So I bet you can’t get the Coco Cabana song out of your head now either (you’re welcome) and I bet you, like me, only know the chorus too. And perhaps like me you may not know it’s actually the Copacabana song (details). But I promise you this is the only thing that you are not going to like about the Coco Cabana in Kerikeri.
Our weekend was defined by a series of off the beaten track finds that were remote and peaceful but at the same time so close to where we were going. Like Whangarei we stayed in Kerikeri but never went in to Kerikeri.
We ended up in Kerikeri by way of an engagement party for James cousin at the Pioneer Bar in Waipapa and my birthday. The engagement party set the location, my birthday meant that I could choose anywhere I wanted to stay..
The Coco Cabana Eco Cabin in Kerikeri is just the type of place I love. I tend to prioritise quirkiness and charm over comfort where as James is comfort all the way. It is not all the time that both James and I love the same place but we did here.
Now as you know I love a good entrance way – it really sets the scene for where you are going. In the case of Coco Cabana when I booked on Airbnb they apologised for the mess on the drive on the way down (not theres) but to me it added to the sense of a journey. I wouldn’t call it mess so much as I’d call it a working site in rural Northland. A rusted car, a shed with open sides revealing all manner of interesting artefacts and implements. It’s a drive way that is interesting, already it speaks of something different. It’s also obviously a shared driveway – tucked well of the main Waipapa Road. A tip to the wise – it’s slightly hard to find at midnight for a taxi driver with two drunk navigators trying to give directions to a rustic hideaway in the middle of the nowhere that they’d only been to once.
About 600m down the split driveway forks off and there is a small sign directing you to the Eco Cabin. Down past the owners house who we didn’t actually meet but waved out to us and then at last you are in a little clearing. Trees all around you, water flowing in the nearby creek, cows mooing, birds chirping and in the middle the Coco Cabana sitting there with weathered, comfy old sofa’s on the porch below the fairy lights.
I was like a kid in a candy store and literally didn’t know what to check out first. I opted for the stream first because well it was hidden and also more boringly looking like it may rain soon.
Slowly tumbling water through the lush, secluded clearing gave way to a bigger water hole. It’d be great for swimming in summer I thought until a momentary flash of James uncle getting bitten by an eel at the stream just up the road. Hmm, still probably worth it.
Back to the cabin to start exploring.
Solar powered and with a long drop (but not the smelly kind), the information sheet in the cabin tells us that not only may we hear Kiwi at night but also that is not a 5 star resort.
And that is what I love the most is that they’ve not succumbed to any of the temptation to tart it up and make it into one!
It’s built out of reclaimed materials and has a thrown together, eclectic style that I adore with colour and texture everywhere.
It has two fireplaces (one inside and one out) and we were toasty as all night.
The wardrobe is fashioned out of an old branch, the couches are the kind of comfy that only age can give and the cutlery tray is just a little too big for the space that it’s in.
The bed is big and comfy and the shower warm with an ionic power shower filter (I had to google that one – basically cool balls in the shower head).
It’s roomy, comfortable, quirky, rustic and completely off the grid – and I saved the best for last – it’s only $63 a night.