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New Zealand 3591

Quick Facts

Māori Meaning:
The place of Hei
30 - 40 min (35 km) from Whitianga
2 hr 15 min (175 km) from Auckland
Population (2018):
Around 300 permanent residents
Hahei, Coromandel, New Zealand

Stunning beaches, marine reserve and the iconic Cathedral Cove.

Hahei is a small settlement and a well-known tourist attraction for it’s beautiful sandy beaches like the famous Cathedral Cove.

An amazing coastline offering fantastic scenic views, recreational places for people to interact with nature like the Hahei Marine Reserve – Te Whanganui-A-Hei which covers nine square kilometres and is administered by the Department of Conservation.

The site was chosen for a marine reserve because of the abundance and varied sea life associated with the Coastline and outlying islands. The intricate caves and underwater arches offer excellent diving and snorkelling. As does Gemstone Bay where you can enjoy the snorkel trail designed for snorkelling novices to the more experienced.

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Cathedral Cove walking track

Cathedral Cove Walking Track

Alert: Closed due to severe weather events

This site is closed until further notice. It may be unsafe due to the risk from slips, flooding and fallen trees. It will take time for DOC to assess and repair damage.

Cathedral Cove is closed due a landslip and the ongoing risk of rockfall and erosion. It is not safe for visitors.  

Do not use the track down to the beach. This alert will be removed when the cove is considered safe.

The rāhui placed by Ngati Hei has been lifted at Cathedral Cove and sea access has been granted. However DOC have advised that there is still clear risk associated with going to this site and have stated that people need to inform themselves properly about any risks before visiting. The Cathedral Cove walking track remains closed. 

Famous Cathedral Cove is one of the “must visit” places near Whitianga.

Follow the signposted walkway which starts at the top of Grange Road. Note that from October to the end of April, the Grange Road car park is designated as drop-off only. Visitors should park at the Visitor Car Park at the entrance to Hahei and then either walk from there or take the shuttle bus.

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2.5 km
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1.5 HR return
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Transport Options to Cathedral Cove

Cathedral Cove Water Taxi

Leaves from the beach in front of Hahei carpark to Cathedral Cove every 30 minutes. Look for yellow and black flags which mark the pick up and drop off points. Note the taxi does not operate during rough weather.

Cathedral Cove Kayak

Provides a variety of sea kayaking tour options to paddle to Cathedral Cove.

Useful Visitor Information

Local Tips for Hahei

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Getting to Hahei

You can get to Hahei by car following SH25, near Whenuakite there is a major intersection which is well sign posted which will take you directly to Hahei.
View in map.

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Must do

  • Pack a backpack with all of your beach essentials and take a magnificent walk to Cathedral Cove. You can take a detour along the way and visit Stingray Bay (20 minutes one way).
  • The intricate caves and underwater arches in the Te Whanganui a Hei Marine Reserve offer excellent diving and snorkelling. At Gemstone Bay you can enjoy the snorkel trail which is designed for all snorkelling abilities from novices to the experienced.
  • The annual April Hahei Tractor Bash has family fun activities including an impressive tractor parade. Set yourself up with a beach towel on Hahei Beach for the day and enjoy some unique beach time.
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Hahei beach boat ramp

Accessible by tractor from Wigmore Crescent and trailer parking close by – note this ramp is swell dependent.

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Parking Areas

  • Parking is at the Visitor Car Park on Pa Road, on the right as you enter Hahei.
  • During the summer period a shuttle service runs from the free visitor car park on Pa Road to the start of the Cathedral Cove track. Alternatively walk to the start of the track which will add an extra 25 minutes from the car park around the beach.
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Things to do with kids

If you need an alternative from beach activities, Hahei Village Green playground including a basketball hoop is the perfect port of call adjacent to cafes, ice cream shops and a tennis court.

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Check the low tide times before setting out – you need low tide to dig your hot pool.

Download and print our Tides PDF file for local tide times. It can be used for Hot Water Beach low tides throughout the whole year, to plan your soak in the pools months ahead of arrival.

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Where to stay

Renting a bach is a popular way of enjoying a stay at Hahei.

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Where to get supplies

The Hahei General Store is a one-stop shop for ice creams, everyday items, petrol and local advice.

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Public Toilets (restrooms)

  • Village Green Toilets
    Hahei Beach Road.
  • Beach Toilets
    Hahei Beach Road.
  • Wigmore Stream Toilets
    Pa Road.
  • Kotare Reserve Toilets
    Pa Road (for sports events only).
  • Hahei Visitor Carpark Toilets
    20 Pa Road.
  • Cathedral Cove Carpark Toilets
    Grange Road.
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Waste Dumping Stations

  • Hahei Holiday Resort.
  • Hot Water Beach Holiday Park.
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A big thanks to local photographer Dmitri from Fern Vision, for supplying epic Coromandel Peninsula photography.