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Crossing the Coromandel Peninsula from Coromandel Town to Whitianga is undoubtedly scenic, but we were oblivious to this, as heavy rain squelched any ideas we might have had of seeing anything.  But fortunately the rain let up by the time we reached Whitianga, where we stopped for lunch.

Driving to Whitianga
Driving to Whitianga
Whitianga Map
Whitianga Map

The town of Whitianga (Maori pronunciation note – “Wh”’s at the beginnings of words are pronounced like softish “F”’s; go figure) is located on Mercury Bay on the east side of the peninsula.  Mercury Bay received its name courtesy of Captain Cook, who observed the Transit of Mercury from this location in 1769.  The “Transit of Mercury” is the passing of the planet Mercury across the disk of the sun, which is observed in much the same way as a solar eclipse (which it sort of is, though it doesn’t eclipse very much).  Earlier on the same expedition, Cook had observed the Transit of Venus from Tahiti (extremely rare for both events to happen during the same year), a primary goal of the expedition.  But he also spent a lot of time naming stuff.

We hung around for awhile at a park on Whitianga Harbour (an appendage of Mercury Bay, where many people like to park their boats).

Moored Boats, Whitianga Harbour
Moored Boats, Whitianga Harbour
Nella and Connie
Nella and Connie

Then we went into town and found lunch at a café, where we dined al fresco, the cold weather notwithstanding (mainly because all the indoor tables were occupied; but at least L&P was in plentiful supply).

Beverages at Café
Beverages at Café
Connie with "Big Bikkie" Ice Cream Bar
Connie with "Big Bikkie" Ice Cream Bar

After lunch, we continued on around Whitianga Harbour and Estuary (a 45-minute detour) to go see about a place called Cathedral Cove that we’d heard about.

More Photos:
Wharf at Harbour
Wharf at Harbour
Fishing Limit Sign
Fishing Limit Sign

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