The Coromandel in the Spring: something for everyone

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Spring on The Coromandel is an amazing time to experience the very best the landscape has to offer, including some fantastic annual events that are worth booking well in advance for a weekend getaway. Sunlover Retreat in Tairua combines luxury with comfort, making it an excellent accommodation choice to take advantage of all the events and activities taking place in The Coromandel throughout the Spring season. Whether you are a foodie, a fitness fanatic or a fan of Coromandel art and culture, expect to experience The Coromandel as a sensational springtime destination.

For Foodies

This year the Whitianga Scallop Festival was a sell-out, with tickets getting scooped up well in advance to attend New Zealand’s iconic seafood festival. Since 2004 the Scallop Festival has attracted seafood lovers from all over New Zealand and beyond. There are many ways to cook a scallop and you are bound to learn some of them at Whitianga Scallop Festival, where you can witness and sample scallops being cooked by well-known chefs, restaurants and community groups. Quality live entertainment, seafood cooking classes and demonstrations add to the flavour and fun of the one day festival, held annually in September with local venues staging events and theme nights in the four fringing days.

2016 Scallop Festival 31

For Weekend Warriors

It’s no surprise The Coromandel attracts outdoor adventurers of all persuasions, given its stunning natural environment. The Coromandel backyard truly is an adventure playground - and there are several Spring events worth marking on the calendar and planning a weekend away around. See in the Spring with the annual Whangamata Run/Walk festival, now in it’s 22nd year, held early September. The event attracts an enthusiastic crowd of all ages and offers 5km, 10km and half marathon run/walk races.

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If trail running (or walking) into the spectacular slopes and valleys of Karangahake Gorge sounds like your idea of fun, the Xterra Waihi is a fantastic weekend event, held annually in October. There are distances to suit all levels, from 8km to 43.5km. Running over historic swing bridges, past mine relics and alongside swift rivers makes for an unforgettable adventure, with refreshments, entertainment and an awesome Coromandel atmosphere waiting for you at the finish.

The K2 Cycle Race attracts keen kiwi cyclists and internationals from all over the world. Known as possibly the toughest one day cycle challenge in the Southern Hemisphere, the K2 encompasses a 200km circuit of the Coromandel Peninsula, alternating the start point between Whitianga, Tairua, Thames and Coromandel Town each year. The Flight Centre K2 is held annually at the end of October and now in its 16th year attracts well over a thousand entries. It is an epic, gruelling event, providing equal thrills and anticipation for contestants and spectators alike.

K2 Cycle Race

For Art and Culture Fans

The heritage town of Thames embraces its alter-identity in November, as the annual Steampunk The Thames festival hits town. Celebrating Thames’ unique blend of art, heritage and culture, the four day festival features intriguing exhibitions, workshops, live entertainment, banquets and even a Ball. The Steampunk theme explores the Victorian industrial heritage and future of Thames through art. It is a vibrant, dynamic festival offering plenty of opportunities for dressing up, having fun and trying something different.

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In Whitianga, Creative Mercury Bay offers an outstanding annual programme of performing arts events and workshops, including superb NZ drama and music through Arts On Tour NZ. Events are staged throughout the year at various Whitianga locations, with a range of quality entertainment featured during the Spring. Creative Mercury Bay’s arts programme is well worth a weekend visit to The Coromandel. Visit their website for seasonal programme of events.

For Ultimate Indulgence

If the idea of all that activity over a weekend is exhausting, don’t worry, because Spring is also the perfect time to visit The Coromandel for a quiet getaway filled nothing but relaxation. Sunlover Retreat offers the ultimate Spring getaway stay and is an idyllic destination in which to enjoy Tairua’s mild Spring weather, long lazy days and unsurpassable sunsets. The award winning luxury B&B located in Tairua provides superior comfort to unwind, relax and soak up the scenery from a magnificent hillside deck. Hosts Donna and Chris Brooke are passionate about The Coromandel and eager to share their vast knowledge of Tairua, Hahei, Hot Water Beach and surrounds. For breakfast they focus on offering the best quality locally sourced and home-prepared ingredients to guests. Sunlover Retreat accommodation includes three beautifully appointed private suites with ensuite bathrooms and a comfortable communal lounge opening out onto a vast deck overlooking Tairua, Mt Paku and the rugged Coromandel skyline.

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Whether you are planning a high-octane, full-itinerary weekend or a slow-paced pre-summer getaway, one thing is important. Book it in. A Coromandel Spring getaway is soon to be New Zealand’s worst best-kept secret.