Peter and Karen West have owned a bach in Waihi Beach for 13 years and have recently become permanent residents.

The couple, both aged 53, lived on a farm in Ngatea and holidayed at Waihi Beach before deciding to sell both the farm and bach to buy a beachfront property.

Places such as Mount Maunganui and Papamoa were "full", he said.

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"With the beach, fishing and the harbour, it is a magical place."

The Wests moved to Waihi Beach to be a part of the community they had holidayed in for more than a decade. "There is a real community feel," he said.

Long-time resident Don Fraser moved to Waihi Beach 18 years ago for the atmosphere and had noticed its growing popularity, with houses selling fast.

There were many attractions to living at Waihi Beach, Fraser said.

"Waihi Beach has still got that village atmosphere, it is a community," he said. "There isn't a whole lot of traffic ... and everybody says hello. There is 9km of white sandy beach and the fishing is still pretty good."