Coromandel Discovery Day Trip: The Coromandel Coastal Walkway. Following the recommendation of a friend, this seemed like a good way to walk a scenic track only once - they drop you off at one end and pick you up at the other. As we were staying in Whitianga, we drove across to the rendezvous point in Coromandel town to meet the minibus. Guide and driver Barbara was brilliant: she offered information and insights on the landscape and the environment as she drove along. This was an early point in our NZ trip so the orientation she provided on conservation work (which we later revisited in other places) was really of value. She is also great fun and has loads of stories - this is not a lecture tour! The winding and steep gravel roads are of course interesting (!!) although we were completely confident of our driver and vehicle.
The walk was great, we loved it. Many birds presented themselves including gannet, NZ kingfisher, tui, bellbird. It was our good fortune to be there on a beautiful sunny day in spring, with blue and turquoise all around us in the sea and the sky. And it was quiet as well, a bonus. Reaching Stony Bay was rewarded with home made cake and tea/coffee magicked up by Barbara.
Well worth our organised and early start from Whitianga, we still had time for a proper evening back there, which would definitely not have been the case under our own steam (diesel, actually) with twice the 3-4 hour walk and driving speeds in the hired vehicle lowered by our unfamiliarity! A terrific day, highly recommended.
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