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Eat, stay, play


by Philippa Ross

I had neither the time nor money to take a year out and travel to far flung places around the world; but was in dire need of a break that would bring an element of balance to my busy life.

Bream Head Coast Walks’ promise of an adventure sounded ideal — a chance to eat, play and stay in a place that would nurture me on many levels.

I’d never taken a tramping holiday before and was a tad anxious about whether I’d bitten off more than I could chew.


But staying true to my motto ‘nothing ventured, nothing gained’, I rose to the challenge and managed to convince an equally skeptical friend to throw caution to the wind too.

From the moment we arrived to the time we left, our hostess, Claire Pearson looked after our every need in such a caring, unobtrusive way; giving us the freedom to set the tempo of our own timetable.

Playtime began with a choice of walks across farmland, beach and bush and the reassurance that she was only a phone call away should we need rescuing!

A selection of homegrown fodder for breakfast and lunch along with homemade biscuits to sustain our energy levels, and an evening meal that was all prepared when we returned to our temporary sanctuary, certainly pandered to the eating element of our stay.

The place is nestled in the hills at Whangarei Heads with spectacular views across the bay with only the sound of wildlife to disturb the silence.

Dusk brought more delights as we ventured into a clearing just ten minutes behind the house, armed with a blanket, a bottle of wine and some glasses, we sat and listened to the native nightlife and were privileged to hear kiwis calling to one another.

I finished the day off with a luxurious bubble bath outside under the stars listening to the morporks.

This has to be the ultimate glamping experience.

You can ever order a massage for the end of the day if you want.

I feel totally rejuvenated.

My only regret is that we didn’t come across any mermen blowing conch shells on the beach — but I guess you can’t have it all — and eat it!

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