About Coromandel Discovery Tours + FAQ's:-
Coromandel Discovery (formerly Coromandel Tours) has been running its trademark Coastal Walkway Tour since the mid 1980's. The original owners Rodney & Bridget Carter never would have imagined that 35 years later the business would still travel the same difficult, narrow, gravelly roads to share this hidden gem with young and old alike.
Gavin and Leanne Jeffcoat are the current owner/operators having purchased the business two years ago. Our connection to the Coromandel comes from 150 years of family history centering around 20 acres of land in Colville. We are passionate about the area and are excited to share this very special part of New Zealand with visitors. Our local knowledge and life experiences coupled with work history in transport and customer service, mean we will continually strive to deliver exceptional service to our guests.
We have recently signed up to both the Tiaki Promise and the New Zealand Tourism Sustainability Commitment. While both are long term projects for our business we've already made some changes; Water is now carried in an urn in our van as opposed to plastic bottles and we use our own coffee mugs rather than single use "recyclable" options. More changes are planned over winter that cover the economic, visitor, host community and environmental aspects of our business. We believe this to be a real commitment for us, not just a tick box exercise.
Just as importantly, in our private life on our Colville property, we have in conjunction with Colville Harbourcare and Waikato Regional Council, fenced stock out of the main stream and saltmarsh areas. 4,000 native New Zealand trees have now been planted including harakeke, manuka, cabbage tree, hebe, kahikatea, puriri and kowhai. We are humbled and proud of the results with the rocky base of the stream returning along with the herons, pied stilts, patiki and banded rail. A rare Australasian bittern was also seen flying-by so fingers crossed these species can feel free to breed in their new environment. To lie awake in the evening and early morning and hear a pair of brown kiwi up in the valley is also something pretty special to us.
As Nelson Henderson once said, "the true meaning of life is to plant trees, under whose shade you do not expect to sit".
At Coromandel Discovery we aim to:
- Provide our visitors with an excellent service and an awesome experience while demonstrating we are responsible citizens of this earth, caring for people, the community and the environment.
- Be recognised both within New Zealand and internationally as being a leader in our industry in relation to sustainable practices.
- Be the operator of first choice for clients and staff who have an environmental conscience.
- Ensure we comply with all relevant environmental legislation, and commit to developing robust environmental policies, procedures and other records.
- Continue to develop our New Zealand Sustainability Commitment in terms of the Economic, Visitor, Host Community and Environmental aspects of our business and Tiaki Promise.
- Achieve Qualmark Certification.
We drive a Toyota Hiace 9-seater minivan, which gives a very comfortable ride, has full seat-belts, good leg-room, and twin air-conditioning for your comfort and safety. Our window's are UV treated to prevent sun glare. There is also the option to take the tour in a late model SUV for groups of three or less which adds a more luxury touch to your day.
As your safety is paramount to us we take all of our compliance obligations seriously, as follows:-
1. We both hold current P Endorsements on our licences.
2. All our vehicles operate under a Transport Service Licence and receive Certificates of Fitness every six months.
3. We hold a Standard DOC Concession permitting us to park on Department of Conservation Land.
4. We are both certified First Aiders.
Are we open in winter? Yes, but please ring to book in. Sometimes we are out about and not in the office so please phone 0800 287 432 to inquire about what tours we have coming up.
How to get to Coromandel Town? Coromandel Town is located approximately 3 hours drive from Auckland Airport. Hiring a rental car or camper is often a popular option. We recommend you check the fine-print as a large number of rental companies do not permit their vehicles to be driven on gravel roads north of Colville. Colville is 30 minutes drive north of Coromandel Town and is located on the way to the Coastal Walkway.
The other options are the Intercity Bus Service from Auckland Airport or the 360 Discovery Ferry departing from the Viaduct in Downtown Auckland.
How do I travel to the Coastal Walkway? As mentioned above, some rental companies totally exclude their vehicles from use on gravel roads north of Colville, others void their insurance. These are roads are narrow and winding and are not easy to get accustomed to. We recommend you take a tour with us as this takes the stress out of your day and more importantly, you get to see all the Peninsula and walk the Walkway, oneway.
If I hold a Top Ten Membership Card am I entitled to a 10% discount? We more than welcome bookings from Top Ten Members.
Call in and visit us at our busy site at 105 Wharf Road, Coromandel Town. This is also home to our bike hire, sales and service business, Bush e Bikes. During the summer months enjoy street food from one or other of the trailers operating under The Shady Palm.