Blogs from North Island, New Zealand, Oceania - page 5


Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Auckland March 2nd 2014

We've been a bit of a lazy bloggers recently, mostly because we are currently camping around the North Island of New Zealand, and thus have very limited wifi access, but also because we have just been quite busy taking in the wonders of this place. Arriving in Auckland almost two weeks ago truly felt like a return to civilization; after all the Spanish and French speaking countries it was so nice to have English spoken all around us, and being able to easily communicate whatever we need to. And after nearly four weeks of island hopping in French Polynesia, it was a nice change to be in a big city again. We stayed in Auckland three full days, rented a room in the house of a nice and fun Maori lady, Ruth, in a peaceful suburb ... read more
hiking in Auckland
view over Wellington
berry picking :)

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Auckland » Massey March 1st 2014

Today we all helped Joseph and Stacey move from Hamilton to Massey in Auckland ready for Joseph's new job starting on 3 March! All went well but we are all worn out!! Patrick and I drove from Whangarei and met Jennifer and Paul at the new house. Joseph and 3 VERY NICE helpers packed the first load on Friday night and Joseph drove up on Saturday morning and collected Claire on the way who had the key! Then we unpacked, had a cup of tea, and Joseph, Patrick and Paul drove down to Hamilton - collected second truck load with Patrick driving Stacey, Thomas and the cat. Jennifer, Claire and I unpacked, moved things around, made beds, cleaned etc. We unpacked the second load, had a cup of tea, and then Joseph drove back to Hamilton, ... read more
The living area
the first boxes ready to be unpacked
Quick to unload

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Rotorua February 28th 2014

After lunch we drove down to Rotorua, where we would be meeting the Maori tribe chief of Ohinemutu and be given a tour before having some traditional food called hangi back at the hostel. We got into Rotorua about 4 pm, with Simon still dressed as tigger. We persuaded him to go up to the bride (a wedding party was taking photos near the lake where we parked up) and get a photo taken with her. As we were waiting, a car pulled up with a man who had Maori tattoos covering his face asking who we were waiting for. We later found out this was one of the chief's cousins or brothers (can't remember which). We moved to the toilets to wait for Chief. He turned about 10 minutes later. We introduced ourselves to each ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Bay of Plenty » Tauranga February 28th 2014

24thFebruary Tauranga, New Zealand Our first view of New Zealand is the approach to the city of Tauranga past Mount Maunganui on our port side and berthing in the port of Tauranga. Tauranga is the largest city in the Bay of Plenty and is a fast growing metropolis; its port is the largest in terms of gross export tonnage. The city is known for its export of avocados and kiwifruit. In Maori, Tauranga means ‘an anchorage’ or ‘resting place’ and it is believed that the Maoris settled here in the late 12th Century having made the sea crossing from Polynesia. Captain Cook (1879) was so impressed by the agricultural riches when he arrived on the Endeavour he named the area Bay of Plenty. Settlers took land that belonged to the Maoris which led to the ‘Land ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Auckland » Central February 28th 2014

25th February Auckland, New Zealand Today we lose some friends that we have made crossing from San Francisco to Auckland, thanks John and Heather for the laughs at trivia and the launderette (in joke). We arrived in Auckland quite early as this is a turnaround day, some 400 people leave to be replaced by who knows!! Our berth is in the heart of the city harbour so anybody not on an organised trip has no trouble finding their way into the shopping areas. A favourite for yachting, Auckland is known as the ‘City of Sails’ and has one third of the countries population. The city has become the biggest Polynesian city in the world; many of the residents are from the Polynesian areas of the South Pacific and latterly are from Asia giving Auckland ... read more


Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Wanganui February 27th 2014

Left Napier in a more mundane form of transport - our campervan. Lovely quiet road skirting the Tongariro National Park. Great views of the volcano and seems like only yesterday that we were doing the Tongariro Crossing (not 5 years ago!). Although the weather is hot - 30 degrees - there was snow on the mountain tops. Now heading for Pipiriki along a narrow road bounded by a deep gorge. Lyn driving and fortunately didn't meet any traffic. On the way we noticed several little areas where we could pull off the road for an overnight free camp. However we needed to find the Whanganui River Adventure HQ so pressed on. So glad we did as they have a beautiful flat small campsite just above the river and surrounded by tree ferns - only one other ... read more
Room with a view
Lyn with half a Waka
Relaxing by the river before we start

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Wellington February 26th 2014

20 fev On quitte Nelson en traversant la region vinicole de Marlborough. Les vignes sont bien fournies dans les rangees qui comblent les champs. On en tirera du vin blanc magnifique qui fait la reputation des nombreux vignobles de la Nouvelle Zelande. Mais le temps nous manque pour y deguster leurs millesimes... car nous filons vers Picton ou nous prendrons la route maritime qui nous permettra de rejoindre Wellington sur l'ile du Nord. Wellington. Comme la recette de poulet. Tiens donc. Et comme les razoirs aussi. Ah non... ca c'est Remington. ... On stationne finalement notre voiture dans le ventre du traversier... avec 1 heure de retard. Une histoire d'overload parait-il. La bete metallique est enorme avec ses restos, lounges... et tits sacs a vomit facilement accessibles. On passe par des couloirs marins, contournant des iles ... read more
La traversee
La mouette et le mauvais texto
Giant squid

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo Caves February 26th 2014

The next morning we left Raglan to head down to the Waitomo caves. Simon, our tour leader was dressed in a tiger onesie because it was his birthday. These caves have glow worms which has made the sites famous. They look like LED lights or stars in the roof when. All other lights have been switched off. G-Adventures booked with one particular company where you can do tubing (also known as black water rafting) or abseilling down through the caves in darkness and seeing g the glow worms glow. I chose tubing, because I kind of hurt my right wrist kayaking (maybe RSI playing up or something) so decided abseilling was not for me. So we got to Waitomo caves area. Some people were dropped off as they were doing the Spellbound tour, where you walked ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Taupo February 25th 2014

After leaving Rotorua we drove to Haku Falls, a gorge where the river narrows and 200,000 litres of water run over the falls per second. The water was an incredible light blue colour with white water rapids in places. After getting some nice pictures we headed for Lake Taupo (pronounced Toe-Paw by the locals). Once we had checked in we went for a walk with Vicky, Tayla, Leanne, Shantelle and Billie. We all ended up getting KFC then bought mixers from the supermarket and started drinking quite early at 5pm. At one point we had 17 people in our 8 bed dorm all sat in a circle playing ring of fire. Tim was the last to put his hand down on the floor for thumb master and denied it, gave us a demonstration of what he ... read more
Haku Falls
Coolest McDonalds Ever in Taupo
Lake Taupo

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Wellington February 25th 2014

As we cruised into the capital city of New Zealand, Wellington, our driver Bridge did a lap of the fairly small city to show us the main attractions. We checked into Base Hostel and then me, Freeman, Ali and Craig went to the museum. The first part taught us about all the fault lines and earthquakes that New Zealand has and how this shaped the mountainous landscape. We then went to the sea animals area which had huge bones of whales, the worlds largest squid body and other cool animals. Other floors taught us about the history of immigration to New Zealand and there was a lot on British history as we had a big impact on their country. We reached the viewing platform on the roof which had good views but this was ruined by ... read more
Museum - Sea life section
Little and large stingrays

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