The Coromandel, New Zealand

The Coromandel Peninsula is a pretty famous part of North Island so we took the drive to check it out. We arrived at the infamous Hot Water Beach at around low tide so we knew we were there at the right time to experience this freaky phenomenon.

Basically the sand and the water coming up through the sand is SUPER hot, so people like to take a spade, did a hole and hang out in it until the tide comes in. It’s a bit like a DIY temporary hot tub on the beach. We parked wherever we could find and at first we’re convinced we had gone to the wrong place. There was no one to be seen except a few stragglers with spades over their shoulders. Then we saw it. A little ants nest of swim wear clad humans lying in home made pools. The geothermal area is small ish, so everyone crams in close. There’s just one area that’s kept clear, and the soles of my feet quickly discovered why. I laughed at the ‘very hot water’ sign seeing as the water was warm at the most before I decided to place my feet on the empty section which was a couple of metres long and wide. Imagine putting your feet directly into lava- it was basically that. People were boiling eggs in a little pit they had dug it was so hot. I couldn’t believe it!


Generally the weather was grumpy and overcast so instead of digging our own pool and lying half naked with some strangers, we had a nose around before hitting the beach cafe. We treated ourselves to a lovely cafe lunch, and although the lady initially tried to kill me by not including celery on the ingredients list of the salad, I was soon presented with a gorgeous veggie frittata and we shared some very decadent cheese cake whilst watching the people poaching themselves on the beach. People’s bums and legs were literally bright red from the hot water- mad!

The Coromandel has some very pretty beaches including the famous Cathedral Cove which is featured in the Narnia films. Cathedral Cove is named this way due to the large altar-shaped carved section of rock which people love to pose under. We didn’t make it round the Cove as we didn’t have time to hike before sun down and the water taxi had already finished for he Day, but the other beaches nearby gave a good sample of what the area has to offer and some lovely photo opportunities.

The best bit for us was our super cute cabin located at Hot Water Beach which was a bit like a tipi meets yurt meets sauna. It was lovely and cosy and the camp site was amazingly located next to the beach. It had lovely amenities including a little shop where we could buy some avocados for dinner and frankly, the only bad thing was having to put your coat on to nip to the loo block. Such a cute place to stay!