Kayaking in Cathedral Cove

Published: February 16, 2015

Coromandel Peninsula and Cathedral Cove were far from unknown territory to me when I reached Hahei Beach to try a Cathedral Cove Kayak Tour. I had been there about 2 years before and had explored Cathedral Cove where I had been for a swim, and while there, I had seen a few kayakers who had made me yearn for more than just the short walk I had done to Cathedral Cove's famous rock.

So when I reached the parking of Hahei Beach, the kayak tour I was about to try had been on my mind for some time. And I was far from disappointed: turquoise water sea, pink sand and flowering pohutukawas, not a bad start at all!

At 13:15 I joined the rest of the group and after a brief introduction (kayaks, tour, safety rules and fellow kayakers) off we went, in double or single seaters, for a truly magical experience along Mercury Bay's coast, in Te Whanganui-A-Hei Marine Reserve.

First, we spotted a few rays and even though we searched the sea for orcas they didn't grant us with a visit. We then stopped for a little rest on Cathedral Cove's well-known beach and enjoyed a swim, visited the "loo with a view" and just bathed in the sun while our guide was getting our afternoon tea ready - it looked and tasted fabulous! All perfectly timed to recharge our batteries before the last leg of the trip: we headed out to sea, observed a few cormorants and navigated through a few rocks before going back to Hahei beach. We also stopped a few times and held all our kayaks together to listen to our guide tell us more about Hahei's Maori legends and wildlife.

In short, if you've been wanting to kayak in North Island, think about the Coromandel, and in particular about Cathedral Cove - it is a fantastic spot and one of the few places where children can kayak too.

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