Tairua is a maori place name meaning “two tides” and nothing could be more apt. For Tairua is one of the most beautiful beach resorts in the Coromandel, with a picturesque harbour linking two white sand beaches.
At the head of the harbour is Mt Paku, a twin coned hill that was once an island but is now joined to the land by a sand dune. Walk to the top and you’ll soon see how Tairua got its name when you look over the town, harbour, beaches and Tairua’s twin resort; Pauanui.
Talk to the locals and they’ll tell you that Tairua is a soulful town centred around community and family life. Yet Tairua welcomes visitors with its very own style of relaxed hospitality.
There’s one thing that’s sure to get your stomach rumbling and that’s the smell of freshly baked pastries hot from the oven at Manaia Café & Bar. Manaia is the maori word for spiritual guardian and this place is an absolute godsend to anyone whose day doesn’t start until they’ve had a great coffee. With a nice indoor/outdoor feel, locals rate Manaia for their cooked breakfasts and outstanding seafood dishes.
After breakfast, you’re spoiled for choice. Do you go to the beach, the harbour, or just stay in town? The great thing about Tairua is that you can do it all in the same day.
Tairua is blessed with one of Coromandel’s finest surf beaches that’s only a 10 minute walk from town! With golden sand and safe swimming areas, Ocean beach slopes down to a steep undersea shelf which is responsible for creating some awesome waves. When the waves are up, Ocean Beach is a haven for surfers and boogie boarders.
Then there’s Tairua harbour. Just a 5 minute walk from town, head straight for the little yellow dive shop at the base of Mt Paku. These are the guys to take you fishing, diving and kayaking. Tairua is home to the millennium marlin. Catch one of these and you have bragging rights for years to come or explore the crystal clear waters of Tairua harbour by kayak.
Like many harbours, Tairua is great for boaties and has a big boat ramp for launching your boat. There’s also a couple of wharves and at high tide, they are a popular place to throw out a line and try your luck at fishing.
Head back into town and there’s tennis courts, parks, sports grounds and an 18 hole golf course with a club house that serves great meals during summer. The 19th hole never looked better.
After the beach and harbour, you might be feeling a little peckish and again Tairua doesn’t miss a beat. How about a nice Italian dish looking out over the waters of Tairua Harbour? The Cypress Tree always delights with fabulous service and food. They also do takeaway pizza so you can picnic down on the waterfront.
Then there’s Shells Restaurant. Locals claim this place has a brilliant chef who cooks the most amazing food. But you’ll have to check it out for yourself and while you’re there, you must try the seafood or the baby chicken with roasted vegetables.
There’s probably still time to walk off all that food and head to the top of Mt Paku. Take a look over the Tairua town, the beach and harbour and look forward to tomorrow, when you get to do it all over again.
Simple Green Travel Tips
As the outdoor temperature starts to rise and the last day of school quickly approaches, it is that time of year to start planning your summer vacation. Maintaining an eco-friendly lifestyle doesn’t have to take a hiatus when you travel. In fact, it shouldn’t. With millions of tourists traveling each year by air, land and sea, it’s more important now than ever to do your part to preserve nature’s treasures. Whether you are planning to spend your vacation lounging on a tropical beach, or pounding the pavement site seeing, the following are tips you can take along with you as you travel to help reduce your carbon footprint.