Saturday, February 28

New Zealand: Volume Five

19th Feb:
After a massive 390 kilometer (about 242 miles) drive from the Coromandel to the south of Northlands and staying in the small town Dargaville, we drove (lol) up to Waipoua Forest to see the Kauri trees.
Now these can grow to be massive. The Photo's just don't do these guys any justice. The only way to see how bog these guys are is too look at my speck of a Dad:


And that one isnt the biggest. The biggest one you can't fit in the photo, at least not to give it the justice it deserves. But here are the 'Four Sisters':


Saw some great scenery while continuing up the Northlands, heading for Manganoui.


20th: Total washout today :/ But it was still an interesting day as we went to Butlers Point to learn about the Whaling in the museum there.


No pictures of the muesum as they weren't allowed. Well, they were I guess as the other people in the group were taking them. I just took a picture of this tree really. I thought it was cool.


21st: Today was our trip to Ninety Mile Beach and Cape Reinga, the northen most point of NZ. One hell of a trip. You have to do it.


One of the stops was at Rarawa Beach. Now this photo does not show the true colour of the sand, as it was white. Just like flour, really :)


And this next picture shows the most wonderful place to have lunch. EVER. Tapotupota Bay.


The light house at Cape Reinga. And where the Tasman Sea and Pacific Ocean collide!


Tobogganing down the giant sand dunes at Te Paki!


And finally, Nintey Mile Beach.


22nd: Headed down to Pahia for the last few nights of our holiday. For the rest of the evening, we visited the Waitangi Treaty Grounds.


We also drove up Mount Bledisloe, which tells us that London is 7833 miles beneath it:


23rd: Headed out on a cruise of the Bay of Islands.


We went through the 'Hole in the Rock' and saw a pod of dolphins.


24th: Went to KeriKeri for some much needed shopping. Well, I wanted to buy a new carry on bag for the trip home as I didnt think I would be able to get everthing in my suitcase! (So glad I did, i was spot on for the weight of my suitcase at the aiport - PHEW)

25th: Took the Paihia ferry to Russell to do a little exploring.


And to sample a Burger Ice Cream. Oh yes. Very fatty, but very YUMMY.


Took a stroll in the evening on the Waitangi track to the Mangrove swamps. We saw some Pukeko!


These Mangrove trees have their roots sticking straight up out of the ground, so that when high tide comes in, they don't drown!


26th: Last morning today. Said goodbye to Pahia and went for a quick visit to Whangeri before heading through Auckland to the hotel near the airport.


And that was our adventure :)

Wednesday, February 18

New Zealand: Volume Four

7th + 8th Feb:
OMG it was so frigging hot in Rotorua. I swear it must have been 30 degrees or more. Unfortunately, we chose to go to Wai-O-Tapu on the 8th. You can't predict the weather, but to a Thermal Park on the hottest day isn't exactly good. But what the hell, it was bloody beautiful there :)


Here you can see 'Devils Bath'. Yes. Illuminous green :D So much brighter in real life. For the sciencey folks, its this colour due to the mineral elements Sulphur and Ferrous Salts. The next photo is of the Alum Cliffs with a 700 year old acid lake next to it.


I loved the mud pools. Probably due to the sound more than anything else. Yes, i am that childish but the random way the mud popped up was awesome. And the guyser behind me is Lady Knox! Its set off at 10am everyday witht he help of a few grams of soap :)

9th: Headed towards Lake Taupo today and on the way, stopped to take a look at and stroll by the Huka Falls.


Taupo itself is wonderful. The town is pretty big, loads of shopping and the lake is massive! We met some locals:

And this next picture I believe is of 'Mount Doom' from Lord of the Rings. We sailed by on the way to look at some Maori rock carvings.


10th: Leaving Taupo and the rain behind, we headed for Naiper, stopping off to nose around Hastings too.


Both Hastings and Naiper have lovely Art Deco style buildings. This is due to an earthquake way back in the 30's which pretty much destroyed most of the buildings in the area. So the buildings were rebuilt in this style and they look beautiful. Here's hoping theres no more big earthquakes in this area for a long time.


11th - 15th: Arrived in Giborne today to meet our relatives! It was so great to see my great Uncle Dave and Great Aunt Sylvia and of course, Jessie their wonderful dog!


Had a great few days here. We went to see Captain Cook's monument and Young Nicks Statue.


16th: Next stop, Tauranga.


This is a beach in the Bay of Penty. Easily my most favourite of the holiday.


17th + 18th: Whitianga / Coromandel.


Erm. I don't have a lot to say about Whitianga. Nice little town. Pleasant surroundings. But I loved most of the Coromandel. Particularly walking on this beach:


Where we met Mr. Squid,


Coromandel Town itself was very quaint and beautiful. We had a great meal there after we did some exploring.

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