Hot Water Beach
The beach was called Te Puia by the local Maori because of the natural mineral hot springs that are exposed on the beach at low tide. This unique feature on our beautiful ocean beach attracts visitors from all around the world. Pick your spot at low tide and after a bit of digging with a spade you will have your very own hot spa pool on the beach.
If you prefer more action the beach is a great surf spot. Lifeguards patrol the water during the summer season. There is also diving, fishing and excellent bush walks throughout the local area. For your dining out pleasure beautifully tranquil Hot Waves Café is within walking distance.
Hot Water Beach is a location steeped with New Zealand history. It has one of the earliest known Maori pa (fortified village) sites that was the home of the Ngati Hei tribe. Projects are currently underway to restore the native bush and forest of these sites by locals and Ngati Hei.
Food & Dining
If you’re eating in you can get general supplies from Hot Water Beach Top 10 Holiday Park or from Hahei General Store. The nearest major supermarkets are at Whitianga.
If you would rather have somebody else do the cooking, here are our picks of the local cafes, restuarants and bars:
Hot Waves Café
Hot Waves is a licenced café and gallery only a short walk from Te Puia Lodge (heading left out the driveway). They have the best coffee in Hot Water Beach! The Cafe is built in earth brick and is nestled in an amazing native garden.
Open daily 8.30am – 4.00pm
Colenso Country Café
895 State Highway 25, Whenuakite
Colenso is an iconic country licensed cafe and gift shop set in a relaxing country environment with seating amongst mandarin orchards and herb gardens.
Coromandel Brewing Co – The Pour House
7 Grange Road, Hahei
A beautifully crafted little brewery bar with a uniquely Coromandel flavour. Bar and eatery with the option to view the brewer at work and chat with him if he is free! These beers are only available in the Coromandel, you will not find them anywhere else!
Hahei Beach Cafe
3 Grange Road, Hahei
Situated in the heart of Hahei, we invite you to enjoy our simple, tasty food and great coffee – all served in a relaxed atmosphere by our friendly staff.
Hot Water Beach Brewing Co
1043 State Highway 25, Whenuakite
Coromandel’s newest craft brewery & brassiere has opened its doors and put some stunning brews on the menu. Come and try the beer matched delicious food on offer.
The Church Restaurant
87 Beach Road, Hahei
The Church Restaurant is housed in the original church building from the early 1900’s. Specialising in Mediterranean style tapas, and boasting an exceptional wine list, it is a truly memorable dining experience.
1049 Purangi Road, Flaxmill Bay
Experience the taste and feel of the Coromandel with live music, poetry, films, local and national musicians, Irish nights, art exhibitions, sculpture garden etc. Licensed and BYOW. Also Eggsentric Xtras our ‘Really Good Food Store’. A Deli with fresh fish, meats, vegetables, charcuterie, cheeses, local produce and much more.
The Coroglen Tavern
1937 Tairua Whitianga Road, Coroglen
Located in the beautiful rural town of Coroglen on the Coromandel Peninsula. An iconic Kiwi Pub known for their lovable local rouges and stonking summer band lineups. Join them for a brew, a chompin’ burger and a bit of cheeky banter.
Whitianga & Beyond
The French Fig
41 Albert St, Whitianga
Gorgeous food prepared with love and attention to detail. Consistently excellent coffee and great ambience.
20 Victoria St, Whitianga
Cafe Nina a relaxed and funky Cafe. We serve fabulous Ozone coffee and our food is cooked fresh to order. Open for breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and we are a Licensed Cafe.
1/10 Blacksmith Lane, Whitianga
Evening dining, asian grocery & deli items,
fresh sushi, noodle boxes, hand blended teas, coffee and smoothies for takeaway, frozen gourmet meals, picnic hamper & provedore services.
Salt Restaurant & Bar
1 Blacksmith Lane, Whitianga
Positioned right on the water’s edge overlooking Whitianga Marina, Salt Bar and Restaurant is open for lunch and dinner.
The House of Chang Thai
3/33 Albert Street, Whitianga
At The House of Chang Thai all our dishes are authentic Thai dishes made with your choice of heat. Dine in or takeaway menu. BYO is welcome.
20 Black Jack Road, Kuaotunu
Fresh tasty homemade wood fired pizzas, wraps and snacks in a relaxed laid back atmosphere. We often host impromptu live music from the locals. See the events pages for our summer scheduled gigs.
Purangi Winery, Vineyard & Pizza
450 Purangi Road, Cooks Beach
For something a bit different check out the Purangi Winery, a rustic vineyard that produces fruit wines produced from organically grown fruits and herbs.
Mercury Bay Estate
761A Purangi Rd, Cooks Beach
Overlooking the vineyard and the sparkling waters of the Mercury Bay, Mercury Bay Estate’s cellar door offers wine tastings in a picturesque setting. Relax and enjoy a taste of wine with a delicious platter of local food matched to Mercury Bay Estate wines.
The kilometres of coastline in the Coromandel region feature some of New Zealand’s best beaches for swimming, surfing, water activities and setting out to enjoy the sun and scenery. With around 400km’s of coastline and over 100 offshore islands, the Coromandel is one of New Zealand’s favourite marine playgrounds. It boasts some of the New Zealand’s best quality fishing within a relatively small area.
Beaches / Water Activities
Cathedral Cove & Hahei
For a great day trip that is only a 5 minute drive don’t miss Hahei and Cathedral Cove. From the stunning lookout above Hahei or using the track from the northern end of Hahei Beach, a scenic walk takes you to one of New Zealand’s best kept secrets – now made famous by the film Prince Caspian. The 2 hour return walk also gives access to Gemstone Bay, Stoney Bay and Mare’s Leg, all part of the Te Whanganui-a-Hei Marine Reserve. Park at the western end of Hahei Beach or take Grange Road (left past shops) to the lookout carpark (limited parking).
Hahei Beach is also great for swimming and family fun. Diving, snorkelling/kayak gear hire and guided tours, water taxi and scenic boat tours are also available.
Local Beaches & Rivers
Cooks Beach and Purangi Reserve are just a short drive away. And heading south you will find Sailor’s Grave, Tairua and Pauanui. Or further north Waiwawa Reserve at Coroglen, 309 Water Hole, Whitianga, Simpson’s Beach, Kuaotunu, Otama, Opito, Whangapoua and New Chum.
We thoroughly recommend the Glass Bottom Boat as the best way to check out our spectacular coastline. The captain provides entertaining commentary about our area’s rich history, and the geographical and marine features. The boat allows you to see many beautiful landmarks only accessible by sea while the it’s windows let you enjoy the abundant sea life of our local marine reserve.
Other water activities in the area include:
Cathedral Cove Dive & Snorkel
Cathedral Cove Kayak Tours
Cathedral Cove Water Taxi
Ocean Leopard Tour
Walks and Tracks
The Coromandel is a walker’s dream – with a centre dominated by a range of jagged mountains and its fringes scattered with picturesque coves and beaches. The mountains are remnant of the Coromandel’s volcanic past and are largely covered in regenerating native bush recovering from the pioneering past. Many of the walks in the area are steeped in gold mining and kauri logging history. From short walks nearby to day trips in northern Coromandel or an overnight stay at the Pinnacles hut. The Coromandel has something for everyone!
Northern Coromandel Walkway
The stunning walkway is from Fletcher Bay to Stony Bay located at the very top of the peninsula. The walk provides great views of the coastline and offshore islands (Great Barrier Island, Cuvier, Mercury Islands, etc.). Visitors have the option of doing the walk return (6- 8 hours walking time) or joining an organised tour, who collect visitors from Coromandel Town, drop them at Fletcher Bay and pick them up at Stony Bay and return them to Coromandel Town. This is an excellent way to experience the rugged beauty of Northern Coromandel!
Kauri Grove Walk
8km along the 309 Road from Coromandel you will find parking space on the right side of the road. The walk is on the left side of the road. These Kauri trees have been protected over a hundred years and are truly magnificent. The track is well formed with footbridges and boardwalks, an excellent easy walk for tree lovers taking only 10-15 minutes.
New Chum Beach
Hidden away from the masses and the intrepid traveller will find ‘New Chum Beach’, voted as one of the world’s top 10 beaches. New Chum beach embodies ‘The Coromandel good for your soul’ This protected beach has no buildings, no roads, no infrastructure or camping – it is a jewel in New Zealand’s coastal crown.
From the north end of Whangapoua beach, cross the stream to begin your walk along the rocky shoreline and over the headland. The 1km long Wainuiototo Bay, or New Chums Beach, is approximately 30-40 mins walk via the Mangakahia Dr track over the saddle through spectacular nikau forest and huge Pohutukawa.
There is a public toilet at William Mangakahia Lagoon Reserve.
There is a staunch following with local’s and visitors alike keen to see the beach remain as it is forever. Find out more at www.preservenewchum.org.nz
Other Local Activities
Make sure you take time out to wander over to Moko Artspace at Hot Water Beach, which houses contemporary New Zealand art and object, glassware, jewellery, sculpture, painting, prints and designware.
Cathedral Cove Macadamias
Take in the beautiful surroundings as you walk around the orchard of Macadamia, New Zealand Native & Fruit trees. Visit the orchard shop to purchase a range of macadamia products and seasonal produce. Or take a guided tour, followed by sampling the range of macadamia products.
Ride through picturesque landscape from Rangihau Ranch following some of the old pack-horse tracks of the 1800’s. The guided trail rides of 1–2 hours take you through native bush and across open pastures into the rugged Coromandel Ranges to take in stunning views. The team of 30 well-conditioned trekking horses suit all ages, size and experience of riders. Young children are well catered for with small lead-rein ponies available. The ranch is located at Coroglen – 5 minutes along Rangihau Road, off State Highway 25 (opposite the Gumtown Hall).
Coroglen Farmer’s Market
Local produce and crafts at Coroglen Gumtown Hall. The market is held on Sunday mornings from 9.30am – 1pm (between Labour weekend in October and Queen’s Birthday weekend in June).
Whiti Farm Park
Close encounters of the animal kind! Feed and interact with friendly farmyard and other exotic animals. Unique machinery and games are dotted around to inspire, intrigue and educate. An affordable, fun filled, day out for ALL the family. Picnic, play, explore and enjoy.
Fun Zone Paintball & Adventure Family Park
If you are seeking an action packed holiday, try paintball set in beautiful native bush near Whitianga. They have two fantastic paintball fields plus archery for beginners, paintball/air rifle target shooting and kids quad bike rides.
Whitianga Bike Park
Whitianga Bike Park offers about 3 hours riding at various grades. There is a BMX track, a PUMP track, a DIRT track and a Skill Zone, plus a BBQ picnic area. Whether you are there for mountain biking or walking there are trails to explore. Half day and full day rides. All free to use.
You can get a copy of the Whitianga Bike Club trail guide from the Whitianga Information Centre.
Take the Ferry
Drive to nearby Ferry Landing and catch the ferry for a short but picturesque cruise to the other side – Whitianga! Whitianga is a well-equipped beach town with shops, a cinema, lots of cafes and restaurants to choose from and a whole raft of activities and fun for the family. Passenger ferry only (no cars).
Ferry Timetable: 7:30am – 7:30pm
Birdwood Springs Mini-Putt
With 18 challenging holes Birdwood Springs provides fun and recreation for all the family. The theme of the park is based on a series of popular childrens books, the latest being ‘Kee-Wee Saves Birdwood Springs’.
Nearby Purangi Golf Course offers 9 holes. Also on the Peninsula are Mercury Bay Golf Course, 18 holes and Lakes Resort Golf Course in Pauanui, also 18 holes.
Mercury Bay Museum
A perfect rainy day activity for the kids! The museum houses exhibits about the Polynesian navigator Kupe, Maori Artifacts, the Endeavour and James Cook, HMS Buffalo (sunk 1840), Kauri Timber and Kauri Gum, the old Dairy Factory in which the Museum is housed, early settlers records and photographic collection, Natural History displays and the History of Fishing display.
The Lost Spring
Experience the magic of Whitianga’s luxury Day Spa and Geo-Thermal Pools. Nestled in the heart of Whitianga, the pools of the Lost Spring are surrounded by tropical and native bush. Relax in the pools and be waited on by friendly staff. Let The Lost Spring Day Spa pamper you with massages and treatments in luxurious tree-top therapy rooms. Cafe/restaurant on site. 14 year olds and over only.
Showcasing the best of quirky Kiwi ingenuity – there is nothing like this in New Zealand or the world! Liquid fun for the whole family! Visit the beautiful gardens full of 70+ quaint and quirky contraptions created by Chris. A unique experience where you can laugh and play with interactive toys made with all sorts of everyday items. There is a café, picnic areas and free gas BBQ’s. Situated near the Coromandel Town end of the 309 Road. Open 9-5 all year, later during summer.
With its relaxed, laid-back lifestyle, Coromandel Town attracts talented artists and craftspeople from around the country – inspired not only by the tranquil atmosphere, but also by the spectacular natural surrounds. The discovery of gold at Driving Creek in 1852 brought a boom to Coromandel Town, and the area has continued to flourish while retaining much of its history from those times.
Driving Creek Railway and Potteries
A truly unique destination with a one hour train ride taking you through dense replanted Kauri forest on NZ’s only narrow gauge railway. You will find artistic surprises on the way and get superb views from the Eye-full Tower. Pottery and sculpture for sale. Magnificent engineering, unique art and great family fun! Trains run daily at 10am and 2pm with many extra trains over summer and on holidays. Bookings are advisable.