hot water beach and cathedral cove

on our way back from whitianga, we decided to stop at a couple of the other beaches in the coromandel.  the first beach we went to, was called hot water beach.  probably sounds like the name is pretty obvious, but it's not the water in the ocean on the beach that is hot, but the water coming from underground.  this beach is over two fissures of water coming from underground reservoirs of superheated water from volcanos.  don't worry, we weren't chilling in magma.  the water cools as it comes to the surface, however, it cools to about 147˚F (that's the highest temp, but i'm trying to be dramatic here so).  most people who come to this beach dig holes in the sand so the hot water comes up through the ground to make something like a natural hot tub/spa, which is a pretty great way to spend your afternoon.

next, we headed over to cathedral cove to spend a few hours relaxing in the sun.  this beach is only accessible by boat or by foot, and since i haven't gotten around to buying that yacht yet, we decided to take a stroll.  this is somewhat of an understatement as the walk from the car park to the actual sand was about 45 minutes on fairly rocky, steep terrain.  if my friend shannon is reading this, table mountain was a 9 and this path was like a 7, but in a bikini and sandals.  once we arrived, it was absolutely one of the most beautiful beaches i've ever been to.  we stayed for about 3 hours, and it was very peaceful and pretty empty considering it's listed as one of the best north island beaches to go to if you're someone who googles those sorts of things....

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