Tea, cake  and boats

A drive around the harbour for tea by the water.

As the seagull flies, Land & Sea Cafe is just a short trip from our home on the northern side of Whangarei Harbour.

Land & Sea Cafe is a block from this beach overlooking Mt Manaia and Bream Head on the northern side of Whangarei Harbour, and Port Marsden and Marsden Point on the southern shore.

But we’re traveling by car and need to allow at least an hour. More, with the obligatory stop at the dog park in town.

It’s a hot summer’s day and we’re well and truly ready for a good cup of tea. Will this cafe serve the best cup of tea in the Whangarei region?

My marks out of 10

Cup scores 4: Noritake cup and saucer. Not a bad drinking experience.

Tea scores 5: Tea Total English breakfast, bag in pot. I’m excited when I hear they use this excellent Auckland blend, but it’s thin and weak and doesn’t live up to expectations. The problem is in the making; one teabag in a largish-pot is never going to deliver a quality brew. A second bag would help – or better still, some of Tea Total’s lovely loose-leaf tea.

Restful setting.

Setting scores 8: Marsden Cove is a Sylvania Waters-style development on the southern side of Whangarei Harbour. It’s man-made canals and large houses are not exactly our cup of tea, so to speak, but it’s nice to be by water and boats on a hot day.

The marina is in the shadow of Marsden Point (famous of being the home of New Zealand’s only oil refinery) and Port Marsden (famous at the moment as a political football). The cafe itself is right in the heart of the marina, which means you can take tea while watching the boats.

The food is good, too; My Beloved and I split a single order of fish and chips (it was huge – see above) so we’ll have room for dessert – carrot cake for me and some sort of lemony thing for Him.

Open after 3pm? Yes, until 8pm.

dogs welcome
Jess enjoys the cool concrete – but the dog in the background is more interested in food.

Dogs welcome? Yes, on the large, shady deck.

Land & Sea Cafe, Bar and Eatery, 8 Rauriri Drive, One Tree Point.

marina entrance
Boats chug in and out of the marina all day.

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