw mean sea level measured in metres using a pressure sensor.
Waitemata Harbour's highest tide for August 2023 was a mean level of 1.57m at 10:26pm on 5 August. Currently there is a downward trend of peak high tide levels for Waitemata harbour for the last 10 years and 3 months.
Great Barrier Island's highest tide for August 2023 was a mean level of 1.11m at 5:56pm on 2 August. Currently there is a upward trend of peak high tide levels for Great Barrier Island for the last 10 years and 3 months.
King Tide Historical Events
These are the top 10 historical raw mean sea level peaks dating back to 1903 in the Waitemata harbour, Auckland
(Historical data source : NIWA / Auckland City Council / LINZ)
23rd Jan 2011
26th Mar 1936
14th Jul 1995
4th Feb 1904
7th Mar 1954
14th Jul 1956
5th Jan 2018
14th Feb 1918
20th Jun 1947
11th Jul 1926
1936 Saw 2 major ex-tropical cyclones pound the shores around the Hauraki Gulf. The first storm was on hit the Hauraki Gulf on the morning 2nd February 1936, causing extensive damage. A 2nd storm arrived 26th March 1936 which conincided with a King Tide and the highest recorded sea level of the 20th century.
Photo:Milford beach, 26th March 1936
(archive takapuna lib T 0356)
Noted as the the worst flood in the history of the Hauraki Plains with the sea level peak measured at 3.0m on the Thames vcoast . Heavy rain and northerly winds combined on 4 May 1938 coinciding with a king tide around 10pm breaking the stop-banks at Pipiroa and Hopai. In Thames, the water inundated the Grahamstown end of town, the Park Hotel had four feet of water and debris, with a car parked outside was submerged to the roof.
Photo:The Pipiroa Store,5th May 1938
(Sir George Grey Special Collections, Ak Libraries)
2011 Deep low
On 23 January 2011, Coastal sea inundation affected several parts of Auckland including Queen Street, Tamaki Drive, the northwest motorway, Herald Island, Maraetai and Miranda. The Port of Auckland measured their highest ever mean sea level of 2.38m. A low-pressure system coincided with a very high king tide which caused considerable damage.
Photo: SH16 Auckland NW motorway city-bound buslane, Sun 23 Jan 2011.
(Photo courtesy of Peter Mitchell)
On 5 January 2018, a subtropical storm coincided with a king tide causing extensive damage to low lying areas and roads around the Firth of Thames with storm tide inundation around Auckland. Barometric pressure dropped to 987 hPa, with the recorded the sea level at Thames of 2.8 m, which is the 2nd highest ever level recorded behind the 1938 storm event of 3.0 m.