The Coromandel Peninsula on the east coast of the North Island is one of New Zealand’s best kept secrets. While the area gets a few international tourists (usually backpackers and motorhome renters), mostly it’s locals and New Zealand holiday makers. The area offers an incredible diversity of things to do and see. You can travel right around most the peninsula by the coastal roads and venture down some of the dead ends to reach some real out of the way little beaches and communities. The East Coast of the Coromandel is a beach lovers paradise. White sand, great surf and swimming can be found the entire length of the coast. Check Whangamata for surfing, Tairua for swimming as well as the beaches further north -Kauotunu through to Opito Bay.
If you want to catch some serious fish then look no further than Carl Muir Fishing. Carl is a legend on the east coast based in Tairua. He specializes in Kingfish but there’s plenty of bottom fishing and game fishing to be had with him too. You state what you want and if anyone is going to get it for you on the Coromandel it’s Carl. On the west coast of the peninsula there are several operators that take fishermen out the mussel farms. Great snapper and kingfish action to be had there.
The coast is all great diving and there is plenty of opportunities to dive from shore. For offshore take a look at the Alderman Islands – one of the country’s best dive sites. Further north the Mercury Islands offer great diving too and plenty of scallops. Try Dive Zone Whitianga for more information on their dives and locations.
Where to Stay
Every town and beach along the coast of the Coromandel has a range of options from reasonably priced motels to AIRBnBs, B&Bs and great campgrounds.
Visit Coromandel town and Driving Creek Railway, check out the old gold mines and history in Thames, walk into Cathedral Cove at Hahei, dig a hot spa in the sand at Hot Water Beach, or visit the isolated New Chums Beach.