Eastland – State Highway 35 from Opotiki to Gisborne
– One of the Worlds Great Coastal Journeys
The first time I headed out from Opotiki on this road, it felt like another world. Here was New Zealand in a more raw and untouched state, where development seems to have passed it by, and left a world where Maori were at home, and I was a visitor – welcome, but a visitor. 30 years later it is still like that.
It may not be on on any list of must dos on your first visit to New Zealand, but next trip, this is the kind of place you should make time for.
If you want to discover New Zealand off the beaten track, taking your time to enjoy the views and the people, then add this drive to your bucket list – you will not be disappointed.
Need a guide – Wildside Adventures
can take you into the hills or snorkelling.
One of my Favourite spots Anaura Bay
We had been driving for some time and needed to stop, so we headed off the main road to the small beach settlement of Anaura Bay, with yet another amazing campsite right on the beach.
Remember to turn off and explore the end of the roads along the highway – you will find some gems.
We back in with our view looking straight out to sea and the off shore islands, I think we are the only ones here, which is great as there does not seem to be lots of showers.
In the summer, who cares – there is always the surf to clean off in.
Next morning we are up early to see the sun rise and walk along the beach.
A small Maori meeting house sits on the shoreline also facing the sunrise.
Further along small baches are in danger of succumbing to climate change.
On the beach I see a crayfish body and a paua shell – living off the sea is a way of life here.
This is the kind of settlement that the book and movie WhaleRider was set in. You could be on the set.
North of Opotiki on the east coast of the North Island of New Zealand is one of the world’s most amazing road trips. It is Eastland – coastal highways that hug it’s beautiful coastline, small villages, this is Maori country. Aruhe is a B&B and holiday home at Whanarua Bay, just north of Te Kaha, the […]More...
Dianne Sharma-Winter writes: The setting sun cloaked the evening sky in shades of pinky pastel, highlighting the active volcano of White Island that dominates the coastline around here. A woman wandering by grabs a knife and in swift strokes, beheads the three struggling Kahawai on the beach. “No taste like it,” she sighs in satisfaction. […]More...
Tanya Cumberland and Charmaine Pountney take a Pacific holiday with a difference – the East Coast Highway Yearning for a Pacific holiday? Why not explore our own Pacific coast – Highway 35 around the East Cape of the North Island? This is a stunning 330km journey from Opotiki to Gisborne. Allow at least a week. […]More...
It was time for a break – I decided to go and visit friends Kate and Lyn from Driftwood Dreamers who live at Opotiki. Driftwood Dreamers offer women’s tours in New Zealand – see their tours here. The Luge in Rotorua On the way I picked up a friend Linda in Rotorua where I have […]More...