I’m convinced one of the most magical times of day is from sunrise-2 hours after. The sunlight, the dew still on the grass, sheep lazily soaking up the rays or grazing in the pasture (this applies only to NZ of course), and the sense of solitude as the world around you is still mostly asleep. I’ve been itching to get back out to Tunnel Beach here in Dunedin for quite some time, but it’s been closed for lambing since August 31st. That’s two whole months of waiting for the perfect day to trek the one hour long path down to one of the most breathtaking views in Dunedin.
We’re lucky to live an only 5 minute drive from Tunnel Beach, and I’m gearing myself up to wake up at the ungodly hour of 5:00am one of these weekends to go shoot the sunrise. We’re a one car family right now, and with Derik working full time, I don’t normally have a chance to get out and take those lovely sunrise photos. I decided to push my work till later this morning to enjoy an early morning car-ride (dropping D off at work) and a glorious morning hike. The only thing I was missing was a thermos of coffee.
The morning started out absolute perfection, but while I was down wandering around Tunnel Beach, the storm clouds came in ridiculously fast. Welcome to spring on the South Island. Currently as I’m writing this it’s overcast and rainy. Oh well, I’ll snuggle down with a hot mug of coffee and relive the amazing morning hike I had.
TRAVEL TIPS: Plan your visit around low tide or you will completely miss out on the beach part of tunnel beach! The first time we went it was high tide and we could barely get down the tunnel. I was scared the whole time that the waves were going to crush us against the cliffs. Always a fun thing to deal with yes?
Be on the look out for seals and sea lions. I met a lovely friend as I worked my way around to the front of the beach, looking forward to visiting the hidden cave only accessible at low tide. However she was chilling just at the entrance, and there were little shuffle marks showing me that there was another relative of hers inside, so I’ll have to wait until next time to explore the cave.
Wear shoes you can hike in. Although there is a pretty nice gravel path down to the beach, if you want to climb around on the rocks or cliffs you need shoes that help with slipping.