Many beautiful beaches and landmarks are nearby making Te Puia a great base to explore from. The kilometres of coastline in the Coromandel region feature some of New Zealand’s best beaches for swimming, surfing, water activities or simply enjoying the scenery. With around 400kms of coastline and over 100 offshore islands, the Coromandel is one of New Zealand’s favourite marine playgrounds. Within 15 minutes drive you can visit, Cooks Beach, Purangi Estuary, Shakespeare’s Cliff, Flaxmill Bay, Front Beach and Ferry Landing. Heading south you will find Sailor’s Grave, Tairua and Pauanui. Or head north to enjoy Coroglen, Whitianga, Simpson’s Beach, Kuaotunu, Otama, Opito, Whangapoua and New Chums and Coromandel town.
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 ‘must see’ destinations, Cathedral Cove. 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 Lees road or shuttle from the carpark at the entrance of Hahei village. Hahei Beach is also excellent for swimming and family fun. Diving, snorkelling/kayak gear hire and guided tours, water taxi and scenic boat tours are also available.
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, restaurants and bars:
- HOT WAVES CAFE 8 Pye Place, Hot Water Beach
Hot Waves is a licensed 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 CAFE 895 State Highway 25, Whenuakite
Colenso is an iconic country licensed café and gift shop set in a relaxing country environment with seating amongst mandarin orchards and herb gardens.
- 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.
- EGGSENTRIC CAFE 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.
- BLUE GINGER 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.
- LUKE’S KITCHEN 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.
- 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.
There are a whole bunch of boat tours and water activities in our local area. The following are our top picks. Obviously all water activities are dependant on sea and weather conditions, so make sure you plan ahead to avoid disappointment.
- GLASS BOTTOM BOAT
The Glass Bottom Boat allows you to see many beautiful landmarks only accessible by sea while it’s under water windows let you enjoy the abundant sea life of our local marine reserve. We thoroughly recommend this trip as the best way to check out our spectacular marine reserve, short of getting in the water. We also loved the captain’s entertaining commentary about our area’s rich history, and the geographical and marine features. Departs from Whitianga wharf.
- HAHEI EXPLORER
The Hahei Explorer is the original Cathedral Cove boat tour to Hahei’s marine reserve, stunning volcanic coastline and magnificent sea caves. The tour is unique because you get to see all the highlights of this amazing coastline in one hour. They take only ten passengers per boat, departing right off the beach at Hahei. Voted the number one water activity in NZ on the AA 101 must dos.
- CATHEDRAL COVE DIVE & SNORKEL
Cathedral Cove Dive is locally owned and operated by a well trained and friendly team with unmatched knowledge of the marine area. They have top quality aqualung scuba gear for sale or hire. Being situated right at Hahei, many of their dive sites are only a 10 minute boat ride away with the option of diving inside or outside the marine reserve.
- CATHEDRAL COVE KAYAK TOURS
Experience our amazing coastline in the best possible way – up close and personal in a modern sea kayak. Cathedral Cove Kayak Tours depart from Hahei Beach using modern kayaking equipment with qualified guides to give you full instruction and assistance. The range of tours are designed for all levels and abilities with no experience necessary.
- CATHEDRAL COVE WATER TAXI
For a bit of fun and a lot less walking, catch the water taxi to Cathedral Cove.
Pick-up & drop-off every 30 minutes from Hahei or Cathedral Cove. No bookings needed – just wait on the beach by the yellow/black flag.