Just love the Coromandel so we couldn't resist coming back for another visit. Earlier in the year we based ourselves in Coromandel Town on the west side, this time we stayed at Simpsons Beach just north of Whitianga on the east coast. My plan, with such close proximity to the beach was to get up early most days and catch the sun rising. This area has received more rain in the last few months than the locals can remember happening in decades and, unfortunately, it decided to carry on for most of our time there. On the plus side it did mean lots of times when I didn't get out of bed before the sun came over the horizon ;-)
Before we got to Whitianga we decided to have a few days in Thames so that we could go back to the fantastic Cafe Melbourne for lunch.......absolutely stunning organic food full of flavour :-). This time around we managed to find a disused wharf which made for a great photographic subject.
The whole area of Whitianga has amazing coastline. There are the obvious spots of Cathedral Cove and Hot Water Beach, but, these are a little too popular for my tastes. When the weather did eventually give us a few days break it was time to go exploring which led us to the coastal road up and over the hill from Whitianga along to Opito Bay. Just locals, the sea and scenery......bliss.
From Whitianga it was time to make our way down to Waihi for a couple of weeks. We had been through the area a couple of times when we stayed at Paeroa earlier in the year and commented then that it looked like a nice town. From the experience we had I can confirm it really is a gem of a place with very friendly locals and the excellent Waihi Beach not far away. Plenty of walking to be had through the gorge, along the coastal cliffs and through the town taking in the various heritage sites of interest. If you are after some fresh local produce then a trip to the Sunday Market at Waihi Beach should be on the agenda.....do try the venison salami, wow!
It is a shame the weather while in the Coromandel didn't play nicer for us, but, it is time to move on and make our way down the east coast to be in Napier for Christmas.....the adventure continues, next stop Matata.