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TRAVEL & LEISURE

Five Rewarding Pit Stops to Make When You're Tackling the Devonport to Takapuna Run

Shake up your coastal run with handmade choccies, historic forts and stand-up paddleboarding.
By Ruby Romanos
March 31, 2021
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By Ruby Romanos
March 31, 2021
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in partnership with

For exercise with a view, the six-kilometre Devonport to Takapuna coastal run is high on the list. It boasts golden, sandy beaches, a couple of hills and some convenient refreshment stops along the way. Together with Adidas, we've compiled a running itinerary to help you balance the high and low energy pleasures of tackling this popular route. Turn up the volume on your beach vibes playlist, get your blood pumping and explore the best of the area at the same time. After reading, launch the map below to plan your own adventure.

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DEVONPORT CHOCOLATES

First stop: the sweetest place on the shore, Devonport Chocolates. Watch the masters at work at this beloved New Zealand chocolate shop as you gear up for a walk or run. This family business takes pride in making every single chocolate and truffle by hand. Make a mental note for later, as it's a great place to grab a last-minute gift. For now, indulge in a choccy or two. The store also sells gluten free, dairy free, sugar free and vegan alternatives, so no one misses out.

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Flickr: Russell James Smith

NORTH HEAD TUNNELS

From Devonport, you can see the mighty Maungauika/North Head Historic Reserve lording over the city. This historic landmark is strategically located at the entrance to Waitematā Harbour and is therefore a prime location for coastal views. After a warm up lap around the flat areas, get your game face on for hill sprints. When you've made your way to the historic tunnels, use the torch on your phone and explore the maze of underground bunkers. Hold tightly to your mate's hand if you're scared of the dark… or spiders.

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CHATEAUBRIANT

After expending energy on those hill sprints, make your way north to Chateaubriant. One of Devonport's best kept secrets, this French cafe is as close as you'll get to French-style cooking for a wee while. Just make sure you time your trip between 7am–3pm, Tuesday to Sunday, when the cafe is open. The crème de la crème of culinary pairings here is the gooey chocolate fondant and a flat white. Opt for takeaway and head to Cheltenham Beach for a mid-run treat with your toes in the sand.

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Rebecca Knapman

FORT TAKAPUNA

Travel 650 metres along the coast and you'll stumble upon a navy cadet base. Here you can explore the defensive network of Fort Takapuna, dating back to the 1800s. O Peretu is the Māori name for this headland, which has been occupied by the New Zealand Defence Force for over a century. The area was once home to German prisoners of war back in 1918 and subsequently used as a hospital in 1919, so it's steeped in history. From this spot you can enjoy stunning views of the Hauraki Gulf/Tīkapa Moana and nearby Rangitoto Island.

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Sam Forson; Pexels

STAND UP TAKAPUNA

Make your way along the coast to Takapuna Beach. If the sea has been calling you, why not hire a stand-up paddleboard? Stand Up Takapuna has board hire options from $35 per hour, and they will give you a private lesson before you head out if you'd like ($40–70). Paddle your way up the beach and finish off with award-winning gelato from Takapuna Beach Cafe. Top tip: ask for a single scoop for $5 and request half-and-half flavours. Our picks are the lemon sorbet and salted caramel.

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In need of a new pair of runners? Take a look at the new Adidas Ultraboost 21 runners here. Launch the map below to start plotting your own running adventure in and around Auckland.

Top image: Vince Traveller; Unsplash

Published on March 31, 2021 by Ruby Romanos

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