After reluctantly waving goodbye to The Bay of Islands, we had three beautiful nights in the Coromandel.
Both days were jam packed with trying to explore as much as possible of this incredible stretch of coastline in a wonderfully dramatic region.
Read my blog on our first few days in New Zealand here.
We started our day with a sea kayak!
Rich booked for my parents and I to have a guided tour with Cathedral Cove kayak tours so to learn more about the history of the area, and how and when people migrated to New Zealand— meanwhile he went for a run having kayaked this stretch of coastline a few times before.
The trip took us along from Harhei beach, Gemstone beach, Stingray bay, Cathedral cove, and to Cooks Beach.
The sea was quite choppy due to a lot of swell from the recent weather, and embarrassingly I got sea sick and chundered…
I felt super bad for our guide who I was sharing a kayak with! He was super nice about it but I doubt he wanted to see me vom over his kayak! I felt much better after and was able to continue to enjoy the beautiful scenery. #keepingitreal.
We finished the trip with a cuppa tea and some cookies and then were swiftly off on our next adventure.
As Cathedral Cove has been on my to do list since we first booked the holiday in 2019 (thanks to covid we rebooked the trip last year) I’ve been super excited to see it. So after the kayak trip, we also took a walk to it!
It was about an 1hr 30 return trip for walking, but we did stay at the cove MUCH longer as we also enjoyed a particularly scenic swim here.
If you’re a fan of Narnia, this is where the kids arrive in the second film — sadly we didn’t arrive in Narnia after walking through the cove.
I was a little sad that the track to the cove was tarmaced as for me that takes away the enjoyment of a walk slightly, however I believe that due to the mass of people who visit it on a daily basis it is better for reducing land erosion. And it makes the route more accessible. Admittedly, it did make walking up the hill slightly easier too!!
After a full body work out day, we had a fairly chilled evening and put a load of washing on and popped into the village for dinner at the Beach Club restaurant. The food was DELISH and fuelled us for the giggle fits we had afterwards laughing at my Mum being unable to read a dessert menu properly (sorry Mum!).
Hot Water Beach:
If you go here, be careful you don’t burn your toes! Any guesses on how I learnt that lesson?
The next morning we got up pretty swiftly for another busy day and started with trying to find the hot springs on Hot Water Beach.
It took quite a bit of digging in various places to find the hot water springs, but eventually… someone gave us their hole.
It’s quite bizarre to find such hot water without actually having to dig too deep. In places, the beach was steaming! I couldn’t believe how hot it was: I won’t lie, my toes were red and sore for a little while after stepping in a particularly hot pool. I really like a hot bath, but this pool was a new level of hot.
After all the digging and burning of toes, we cooled off with a sea swim. The sea was so lovely and warm here, roughly 20 degrees.
On route to our next stop, we took a walk through the bush to see some Kauai Trees. There’s a lot of die back at the moment so we had to clean our shoes at a cleaning station. It’s nice to see how proactive New Zealand are into protecting their native plants without closing areas off.
We then took a different trail and took a short walk to Waiau Falls, which we had completely to ourselves. I couldn’t not take this opportunity to have a fresh water swim and so I very quickly got into my swimmers and had the waterfall to myself and played in the water for 15 mins.
I then sent the family off to meet them at the car so I could quickly get changed without doing the awkward hiding behind a towel dance routine. I then spotted a couple of girls above the waterfall taking selfies from above— I really hope my bare bottom isn’t out in the background of any of their photos haha!
The Driving Creek was quite a drive away, but totally worth the visit. It is an old small wheeled railway which was used for gathering clay. It was self-built by a railway enthusiast and offers some fantastic views across the Coromandel.
It was about an hour and a half trip that zig zagged up a steep hill with the driver filling us in on the history of the track as well as making train noises through the tunnels.
New Chums Beach:
I told you it was a busy day!
We also took a 3km walk that included a water crossing, scrambling over rocks, and attempting to stay upright on a muddy trail to the beautiful golden sandy beach of New Chums that is only accessible by foot or boat.
It is a super isolated beach which meant we pretty much had it to ourselves.
On the way back to our accommodation we stopped by the infamous Luke’s Kitchen for a woodfire pizza. DELISH! I think this pizza has converted me into likening olives on a pizza.
The drive home was beautiful! I’ve never seen a night sky so clear: I kept ‘wowing’ in amazement of how clear the sky was and how many stars I could see. We got home 10pm ish and crashed in our beds pretty swiftly!
Thanks for reading. I do hope you’re enjoying reading these New Zealand blogs as much as I’m enjoying living it and writing it.
Next on the blog will be our day in Hobbinton! Spoiler alert: it was amazing!
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- A night away in PlymouthA fun night away in Plymouth with Will featuring; a sea swim, bouldering, and drinks at Plymouth gin distillery
- Why I write a blogComing back to the blog, and starting off by talking about WHY I blog (when I get time!!!)
- Wellington, New ZealandThe final stop of the trip: Wellington, New Zealand.