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CJ Weekly 11 - the Coromandel

Updated: Jan 30, 2020

Kia Ora and hello!! Welcome to the eleventh edition of the CJ weekly and woohoo we're in the double digits well and truly now! Week 11was a grand ol' week - still involved us driving round in circles everywhere in the North Island but you know what - we've just learnt to embrace it now. Why just go from A to B when you can throw in Z and D too and then head back to A and realise in doing so, that you never actually made it all the way to B? Anyway, after attempting to get up to the Coromandel about 103,904,209 times, we finally made it there and in all honesty, it was well worth the wait. We did all the touristy things - but put our own CJ spin on them where possible, like digging our own wee spa at Hot Water Beach but under the Milky Way at 1:30am. And obviously because I'm more or less a fortune teller, I basically pre-empted a break down in last week's entry. Yep Vin got so blimmin' excited to finally make it up to the Coromandel he started overheating. Good one Vin. Bloody good one you cracker.



  • TOTAL $8,346 (combined - weeks one to 11).

  • $837 for week 11 only



  1. Driving past a fence lined entirely with hiking boots. NZ you're just bloody great.

  2. MAROKOPA FALLS. These falls just blew us away. They are 35m high and absolutely breathtaking. We feel like we have seen quite a few waterfalls over here, but Marokopa Falls took the cake. They were just so commanding. They just kind of took you you know. I could have sat there all day marvelling at them.

  3. THE KINDEST LADY IN THE WORLD BRINGING IN OUR WASHING. Oh goodness me I'm almost getting teary writing this. You see James and I had done a couple of loads of washing (big deal as it was paid washing guys), hung them out and then headed off for the day. Because we're us, our plans of returning at 4pm somehow became 10pm and when we arrived back at the campsite it was dark, cold and rainy. Rainy? Raining? Hmm. Anyway, like any reasonable person over the age of 22 that has unfortunately learnt to appreciate the importance of laundry, we sprinted up to the washing line, ready to pull our clothes off quicker than the stampede in the Lion King. But alas, when we got to the washing line it was EMPTY. EMPTIER than the hole in my heart when I discovered Pascalls had stopped producing Jaybee Jellybeans (still a raw topic guys so no questions/comments on this please). So anyway we all know it's fight or flight right? It was 10pm so I was ready to fly off to sleep but of course Jim got all defensive and fighty real quick as he was completely convinced someone had stolen all our clothes JUST to get their hands on his Ferg Burger Tee Shirt. When in reality, the campground owner just saw that the weather was starting to take a turn and had generously decided to pull in all our washing for us. Such a simple act, but one I know I'm never ever going to forget. Just so so so kind and caring.

  4. How beautiful and quiet the Coromandel was at this time of the year. We somehow managed to get the most beautiful weather up there and because it's getting past Summer, the Coromandel was incredibly quiet. I'm talking entire beaches to ourselves. Empty campgrounds. Not a soul anywhere. It was just magic and what I imagined the Coromandel would be like (however we heard that in the Summer it's packed like a T Swift Concert with just one DOC campsite being able to accomodate over 1,000 people!! ).

  5. Colin - the LOVELIEST mechanic in Rotorua. He checked Vinnie out, gave James a right bollocking for packing so much gear in him (I told Colin that James can't bear to travel without all his clothes and many face serums) and then gave us a homegrown apple to try (he even cut it in two so we wouldn't argue haha #Colinknowshowtosaveamarriage). He was just such a genuinely lovely man. Colin for the win. Look it almost rhymes. That's when you know it's true.


  1. Vinnie overheating. And Colin (World's loveliest man) not knowing why.

  2. Pulling right over on the side of the road so the incoming car could easily get past us (NZ roads are notoriously narrow) AND THEN NOT GETTING A WAVE OR A SMILE OR ANYTHING. NO I LIE WE DIDN'T NOT GET ANYTHING. WE GOT CRUSHED FAITH IN HUMANITY. THAT'S WHAT WE GOT.

  3. Having an unlucky night. Driving in the rain for about four hours and finally rocking up to a free camp we had stayed at just a couple of weeks ago, only to find out it was no longer a free camp and in fact prohibited. So at 11pm, being the rule abiding citizens we are, we decided to head somewhere else for the night. Thinking we could thank our lucky socks we knew of a second site - we headed there. Same thing. New signs erected saying no freedom camping. So at 11:20pm we were getting pretty tired but decided to try a third site we had found online. And yep you guessed it, that now had a locked gate in front of it too. Thankfully at 11:45pm we FINALLY managed to find a place to sleep, albeit we were feeling pretty defeated. But also secretly like champions. Defeated champions.

  4. This really rude couple at Cathedral Cove in the Coromandel. For those of you who don't know - Cathedral Cove is probably one of the most popular attractions in New Zealand, and a real photography 'hot spot'. Anyway, this couple had set up early at the Cove taking photos at sunrise when two girls started running around getting a few shots of their own (which is totally OK to do - it's a beautiful public place and there for all to enjoy). Apparently not finding this ok, the couple went over and quite rudely told them (not asked them) to move and get out of their shots. Then unfortunately, the girls got their backs up and dilly dallied to further aggravate the couple (which 100% worked). It was just really sad to see this interaction. And so unnecessary. About 20 minutes earlier, I had asked if it was ok for me to quickly run out for a photo and everyone said yes and agreed to take it in turns after me. I just don't get it? Why can't we all be polite?

  5. How short the days are getting. SO SHORT.

THREE THINGS WE FOUND FUNNY (with a sneaky fourth)

  1. Me jumping (literally) to join James while he was doing an instagram story, and completely miscalculating it and smashing my arm against a metal pole and bruising it real bad. The worst part is we have it all on cam.

  2. Hot water beach being SUPER DUPER HOT. Like way hotter than expected. We kept jumping in our wee spa pool and then instantly having to jump out. Eventually we realised we needed to make a drain so some of the hot water could leave. Kind of glad it was 1am and no-one saw because I think we would have looked pretty silly.

  3. James telling Colin (World's kindest man - as seen above) the wrong engine model for Vinnie. Colin had said "I thought it would have been an easy job based on the engine you gave me but when I started working, I realised it was a completely different model". You see this is hilarious because I missed Colin (World's kindest man) first saying this to Jim (who then hid it from me) but thankfully Colin found it so hilarious he repeated it and made sure I heard . Hehehehe. Not that I would get the engine right either.


  1. How many people visit Cathedral Cove each year? And what percentage are Kiwi?

  2. Did the kind American lady get a parking ticket at Cathedral Cove? (She was real panicked and asked us if we thought she'd get one and I don't want to ruin anyone's day so I was all nah you'll be fine, don't even worry, but now I'm worried she did and she hates us).

  3. Does New Zealand have the most ride own lawnmowers per capita?

  4. Will the Coromandel Peninsula ever be asphalted?

  5. Are you really meant to eat the apple core?


And that's a wrap for week 11! And what a wonderful week it was. The Coromandel has always been a place I've wanted to visit and it so so lived up to all the hype. I feel like I can finally join all of New Zealand when they rave about their Summers in the 'Coro. Thanks for reading and if you feel like helping us out, please keep your fingers crossed week 12 won't include any overheating!

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