Thursday, April 5th 2018
New day beginning with breakfast at 8:45 and some more good tips from my hosts Elena and Matthias. They recommend a tour to Fletcher bay in the north of the Coromandel peninsula. Just enjoying the drive and stop where ever I feel to stop.
So I drive north, the ca. 55 km to Coromandel town. A cosy little town (not more) that has some small shops and cafes. I think this would be very dead without the tourist getting here. One important stop for me is the pharmacy in town. I got a good bunch om mosquito bites on and under the feet and the itching this night was hell. So some ointment and anti histamine to reduce the bloody itching.
Now the most important part of the trip starts. Colville is the last village that has asphalt on the road. The rest is a 36 km stretch on one lane gravel road and I think this street is also on the no go list of my rental car… don’t tell anybody.
A winding road along a beautiful coastline, sometimes through hills with meadows and sometimes past steep rims. Meeting traffic has to be spotted ahead to wait where it fits most. A lot of Pick up trucks and SUVs here and some camper vans. My small Toyota is no match.
On the way I find a few geocaches. But New Zealand has one problem which even seems to be worth than in Germany: rural areas do not have mobile phone connections. I mean, in Germany you feel like in Africa sometimes, but here you are lucky to get something. When you live in Norway you are used to high speed data connections on the most remote mountain top. Here is nothing. And I didn’t download the data to my GPS. Lucky to get a signal. Not sure if the emergency numbers would work.
After more than an hour on the gravel road and several stops (some places I would have chosen to land with my boat had I been a pirate^^) I arrive at Fletcher bay. The road ends on a car park and camp ground. There are some caravans here, but only 4 people on the beach. This is the starting/end point of a days hike to Stony bay. Signs tell you that you have to be fit to do the hike.
I sit down in the shade of a tree at the beach, remove my zip-off legs from the trousers and enjoy an apple and water while looking out on the ocean. Meditation for the soul.
But after an hour I have to think about going back. Another hour of dirt road. But the drive back feels much shorter. Few cars going out to Fletcher bay now in the afternoon.
Back to Coromandel town on this luxurious asphalt road and down to Thames again. Today it is Pizza from Pizza hut for dinner. And I will not eat this crap again. It tasted like old socks. But people are waiting in line to get this cheap, not tasty stuff. Must be the English genes in the Kiwis.
I am home quiet early so some blogging and the evening is concluded with some Netflix series.