Hahei – Your Insider New Zealand Holiday and Travel Guide Including Tips For Visitors...

If you looking for a place to get away from it all, then look no further than Hahei, situated in Mercury bay on the east coast of Coromandel Peninsula. Just sit on the beach and you’ll soon see why the locals consider Hahei one of the most beautiful beaches in Coromandel; a region renown for its stunning beaches. Hahei is a veritable beach paradise of pink sand and pristine clear blue sea framed by cliffs and maori pa sites either end of the beach and a necklace of islands. Combined with its vibrant community life and unspoiled natural habitat, Hahei is the perfect place to recharge those batteries and take a break from big city life. The first place to start is on the water if you want to see the best Hahei has to offer. Sheltered from rough seas by outlying islands, Hahei is a safe family swimming beach. If you enjoy open water swimming, keep an eye out for the local swimming groups who regularly meet on the beach. They welcome all swimmers, local and visitors and if you’re lucky, you might find yourself swimming with dolphins who visit the area from time to time. The neighbouring marine reserve is a magical aquatic world, abundant with fish and other sea life and ideal for snorkeling, kayaking or if you want to stay dry, taking a cruise on a glass bottom boat. There are several local operators who can help you with gear and equipment or take you on diving trips or boating and kayaking tours. The marine reserve is also home to the famous Cathedral Cove, one of the most photographed locations on the Coromandel Peninsula. Accessible only by foot or water, this magnificent cathedral shaped cavern and its spectacular environs are a “must visit” site. With so much beautiful coastline, boating is also a favourite pastime. You can launch your boat off Hahei beach or from the boat ramp at Cooks Beach just 10 minutes away. Nearby Hot Water Beach is one of those unique experiences every visitor to the Coromandel must do. An underground river of hot water surfaces at Hot Water beach and one hour either side of low tide, visitors flock to the beach to dig their own spa pool in the sand. For easy digging, bring a shovel or you can hire one from the General store. Hot Water Beach also offers some serious surf action for boogie boarders and surfers alike. If all this water activity has made you hungry, then start with a great coffee and delicious homemade food from Hot Waves Cafe at Hot Water Beach. While you’re there, check out Moko Artspace next door. Filled with contemporary NZ and Pacific art, this gallery features jewellery, designware, wall art and sculpture. Or you can head back to Hahei and visit the popular Luna Cafe. Considered the best coffee in Hahei by the locals, Luna is renown for its friendly service and relaxed atmosphere. Hahei has its own micro-climate; excellent for growing fruit and vegetables, much of which ends up in local restaurant kitchens. The Grange is a cafe by day and brasserie by night specialising in local seafood and good hearty meals and for the kids, both big and little, fish and chips and pizza. A great way to finish off a day on the beach! If fine dining is more your style, then enjoy a sumptuous meal at the Church. Set in a refurbished old church, this establishment...

Planning Your New Zealand Vacation to the Bay of Plenty...

There are so many beautiful and mysterious places to see when visiting New Zealand that it can be tough to focus on a single area. May we suggest a trip to the Bay of Plenty? After arriving at the Auckland Airport, hire a reliable rental car and head straight for this area on the North Island, which is located in the Waikato region, not terribly far from the airport. Here’s what you need to know to plan an enjoyable holiday to the Bay of Plenty. Getting There From the Airport If you don’t want to spend all your time in New Zealand simply getting to your ultimate destination, then heading straight for the Bay of Plenty from the airport will have you enjoying the first day of your trip in no time! After arriving and picking up your car rental at the Auckland Airport, you need to get out of the hustle and bustle of traffic. Head toward George Bolt Memorial Drive, then toward the South-Western Motorway/State Highway 20, until you can merge onto State Highway 1. From there you will merge onto State Highway 2 to Mount Maunganui. Then it’s just a few minutes more of travel time until you reach the shores of the Bay of Plenty, just outside Tauranga. Where to Go, What to See Unless you want to backpack your way across the region or explore the road less traveled, a rental car that is big enough to comfortably fit everyone in your travel party will work just fine. Getting around the Bay of Plenty is easy and there are lots of good roads that will take you everywhere you want to go. The Te Puna Quarry Park is a good place to start. Located just 15km west of Tauranga, this 32ha park is full of beautiful and amazing sights – both natural and manmade. The park features plenty of unique sculptures interspersed amid nature. You can see swan plants and waterfalls, herb gardens and flowers, a butterfly house and a great view of the sea. There are plenty of birds willing to show off their feathered finery, as well. The price is right, with donations requested to help pay for park maintenance. For a bit of history during your holiday, head over to the Elms Mission House and Gardens. This is a recognized European heritage site and the oldest one in the region. The Elms is home to many interesting buildings, some dating as far back as 1830. It was founded by missionaries, who set up camp here to bring Christianity to the native people of New Zealand. One of them, Reverend Volkner, wasn’t very lucky – he lost his head during the mission, literally! Definitely check out the giant feijoa tree located on the Mission grounds – and do try its fruit, which is quite popular with Kiwis. For those who like a bit of adventure with their travel, a nighttime kayaking trip amidst a bevy of glowworms is a great activity to add to your itinerary. Located in a pastoral setting marked by sparkling streams and just minutes from Tauranga, McLaren Falls Park is the gateway to your kayaking adventure. After sunset, point your kayak toward a shallow canyon to find the darkness and peace of your surroundings lit up by thousands of glowworms. It is truly a magical experience. You may also want to plan a side trip to the Fernland Spa Thermal Mineral Springs to soak in the clear, bubbling...

Nova Scotia – Fun and Recreation

Known as “Canada’s Ocean Playground,” Nova Scotia delivers amazing recreational opportunities. Obviously, water sports are popular with visitors to this Atlantic Province. Boating, swimming, kayaking, sailing and surfing, as well as fishing, are perfect ways to spend the day in scenic Nova Scotia. This province has beautiful beaches for an evening stroll or a morning of beachcombing with the kids. Vacationers can play in or by the ocean. Yet this beautiful province offers as much excitement and adventure on land as on the sea. Visitors can enjoy whale watching (even from lookout points on land) or bird watching in the forests. Whether you prefer walking and hiking, riding a bicycle or an all-terrain vehicle, skydiving or geocaching, Nova Scotia has adventures waiting for every visitor. Kids love camping and taking part in the events and activities in Nova Scotia parks. This province believes that “parks are for people.” Following up on that theme, the parks host free events. All ages enjoy the various tours – boat tours, nature and wildlife tours, and town and country tours. Nova Scotia’s outdoor adventure tours and multi-activity adventures will satisfy the strongest craving for adventure. ‘Into the Wilderness Expedition’ is just one of the multi-activity adventures. On this trip, groups can explore the natural environment with professional naturalists as their guide. ‘Sea Spray Outdoor Adventures’ at Smelt Brook can be guided or self-guided tours (or full-day or half-day excursions). The adventures can include whale watching in Cape Islander or zodiac boats, as well as kayaking, hiking, and cycling. This adventure tour is available year-round and will include cross-country and backcountry skiing and snowshoeing in winter. Golf lovers can choose from outstanding courses across the province. The Abercrombie Country Club is in New Glasgow. The Annapolis Royal Golf and County Club overlooks the Annapolis River and Fort Anne. Visitors can find comfortable and affordable Nova Scotia hotels in this picturesque region. Nova Scotia offers several vacation packages. People can focus their holidays on do-it-yourself activities, guided outings, extended tours, or just play it by air. Visitors will always find fun ‘things to do’ in this province and there is something for everyone. This exceptional Atlantic Province provides diverse experiences. Everyone enjoys the province’s parks (referred to as “Nature’s Resorts”). As an alternative, vacationers can relax in a health spa or wellness centre in a spectacular setting. Tourists can even take part in Aboriginal Tourism including visits to aboriginal cultural centres, learning about the traditions and culture of the people, and attending traditional events such as an Annual Powwow. As well, Nova Scotia offers the Outdoors-Woman® (BOW) program, a workshop aimed primarily at women, to help them learn outdoor skills. BOW® focuses on fishing, hunting, and additional outdoor activities, as well as building bonds and friendship among...

Cape Town Lures Visitors With Spectacular Beauty and a Rich Cultural Diversity...

Cape Town has had a long and turbulent history. With Apartheid still linger in the minds and hearts of its people. Transformation has led to the new ‘Rainbow Nation’, which can be experienced in the cosmopolitan city centre of Cape Town. Flower sellers, business executives, parking attendants, office workers and shoppers all rub shoulders in a setting of both historical and modern buildings, backed by the city’s most famous landmark, Table Mountain. The colourful Malay Quarter, the remains of District Six, St George’s Cathedral, Government Avenue and the old Castle are historically significant, while world-class African and international restaurants tempt travellers with their culinary delights. Although an African city, Cape Town has a European flavour but the city has comforts of First World standard. Cape Town’s unique setting means that it can be enjoyed from various vantage points: Table Mountain provide breathtaking vistas over the city bowl and the Cape peninsula. You can find many scenic routes along magnificent stretches of coastline and inland terrain leading to special places like Cape Point. The city has four distinct seasons. Summer – White sandy beaches, Autumn – Crisp colours, Winter – Ferocity of stormy seas in winter, Spring – Show of Cape ‘fynbos’ flowers. From culture, history and scenery – to an unforgettable experience. Cape Town is a special place with much to contribute towards its growing reputation as a favoured travel destination. Cape Town Excursions ** Robben Island and Table Mountain South Africa’s most widely known tourist attraction is probably Robben Island, seven miles (11 km) from Cape Town in the centre of Table Bay. For nearly 400 years this tiny rocky island outcrop was utilised as a place of banishment, exile, isolation and imprisonment for numerous categories of people ostracised by society, ranging from political protestors to lepers. During the years of Apartheid, Robben Island became synonymous with institutional brutality as numerous freedom fighters, including the island’s most famous resident Nelson Mandela, were imprisoned here for more than a quarter of a century. The island is now a museum, symbolising liberation and the triumph of the human spirit. Regular island tours are conducted, lasting three and a half hours. The tours, which are guided by former prisoners, include a visit to the maximum-security prison on the island where an estimated 3,000 freedom fighters were incarcerated between 1962 and 1991. ** Capman’s Peak Drive lookout Chapman’s Peak Chapman’s Peak Drive is one of the most spectacular coastal roads in South Africa, linking the seaside community of Hout Bay to the Noordhoek Valley along the Atlantic Coast, with breathtaking views from along the narrow, winding road blasted into the cliffs. Constructed in 1915, the six-mile (9km) route took about seven years to complete and was built as a shorter, alternative route between Cape Town central and the South Peninsula. Many visitors use this scenic route to reach Cape Point Nature Reserve situated at the tip of the Peninsula. ** Penguins on Boulders Beach A recommended day excursion from the city includes a trip through the southern suburbs and along the scenically beautiful False Bay coastline via Muizenberg to Simonstown, South Africa’s principal naval base. Simonstown lies about 25 miles (40km) from the city and is a quaint town built around a naval dockyard, with well-preserved Victorian buildings, museums, sidewalk cafes and local legends to learn about. One such legend is about a dog called ‘Just Nuisance’ who ‘joined’ the British navy, becoming their mascot, when Simonstown was a British base. A...

The Importance of Travel Vaccination

From time to time, we like to take time away from the normal routine of daily life in order to have fun and spend quality time away from the demands of work. Many people enjoy – we all do – the prospects of a holiday abroad. This is the perfect solution that once in a while helps us unwind from the tensions and stress associated with our professional engagements. However, there is one thing that nearly all of us tend to overlook or simply neglect when planning for holidays. This is nothing else but travel vaccination. You might wonder whether or not it is necessary to be vaccinated before traveling to another country or region. One misconception that most of us have is that vaccination is meant for children and pets, and so you might wonder why you need to bother with this especially when you are going on holiday. The answer is simple – where we end up conditions may not be similar to what we are used to way back at home. Certain infections are associated with some regions only, and so when we visit search places there are higher chances that we might get infected. Imagine that horrors of being a victim of a strange disease just because you neglected to take a simple precaution! And suppose where you are, you cannot find the right medical facility to handle your case? You can guess the rest. As they say, prevention is better than cure, so it should not be too much trouble to have travel vaccination before setting off to any destination. As part of conditions for visiting, some countries have legal requirements for a certificate showing that one has complied with immunization requirements. Probably this is meant to prevent the spread of deadly infections as well as ensuring that you do not pose a danger to your health and that of others. So next time you are planning a holiday to a far flung destination, do not forget to take this important step. One thing you should be aware of is that this should be done by a qualified Doctor Jindalee physician who has intimate knowledge about travel vaccination and the right vaccines to use for every country. This should be done well in advance of the trip so that the medicine can take effect in the body. If you are wondering where to get this type of service, you can try a renowned facility for travel vaccination such as Western suburbs doctor...