Retro cars have taken over Waihi streets as Beach Hop 2018 gets underway.

A large fleet of classic cars and hot rods opened the annual event, parading up and down the town's main street yesterday morning.

The Kirk family from Tauranga arrived in their bright yellow school bus, a 1948 Ford, which has been part of the Beach Hop for the last two years. This year was the first they had attended day one of the event in Waihi.

"With the kids and grandkids, the space inside is ideal for us," Mr Kirk said.


The vehicle has undergone extensive modification to make it look as it is, boasting parts from New Zealand and the United States.

"It is a combination of three vehicles," he said.

"The back of it is an old school bus from New Zealand, it has been shortened and lowered."

A modern chassis was also added and the front was imported from the US.

Mr Kirk and his wife Michelle will now follow the hundreds of other classic vehicles and Hot Rods to Whangamata.

Dressed in their pin-up dresses, Tauranga friends Liz Staples and Val Pointon could not miss the day.

"We come up every year, my husband is a big fan of classic cars," Pointon said.

She previously joined the registered fleet of cars with her former Mustang, but not this year.

Coming from Te Awamutu, Murray Peterson is showcasing his recently purchased 1956 Chevy pickup, called M8TR.

The Chevy fan has been part of the event for many years, owning two more classics in that brand.

He said he would not miss the start of Beach Hop.

"Waihi is always a good day and we always try to be here at the party."

The rock'n'roll festival is carrying on every day to Sunday in Whangamata.