Friday, October 26, 2007

The Coromandel Run

Coromadel Town to Waihi
Distance: 153 kilometers

We completed our tour of the Coromandel Peninsula today. We saw some pretty spectacular scenery. In addition to beautiful beaches and high mountains, the Coromandel Peninsula has some rich history in gold mining, kauri logging and gumdigging.
Our day started in Coromandel Town with Chris behind the wheel. He guided us over the mountains and down the twisting roads to the east coast. Our goal was to hike to Cathedral Cove. We figured that it would be important to get some exercise each day since we are now spending time off the bikes for the next two weeks.
The view from the car park was jaw dropping. The limestone cliffs rise up out of the crystal blue waters in both directions. It was definitely “all that and a bag of chips”. We quickly got our things together and started along the walking path. We hiked just above the cliffs for most of the way with great views of the islands just off the coast. The area is part of the sixth largest marine reserve in New Zealand. The cove is a giant limestone archway that connects two beaches. The photo opportunities were great and we spent the better part of an hour walking around taking in the views.
Lunch was served as a reward after the trek back to the campervan. Chris fixed up the leftover smoked mussels and marlin with crackers and cheese. Yesterday we stopped by the popular Coromandel Smoking Company to sample the local seafood. We sat and chatted about how Cathedral Cove ranked on our list. We all decided it was pretty darn high.
Leslie drove the second shift to Waihi and decided that it is just as hard to drive the hilly, twisting roads as it is to ride them.
The “Wiki Bus” moves on to Turangi tomorrow. Stay tuned.

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