The road out of Coromandel takes you over to the east coast, either on Highway 25, or on the narrower road through the mountains, both of which are not tarred. Whitianga doesn’t have much to offer, unless you are a sport fisherman. Organized shark, kingfish and marlin fishing trips to the waters of the South Pacific start from here.
There are three major attractions on the other side of Mercury Bay: Cooks Beach, Hahei and Hot Water Beach. Those living in Whitianga cross with the ferry from Ferry Landing Wharf, built in 1840, the oldest brick pier in Australasia. The ferry operates between 7:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. daily as required. Since the three places are only accessible by car, it is more convenient to drive directly to the region via Coroglen and Whenuakite.
The Shakespeare Cliff Scenic Reserve lies to the northwest of Cooks Beach. A memorial of stone recalls Captain Cook’s visit here between November 5 and 15, 1769. This special spot offers a splendid view across Mercury Bay, and an ideal opportunity to wander along the beaches at Lonely Bay and Cooks Bay. They are situated on the right side. Locals prefer the friendly family atmosphere at the beach of the Purangi Estuary.