The Manifold Guide to Summer
It’s summertime! Which to us means sandy toes, itchy bites, sticky ice cream fingers, tired muscles and fish & chip wrappers - each a telltale sign of a summer well spent in Taranaki.
Running a coworking space we get to hear all about the brilliant things our members get up to on their evening and weekend so we decided to pull together some of the better little secrets we’ve been turned onto this summer.
We hope you enjoy!
Proof & Stock, Cutfield Road (between St Aubyn St and Devon St West). Awesome little set up run out of a home garage where they roast their own beans on a Turkish Roaster that sits at the back of the garage. Hands down the best coffee in New Plymouth (in my humble opinion!).
Where else can you go for a morning and lunchtime surf and still fit in 8 hours of work? We’ve got such an amazing coastline right on our doorstep! For those quick sessions we just tip to Back Beach - the saviour of many a New Plymouth surfer as it seems to pick up even the most modest of summer swells and works on north through to south east winds. The wave type depends on the banks but there is usually something on offer for all levels. Water temperatures are 19 degrees right now so ‘out there!’
My favourite lunch spot has to be Takasago Sushi (180 Devon St E). After moving here from Vancouver, Canada 7 years ago, New Plymouth sushi didn't compare to what I was used to eating. I had all but written off the local options until Takasago opened! It was the first time I had actually seen ingredients like soft-shelled crab, tuna (that wasn't from a can), and smoked eel in sushi locally. They have beautifully fresh options and lots of creative twists. It's run by lovely people and you can get a good feed for $10-12. It pays to get in early right at noon as they are a busy little shop and often sell out of the best pieces! There's a small shared table outside otherwise, grab you lunch and head to the walkway to enjoy!
Mountain Biking is becoming a huge sport with terms being coined like “It’s the new skiing”.
The place to go in New Plymouth is the bike park at Lake Mangamahoe located on Plantation Rd.
There are well kept trails catering to all levels with good signage to help you get around. There is not much elevation so the climbs are not particularly long meaning the downs are pretty short too but there are plenty of features to keep you interested. Some of the trails offer great views of the mountain and other are a mix of pine and native forest.
Check out the New Plymouth Mountain Bikers Club webpage for trail maps and events
https://npmtb.co.nz/ Craig Tibbitts
I have only recently discovered The Hour Glass’s excellent range of tapas. I’ve visited in the past to partake of their wide selection of craft beers and other eclectic beverages but joined friends there last week for food and found that every dish we ordered was exceptional. I’m looking forward to taking my wife there on our next night out.
The Khyber Pass on Mount Taranaki: This is a great little alternative route to the top of the mountain if you want to avoid the summit climb crowds, the Puffer and the scree. You go up the Razorback Ridge, and this unmarked path starts from the Round the Mountain track. It goes to the left of Humphries Castle and winds its way up the mountain to the bottom of the Lizard. And it does not just have to be about getting to the summit - I often just head up there on a good day and enjoy the stunning views and feeling like a small dot in this big beautiful world we live in.
For after work drinks on a Friday it’s gottta be Mike’s Bistro at 186 Devon St E. Along with the full range of Mike’s beers you’ll find many other fantastic craft beers with something like 26 different beers on tap. It’s always fun and social and the food is pretty great too!
There are many good places for freediving off the coast of New Plymouth. The Tapuae Marine Reserve is one of the best places. You can swim with New Zealand fur seals at seal rock, explore the sea caves at the base of Paritutu, or chill out in the lagoon hidden at the back of Pararaki island. This time of year there's also baby fur seals basking on the Sugarloaf islands. There's a whole world to be discovered just below the sealine, and it's well worth a trip.
If you’re looking for something a little different a short stay at the wonderful Matchbox, only minutes from the heart of New Plymouth town centre, should be high on your list. This quirky, cleverly designed, tiny home is full of wonderful surprises and is nestled in a private, green setting - perfect for a long summer evening spent sipping wine with someone special.