Sunday, March 8, 2009
In Hot Water
Not too far out of Auckland - about 20 miles North, is a small settlement called Parakai that loves being in hot water.
Originally feted for its plentiful supply of hot mineral water that flows like wine, the settlement is small, boasting two hot pools; one public, the other a private concern.
Unlike normal hot tap-water, this is liquid from deep underground full of minerals and other composites that get right in to the bones and the body, promoting a surprisingly great feeling of well being in not tooo long a time - about an hour is max (unless you really want to 'prune'.).
The Palms is privately owned and is likely the only hot pool complex in New Zealand that holds a liquor license, which makes it kind of cool to be in hot water up to your neck, with a refreshingly cooling ale right there, beside you on the pool edge.
This wee complex boasts two larger pools; one HOT the other not so hot, and three 'hot tubs' at varying degrees of hotness.
It's comfortably 'homily' atmosphere is promoted by its Asian owners, who have attracted a sizable following of Koreans. But it is also a local favourite, with a small and dedicated cadre of Aucklanders who make the half hour run North up State Highway 16 on a surprisingly regular basis - to take in the waters, as they say.
A great place to 'chill' and let the healing heat work its wonders on aging bones.