Over the next few weeks Frederick Church and Ursula Lambert, DOC Camp Managers, will share some of the conservation campsite gems around Northern Coromandel.
By Ursula Lambert, DOC Camp Manager
Where is the Fletcher Bay campsite and why would anyone want to spend time over winter there?
Well, why not? This lovely campground is situated in a gorgeous valley with a stony, sandy beach at one end and a working farm with magnificent hillsides reminiscent of the South Island at the other.
You’ll find it at the top of the Coromandel on the western side, a two and a half hours drive from Thames. The drive is absolutely stunning with some of the most breathtaking scenery in New Zealand, even if the road is rather windy and steep in spots. Around each bend there are plenty of photo opportunities.
There are three DOC campgrounds on this side of Coromandel and Fletcher Bay is at the very end of the road. The campground runs up the valley from the beach and can hold up to 360 campers in summer and still be spacious enough to not feel overcrowded because of the way it is divided up by windbreaks.
In winter this means there is an abundance of space, you don’t even have to see your neighbours if you don’t want to! There are 6 toilets and 4 cold showers scattered throughout the camp.
Another bonus, for those without tents or motorhomes, is a backpacker’s lodge complete with 4 bedrooms each with four single bunks, a fully equipped kitchen with two fridge/freezers, also two hot showers and two toilets. All the comforts of home with linen included if needed.
What to do whilst staying up here? The fishing is great either from off the beach, the rocks or by boat (4 wheel drive only to launch your boat as no boat ramp).
A major attraction for Fletcher Bay is the fact that it is where the Coromandel Coastal Walkway to Stony Bay on the Eastern side begins. This walkway can take up to 3 hours each way depending on your level of fitness (you need to be moderately fit as there are some steep spots) and takes in even more spectacular views along the way.
You can do as much or as little of it as you desire. Ten minutes over the hill is sandy Malone Bay, just right for a picnic and swim or snorkel.
So what are you waiting for? Come visit Fletcher Bay and experience this terrific campsite for yourself.