Hot Water Beach & Cathedral Cove

Hot Water Beach & Cathedral Cove

1 overnight stop with Kiwi Experience (January 2016)


If you are heading off to explore the North island of New Zealand, A day trip to visit Hot Water beach and cathedral Cove is a must do bucket list item for the majority of people leaving Auckland heading south. Visiting the famous Coromandel is absolutely worth it!

Hot water Beach is a famous spot for picking up a spade and digging your own thermal pool out the sand. Only available to do two hours either side of low tide, the stunning beach is well worth the experience!

Only 5 minutes drive away is the breath taking cathedral cove walk. The stunning trail takes around an hour each way, however it is well worth it. Beware the trek is downhill to reach the cove and uphill on the return, so wear some trains or enclosed footwear. This popular track hugs the coast, providing dramatic views of spectacular coastal scenery along its length, finishing at the beach beneath an impressive rock archway. You’ll want to remember to bring your camera for this one!

How long to stay in the area?

I would say you only need one night. Arrive by lunch time, Spend the rest of the day enjoying these two sights, get some rest and move on the next day.


The Kiwi Experience bus tour guarantees your first night’s accommodation, therefore the camping grounds we stayed at were pre-booked for us. Facilities were fab and clean, however the beds were uncomfortable. It was fine for one night, however you would have got bored if staying any longer, so I was glad to leave the next day.

My Experience:

Departing Auckland at 9am, The Kiwi Experience bus started the drive south for our destination. We arrived shortly after lunch time to check into the camping grounds, and after checking in we all jumped back on the bus which dropped us off at the start of the cathedral cove trail.  It is quite a walk so definitely wear trainers!  We had a few hours to enjoy the walk there and back,  and spend some time down on the beach.  By the time we arrived back at the accommodation it was late afternoon, and everyone decided to head around the corner to hot water beach, where the group spent some time digging out our own little hot pools! We all headed back to the camping ground and chalets just before dark, where there was a large kitchen on-site for everyone to cook dinner. The majority of people stayed up late getting to know the new faces on the bus, and some decided to get an early night before heading off to Waitomo tomorrow.

I would definitely recommend adding this day trip to your itinerary. If you are tight on time you could leave after hot water beach and head straight to Waitomo so when you wake up the next day you can head straight to the famous glow-worm caves. However if not, I recommend staying here for the night and heading off to Waitomo tomorrow morning. After relaxing in your hot pool no doubt you will be sleepy 🙂

Next Stop – Waitomo!

-TheSloanranger x

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