The Three Sisters

Driving south from Otorohanga we made a stop in Piopio for lunch at the Fat Pigeon Cafe. This is such a popular place for travelers to make a stop. It was packed inside and out.

The waiting time was disclosed when we lodged our order and was pretty accurate. The staff were doing a great job under pressure.

We concluded that many may be on their way to Womad, the annual music festival being held in New Plymouth that weekend.

Piopio has a lovely little village green these days. I’ve never noticed it before.

On to Tongaporutu, 15 kilometres south of Mokau.

Growing up in Taranaki I’ve travelled this road many times, and driving south, I’ve always been fascinated by the row of little baches (beach/holiday houses) along the banks of the Tongaporutu River.

Passing through though, we had never struck the tide right, or didn’t have the time, to walk out to the river mouth to see the Three Sisters.

Photo taken from the bridge as evening fell

This time we resolved to stay the night in the Domain (freedom camping (#4104 NZMCA). I had checked the tide times before arriving fortunately as there is no wifi coverage here. Well, a little, but it’s unreliable and sporadic.

Two hours either side of low tide is the time to go.

When we arrived there were only a couple of vans, but by the evening about fifteen were parked up.

It’s grassed uneven ground and parts may not be suitable all year round, but it’s a popular stop over.

Later, as I walked back to the main road to take the above photo from the bridge, I noticed one of the houses had this fascinating collection of footwear on it’s fence…

Looking back along the line of houses toward the bridge. Because the houses are right on the bank, you can’t actually walk along their frontages without invading their privacy …

The view from the Domain…

Sunset that evening from the Domain …

This info board explains who the Three Sisters are and how they were born. It’s a shame the ancient cave carvings have disappeared …

Next morning we set off to see them for ourselves. It’s probably only a leisurely 15 minute walk.

The cliffs are quite spectacular…

The river widens and the cloud reflections against the black sand on the shoreline are impressive …

And then we reach the open sea where a fisherman brings in his catch …

A peek to the left and we see what we’ve come for in the distance …

We walk closer to the large rock formation and discover the tunnels eroded by the ocean …

And the beginnings of another …

We see evidence of the coastal erosion as we look back at the cliffs …

The monolithic structures further on are what have come to be known as the Three Sisters, now multiplied …

They are very impressive.

It’s well worth waiting for the tide and taking the walk.

I’m glad we decided to stop over.

1 Comment

  1. Very rewarding stop over. Excellent capturing. It certainly is amazing – we are going to have to do it again as we loved it so much.

    Like

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