Alongside (Paihia): This awesome cafe/ bar is situated over the water and overlooks the Bay of Islands. We came here on a number of occasions for a coffee or glass of wine and the views just didn’t get boring! The menu looked really good too, but we didn’t eat here!
YHA Juno Hall (Waitomo): Primarily a hostel, we stayed in the campsite and were able to use all of the facilities. The manager, Dave, was amazing and went out of his way to be helpful! (and his dog Max was a cutie!) When we arrived we were told about a shuttle that would be coming in 5 minutes to take people to Roselands Restaurant a few minutes down the road, where we could get a buffet meal for $10 (and beers and wine for $5!) – this was a great way to meet other people staying at the hostel and we had a great night! The food was real comfort food too – beef stew, rice and roast potatoes – perfect after our Tongariro hike !
Beachside Holiday Park (Paihia): We stayed here after freedom camping for a few nights with very limited facilities (aka just a toilet!) and when we came here it was amazing! The facilities were excellent, with rapid wifi, newly decorated toilets and showers (and hairdryers!), immaculate grounds, a great kitchen and BBQs to use and an awesome outdoor social area – I would go as far as to say they were the best facilities we had during our whole 6 weeks in NZ! It cost $20 a night for a powered campsite, which was cheaper than many paces we had stayed!