I stayed in south Auckland for a few days last week. Hotel owner recommended a day trip to Coromandel. One excellent drive I found is the Thames coast road- roughly a 1hr drive between Thames and Coromandel. It is a scenic drive as most of the experts on this forum already know. What makes it a world class drive to me that day, is that it was a sunny day, and it was at high tide when I drove up north. Because part of the road is practically next to the ocean, ocean waves kept pounding on the shore and splash water on the windshield of my car. We are talking about the kind of splash that I had to scramble to turn on the wipers to the max. Of course you get less of this if you are driving south, or when it is not at high tide. Still, you get to enjoy the scenery and see the road wet.