Coromandel Beach

by Kshaunish Jaini

The land down under of New Zealand is a curiosity in itself. Located in the southwestern Pacific Ocean, about 1500 kilometers from the eastern coast of Australia, New Zealand is a melting pot of incredibly diverse cultures, apart from being one of the most visually awe-inspiring places on the face of the earth. In many cases, New Zealand feels like it’s a fantasy land out of this world, which is perhaps the reason why much of the Lord of the Rings franchise of films was shot here. New Zealand is a collection of more than 600 islands, formed due to volcanic activity many millennia ago. The Polynesians settled here in the 13th Century CE, developing a distinct Maori culture. New Zealand was later colonized by the British in the 19th Century, and acquire freedom in 1907. Its capital city is Wellington, while its most populous city and economic hub is Auckland.

While many regions around New Zealand are a paradise for explorers, the western peninsula of Coromandel is especially a treat for beachbums. The Coromandel Peninsula is located in the North Island of New Zealand, and enjoys a pristine coastline which extends for more than 150 kilometers into the aptly named Bay of Plenty. The peninsula is steep and hilly, occupied by the Coromandel ranges, which extend to 900 meters above the sea level. Although quite proximate to the city of Auckland, Coromandel is quite sparsely populated - a world in itself. As a result, it has become extremely popular as a tourist hub, with industries like ecotourism and underwater adventure blooming in this region. Coromandel is also one of the most beautiful places in all of New Zealand, offering an incredible natural diversity - from dense tropical forests to coral reefs - in close proximity to each other. The peninsula’s waters are a treat to scuba divers , who can explore the underwater world in all its incredible diversity. Dolphins and whales are often spotted off the coast, and New Zealand leads efforts into conserving and preserving the population of these majestic creatures. Coromandel is also well known for the Cathedral cove - a natural limestone arch in the middle of the sea more recognizable from its images than its name. The beaches of Coromandel are some of the best in the world, with stark white sands contrasting the bright blue seawater. There are so many beaches to choose from during your stay in Coromandel, that it is better to get to know a few of them better beforehand. Here are some of the best Coromandel beaches on offer.

Coromandel New Chums Beach

New Chums Beach, one of the most famous Coromandel Beaches in New Zealand

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Beaches of Coromandel

Hot Water Beach

Located in the Mercury Bay on the east coast of the Coromandel, the Hot Water beach is an iconic place in New Zealand. Its name comes from the underground hot water springs that filter up through the sand between high and low tides. The water from the springs can reach temperatures up to 64 degrees Celsius. During high tide, you get a natural jacuzzi experience, with cold water from the atlantic above and the hot water from the springs below.

Whangamata Beach

One of the best beaches in the world for surfing, the Whangamata’s left hand break is legendary among the surfing community. Other activities that you can partake in at Whangamata include kayaking, and Stand Up Paddle boarding. Whangamata is also a great Coromandel beach just to relax and have a casual swim, with a laidback vibe and plenty of watering holes around due to its proximity to the city.

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Coromandel Beach cave

Cathedral Cove

Another iconic spot in New Zealand is the Cathedral Cove. The overbearing limestone arch of the Cathedral Cove is submerged into the sea, accessible only by boat and by foot during low tide. Its one of New Zealand’s best photo-op sites, apart from being featured as a backdrop in many Hollywood films like The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian. This Coromandel beach overlooking Cathedral Cove is a great spot to unwind under the shade of this majestic natural monument.

New Chum Beach

A regular fixture of the world’s best beaches lists, New Chum beach is a long stretch of pristine golden sand that meets the Pacific Ocean in a dramatic contrast of colors. Separated from the Whangapoua beach by a lagoon, the New Chum beach is not as easier to access, but it’s worth the effort once you get there. Those who do, are rewarded with giant swells for surfing and exotic underwater life to explore via snorkelling.

Waihi Beach

Waihi beach is often known as the gateway to Coromandel and the Bay of Plenty. A 9 kilometer stretch of golden white sand, the Waihi beach is one of New Zealand’s safest surfing spots. You can also rent a bicycle and ride along the waves at this exotic stretch of paradise. Waihi is also famous for its boutique shops, flea markets and fine dining.  

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