Top 5 Activities in Thames
Thames is a town located on the southwestern border of the Coromandel Peninsula in North Island, New Zealand. The town is the center of the Thames-Coromandel District Council.
In Maori language, Thames is called Hotereni.
The town was believed to be initially built during a gold rush. The first discovery of gold in the area was on August 10, 1867 by William Hunt, in the Kuranui Stream located at the north end of Thames. The riches gold mine fields in history of Thames were the Manukau, Golden Crown, and the Caledonian mines.
At the latter part of the 19th century, Thames has the largest population in New Zealand with 18,000 residents, has more than a 100 hotels, and has three theaters in 1868. For a time, it was thought that Thames would replace Auckland as the major town in the whole area.
At its peak, a lot of people migrated to Thames thus, making Thames the second largest city in New Zealand. But as the amount of gold extracted from the mines diminished, so did the number of inhabitants. Even though there was decrease in the population of Thames, it is still the biggest town in Coromandel.
Many residents of Thames work in tourism and locally owned businesses giving service to the local farming community. I have here a list of the 5 best activities to do while in town.
1. Burke Street Wharf
See the fascinating Burke Street Wharf
Originally named as “Goods Wharf”, Burke Street Warf was built with wooden decking and piles at around 1900.
2. Rapaura Gardens
Visit the Rapaura Gardens which has evolved over more than 45 years.
Rapaura is only a 20-minute drive to north of Thames. The Garden is a 64-acre private estate which is situated in the center of the Coromandel Forest Park. This beautiful place has something for every nature-loving mind.
Around the area, you will see native trees, ferns, exotic plants, birds, ponds, streams, walking trails, and bushwalks. Around the area, you will also see beautiful ponga sculptures. You will also see a waterfall called “The Seven Stairs to Heaven”.
3. Miranda Hot Springs
Have a dip at Miranda Hot Springs
Experience what you really call “relaxation” in thermally heated fresh mineral water at Miranda Hot Springs. The Springs is only a 45 minute drive from Auckland, 60 minutes from Hamilton, and 20 minutes from the Coromandel Peninsula.
Miranda Hot Springs has 3 different pools to suit all swimmers. Their largest pool —which is also accessible by an aqua-lift— is 47 meters by 17 meters with the water's temperature between 36°C and 38°C depending on the season.
Children's pools are cooler in temperature compared to the other pools. There is also an adult-only sauna pool where its temperature ranges from 40°C to 41°C. And guess what, aside from the public pools, they also have four private spa pools.
4. Thames Society of Arts
Housed in a historic building —Thames Society of Arts
Thames Society of Arts is located on the Taruru Road, Thames. The building of Thames Society of Arts was known before as the North School.
The gallery has exhibits of the unique collections of high quality original works by the local artists. Inside this gallery, you will realize how artistic are the people of Thames.
5. Top Shelf Charters
Go fishing with the Top Shelf Charters
Going fishing for the first time? Welcome to the Top Shelf Charters.
Top Shelf Charters bestows upon their clients an excellent day out fishing for families and anglers alike.
They are based in the North Island, New Zealand on the Thames side of the Coromandel Peninsula. The area is approximately one and a half hours drive from both Auckland and Hamilton
Top Shelf Charters is one of the best ways of having fun with both your family and the marine life.