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Published: July 13th 2006
I was left feeling disappointed when leaving Fiji, we both really enjoyed our time there so much. New Zealand had a challenge to impress us to the same degree as Fiji had. The flight was ok and we even watched a good film. When we arrived at the airport and picked up our bags a dog came running over and would not leave one of our bags alone. This dog was one of the ones they have to make sure your not bringing things into the country that are not allowed. New Zealand is extremely strict on what you can enter the country with. It just so happens that the bag in question was the one we used to carry all our food in. It had no food left in it but must have still smelt to a dog trained in catching people trying to bring a number of things in to the country. Once we got through customs, Thommo had to declare a wood carving he had with him, we spent the next two hours in the airport. This time was spent getting quotes from different companies for car and camper van hire and also using the free internet.
We caught the shuttle bus into town, it dropped us right outside the hostel we had booked. Our 8 bed dorm in this hostel was tiny, just enough room to put our bags down and squeeze through to get to the beds. The rest of the hostel was great though. The kitchen was up on the top floor and had a roof terrace to eat your food on, well that is if you could stand sitting in the cold. There was also a bar with a giant screen and a pool table. We managed to catch quite a few footie games , get in England! We also played lots of pool and just generally chilled out while waiting to pick up our campervan on the Monday.
We had a shopping adventure one day to get some warm coats. New Zealand is cold this time of year, even in the North Island! We also visited Warehouse to pick up some cheap jumpers, this place is like a B wise or a Wilko’s back in the UK, for those that have not had the pleasure of going to one it is a big cheap department store that sells near enough everything,
Thommo licking the ice, its designed so your tongue doesnt stick! cool hey
clothes, food, and even furniture. We also picked up some extremely cheap and rubbish looking DVD’s for the cold evenings ahead, that’s right our van has a DVD player!
Most our of time was spent socialising with the people we met in the hostel. There seem to be quite a few people around longer term in Auckland at the moment, which is great as we could meet up with the same people a few times. We were also lucky with the people we had in our room, they slept late and stayed up to watch the football too. One day we took a trip to Minus 5 with Frank and Mike (two lads staying in our dorm), this is a bar made completely out of ice, even the glasses, was really cold but good to experience.
We had to do some planning for our camper van trip around this beautiful country. Although we did not want to over plan, so just read about a lot of places and choose a few places on the North Island to stay at on our way down to the south to catch a ferry to the South Island. We figure we can
do the tourist things in Auckland before we fly out to Oz.
We watched England v.s Ecuador in the early hours of Monday (glad England won!) Thommo then got his head down for some sleep. After packing up and checking out we were picked up by the campervan company and taken to our new home for the next 48days! Looking forwards to a different adventure. The Greyhound in America was ok and did get us from A to B, although you have to go via the rest of the alphabet to get there! Having our own transport should mean we can explore New Zealand and all it has to offer at our own pace.
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