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With 30,000ha of native rainforest, mountains and rugged coastal beaches, there’s got to be something here for everyone at this vast National Park.
Renowned for its rhododendron collection, Pukeiti is a 360 ha rainforest property located between Mount Taranaki and the coast, just south of New Plymouth.
Explore the stunning coastline and lush native forest around the magnificent Pelorous Sound and bring your togs, as the Pelorous River is great for swimming on a smoking hot summer’s day.
Parakiwai Valley, Whangamata – This is another classic Coromandel spot, with old gold mine sites, a stunning waterfall and swimming holes. You follow the old lower dam tram track through a 20m tunnel to get there, but the going’s not too hard.
If you’ve got a head for heights, this is a climber’s Mecca. And don’t worry if that sounds dizzying, it’s still a beautiful spot from ground level.
Puwheke Beach, Karikari Peninsula– With its white sand and gorgeous views across Doubtless Bay, Puwheke Beach is a divine beach hangout. Take a picnic and relax on the sand, or enjoy yourself swimming, fishing and bird watching.
Marlborough’s spectacular eastern coastline, with its rugged mountains and the wild Cloudy Bay coastline, is well worth exploring, and this historic road from Picton is a great way to do it!
Take time to smell the roses, and rhododendrons, and lots more, at this charming garden area.
Piha Beach – The surf’s nearly always up at Piha, so don’t forget your board when you visit here. Piha is one of Auckland’s most loved beaches, and it’s easy to see why - black volcanic sand and rolling breakers give it a wild windswept beauty.
Pack your picnic and your togs, and head to Elaine Bay for this lovely (and reasonably short) walking track in the beautiful Marlborough Sounds.