One of the best things about living in New Zealand is the ability explore the island!
Last week Michelle and I visited the Coromandel Peninsula here in New Zealand.
If you don’t know anything about this stretch of New Zealand, which I didn’t before visiting, here’s a bit about what Wikipedia says about the region: “The Coromandel Peninsula on the North Island of New Zealand extends 85 kilometres north from the western end of the Bay of Plenty, forming a natural barrier to protect the Hauraki Gulf and the Firth of Thames in the west from the Pacific Ocean to the east.
In fine weather the peninsula is clearly visible from Auckland, the country’s biggest city, which lies on the far shore of the Hauraki Gulf, 55 kilometres to the west.”
You can see some of the amazing views of this area on these photos from Wikipedia:
So pretty, right? It’s a gorgeous part of New Zealand!
Unfortunately we picked a bad time to go as it rained during most of our trip. The ride up there was rainy but fun since we had about three hours to chat.
It’s awesome to meet someone and be able to get along so well almost instantly. I love meeting blogging friends!
On the way there we stopped in Tairua to get lunch at the grocery store.
Once we got to the coast we checked into our hostel and then headed to the hot water beach where we played in the super hot water.
After we went to the beach we headed to the local winery for wine tasting at The Purangi Winery.
After visiting the hot water beach we asked around for a winery and were directed here. When we arrived I was really excited to see such a cute little place nestled into the landscape by the river.
We were happy to learn that they did wine tastings.
We entered and the guy behind the bar starting pouring wine into shot glasses for us to try.
I’ve never had wine from shot glasses before, so that was a new experience in wine tasting. I wonder if that’s common? I admit to not going to very many wine tastings before. In fact I’ve only gone to two, one in Europe and one in Memphis.
Despite the shot glasses, the wine wasn’t bad. Michelle seemed to really like it.
He also informed us that they made flavoured liqueurs and poured us a drink of feijoa liqueur and soda water.
It tasted great! We also got to eat slices of the feijoa, which was really yummy despite being mostly frozen.
The only problem with this whole is experience was the guy serving us kept talking the whole time. He wasn’t talking about the wines but instead was talking about past visitors, other countries, races, how great New Zealand was compared to all of them. It was the worst case of Tall Poppy Syndrome I’d ever seen. He bad mouthed pretty much every group of people that had ever been in his establishment. He was offensive, racist, not funny at all yet kept trying to make us laugh even though I had completely shut down and had been silent for the last ten minutes. By the time I got to this drink I had had enough. I was more than ready to go and Michelle felt the same way. Luckily it was near the end of the tasting.
The last thing he poured us was a drink of all the other liqueurs they made.
I actually LOVED the plum liqueur. I drank it and immediately fell in love. I could have drank it all without anything mixed it was that good. I would have bought a bottle too, except the experience was so horrible that I couldn’t imagine giving them any of my money. I’m not sure what the point of his incessant talking was since it obviously was making us uncomfortable and unhappy. I hope he learns to read his audience better and maybe they will encounter better business. I for one, won’t be going back.
The next day we attempted to go to Cathedral Cove.
Unfortunately it was another rainy and cold day, so we didn’t even walk down to the cove.
The sun did try to peak through briefly but it just wasn’t enough. I wish there had been better weather for our trip!
Afterwards we headed home and pulled off on the side of a mountain and walked up a small path to an outlook. There were bees all over the place and Michelle was really excited about taking photos of them. :) Even though it was a cloudy day the views were fantastic.
Despite the crappy weather during our trip to the Coromandel Peninsula, I really had a great time! The beaches were different and nice, the scenery was lovely, and the company was great! We also made lots of friends while we were there because everyone is so friendly and happy to chat with fellow travelers.
For the next person who wants to come visit me here in New Zealand I’ll try to make the weather nicer. ;)