The Coromandel is where Kiwis holiday. Handily located, easily navigated, and bursting with amazing scenery and fun family activities, it’s so easy to have a memorable and relaxed family holiday here.
You will instantly feel that lovely holiday vibe with the relaxed and easy pace in The Coromandel, combined with the big outdoors and free or cost-effective activities that are just perfect for families.
There is such a huge variety so we’ve picked our top 10 – which is top of your list?
Please note: Venue information was correct at the time of publication. Please check with individual venues for the latest opening dates, times, prices, etc, before making plans.
Just across the harbour from Whangamatā lies a special wildlife sanctuary, one of New Zealand’s most beautiful places. Known by some locals as Donut Island because of its shape, you can access a beautiful lagoon through a hole in the rock. You can only visit by water because of the island’s fragile environment so the best way to discover its beauty is with a certified kayak or SUP guiding company.
The Coromandel is endowed with safe fishing spots for families. If you have some fishing gear, bring it with you, or you can find some reasonably priced gear in local shops. Fish from a beach or wharf, or take advantage of the many local fishing charters.
3. Hot Water Beach
The almost surreal Hot Water Beach is a family favourite. Best visited two hours either side of low tide, bring a spade and dig your own spa pool right there on the beach!
4. Windows Walk, Karangahake Gorge
Start in the main Karangahake Reserve carpark and set out across the suspension bridges over the Ohinemuri River on a free family adventure. This walk is roughly a one hour loop (2.5km) and there are lots of gold mining remnants including old equipment and tunnels, plus ‘windows’ that look out from the tunnels to the river gorge below. Take a torch or a well-charged phone.
5. Bullswool Farm Heritage Park
Designed with entertaining children of all ages in mind, this brilliant heritage park incorporates a range of farming, kauri and gold mining exhibits, a native bird reserve, and the wonderful farm park with a diverse and interesting array of rarebreed farm animals that can be handfed. It’s just 10 minutes from historic Paeroa, so don’t forget to get a photo in front of the iconic L&P bottle on the way.
6. Cathedral Cove
Well known as one of the ‘must do’ places on The Coromandel, Cathedral Cove is a real gem. Accessible via a scenic 1.5hour return walk, or by boat or kayak through the Te Whanganui o Hei Marine Reserve. There are plenty of local companies who can take you on a magical trip, or pop on the walking shoes and guide yourselves.
7. Whitianga Fun Zone Adventure & Family Park
Just 7km from Whitianga is a family friendly fun zone where there are a huge range of activities that kids of all ages will love. Nestled into the beautiful countryside you will find outdoor laser tag, paintball target shooting, Argo rides, kids quad bikes, a playground, and much more.
8. Cycling on the Hauraki Rail Trail
All along the 197km of this easy Grade 1 family-friendly rail trail ride you will find amazing scenery and interesting things to see and do. While you probably won’t want to take the family on the full 197km, it’s easy to get on and enjoy some of the trail from lots of locations. If you have bikes, simply join the trail wherever it suits or hire bikes from one of the many businesses along the way. You can also arrange to be transported back to your starting point, or book a package deal. Whatever works for you!
9. Ride Coromandel Bike Park
Whether your family wants to cruise on some gently sloping trails or get some epic air, the free to use new bike park has something for everyone including a pump track for the kids, skills area and brand new descent trails.
10. Enjoy a beach day
No trip to The Coromandel is complete without some relaxing time on one of the many beautiful beaches. Kayak, SUP, snorkel, swim, or just enjoy the sand and the sun. Cast a rod off the beach, have a picnic, make sandcastles and relax and enjoy The Coromandel vibe.
- Mini Itinerary: 4 Days In Nelson Tasman
- Destination Guide: The Coromandel
- Nature Days In The Coromandel – Where Kiwis Holiday
Written by Kidspot New Zealand in partnership with Destination Coromandel