Most southbound travellers hurry along Auckland’s southern motorway to Hamilton or turn off to Thames and the Coromandel Peninsula at Pokeno – either way missing out on the modest attractions of the Hunua Ranges and the Seabird Coast on its eastern shore.

Even for Auckland day-trippers the older and more rounded Hunuas play second fiddle to the more ecologically rich Waitakeres, but there are some decent walks around the Hunua Falls and greater rewards further south with excellent migratory seabird viewing and hot pools at Miranda.

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