Coromandel Travel and History Information
Coromandel Peninsula, noted for its arts n crafts and located just over an hours drive from Auckland, offers an excellent diversity of tourism activities.
Its breath taking scenery, magnificient bays and beaches, game fishing and swimming with dolphins, attract travelers worldwide.
From the gold mining town of Thames, the highway winds for just over 50 km up the Peninsula’s west coast, to the charming town of Coromandel, with its fine colonial and Victorian buildings.
The road to Cape Colville runs past the oyster farms of Long Bay, and a succession of tree lined bays facing islands
A little further south, from the picturesque village of Tapu (which to the Maori means sacred or forbidden) a scenic road strikes up a valley, straddling the range at an elevation of about 2,000 feet, and so to Coroglen, a farming settlement near the east coast, and thence to Whitianga on Mercury Bay.
A little back in the hills is a plaque stating: "The first gold found in New Zealand was discovered in this area by Mr Charles Ring in 1852."
This is Captain Cook country. Near Cook's Beach, on a hill overlooking Mercury Bay, is a cairn with a plaque: "In this bay was anchored 5-15 Nov. 1769 HMS Endeavour Lieutenant James Cook R.N., commander.
He observed the transit of Mercury & named this bay." A little further north is Whitianga, meaning "the crossing", said to have been occupied by the Maori 1,000 years ago.
Whitianga was once famous for kauri timber, but is now more noted as a base for deep-sea angling and home to the Mercury Bay Boating Club, which triumphed in the America’s Cup in 1995.
Fishing is excellent here and being a major source of crayfish and scallops, the seafood is of very high quality.
A passenger ferry crosses over to the historic stone wharf of “Ferry Landing”, built in 1837, and then onto Cooks beach and Hahei, renouned for its diving at the stunning “Cathedral Cove”.
Further South of Cathedral Cove, hot springs can be accessed at Hot Water Beach.
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Coromandel Travel Information