Blustery winds are expected up and down the country and people in particular areas are being told to stay alert, as winds may become more severe.

The MetService has issued a number of strong wind watches for places both in the North Island and South Island.

"A front is forecast to move northeast across New Zealand [today], preceded by a period of strong west to northwesterly winds and followed by a change to strong and cold southwesterlies.

"People are advised to keep up-to-date with the latest forecasts in case any updates are made."

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The Coromandel Peninsula, Bay of Plenty west of Papamoa, Waikato, Waitomo and Taranaki north of the mountain all have a strong wind watch from 3pm today until 9pm.

"Southwest winds may approach severe gale in exposed places during this time," the weather authority says.

Westerly winds may change to become more squally southwesterly winds in the Hawke's Bay, Tararua District and Wairarapa. The watch is effective from 9am to 9pm.

Although there is no official warning or wind watch in place for Auckland, MetService meteorologist Philippa Murdoch says it is still expected to be a windy day in the City of Sails.

Winds are expected to peak this afternoon; with wind speeds of between 45km/h to 65km.

"There is a low risk of thunderstorms in Auckland this afternoon," Murdoch said.

Those could also bring strong gusts to parts of the city. Showers are also forecast, particularly by this afternoon and early evening. A high of 15C and overnight low of 10C is forecast.

That comes after wind speeds reached up to 40km/h in Auckland overnight.

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Murdoch said its station at Auckland Airport recorded about 40km/h at its peak about 3am.

Northern, central and southern fire communications all reported a mostly quiet night, however, with no weather-related call-outs.

There are also strong wind watches for Nelson west of Motueka (from 6am to 3pm) and coastal Dunedin, coastal Clutha, coastal Southland and Stewart Island. That watch, however is set to lift at 9am.

The coldest populated place to be today will be in Invercargill, which has a high of 10C.

Murdoch said temperature highs are expected to stay on the chilly side everywhere.

The North Island can expect significant highs around the mid-teens, while the South Island will get low to mid-teen temperatures.

The wind watches come after a sudden weather change over the Hawke's Bay yesterday - bringing hail, lightning and heavy rain yesterday afternoon.

Napier was pelted with hail and photos shared on social media showed streets covered in a dusting of white.

Emergency services reported being called out to flooding incidents and to another incident where a ceiling had collapsed in on a Napier building.