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Published: January 7th 2011
Yes I am in a kiwi zone - the little sweeties really do live up here in the Bay of Islands...but the only ones I have seen have been on the yellow road signs with a black kiwi on - warning you not to knock em down!!! I know they are elusive...but the Nature Reserve I was walking in today has 100 adults - you would think one of them would have crawled out of the undergrowth to say hello. I
But as usual I am getting ahead of myself and missing out a day. A bit of a cloudy misty hot day yesteday but Patricia took me on a tour down the North Shore Coast visiting all the beaches and bays until we got to Devonport - a lovely town with some nice villas and old buildings along the front. The coast line here is mainly sandstone cliffs - and some volcanic rocks- pumice- which presumably came from Rangitoto volcano - which sits out in the Gulf and you see it from every direction. Little did I know when we set off that I was going to have a test when I got back to find out if I had
learnt all the names of the bays... I think I did rather well!!! From Devonport we got a ferry across to Auckland city - and had a nice wander along the main street and looked in a few shops. It gave me more of an idea of the city of Auckland as last time I was here it wasnt really long enough to appreciate it....and obviously lots going on everywhere for the forthcoming Rugby World Cup.
So it was up early this morning and a mini packing for my little trip to the North of the North Island...so thanks to Patricia and Peter for letting me have their car for a few days and making this possible. I have come to stay in Kerikeri in the Bay of Islands. The drive up was lovely - in many places I thought it was like Scotland or parts of Austria ( without the high mnts)- apart from the fact that the trees are very different. A had a stop off to see the town of Whangarei and waterfalls there.. and well done New Zealand - there are great tourist ifno places everywhere, the roads so far have been very good...and where they
twist and turn over tops and hills there are lots of passing lanes....also there are plenty toilets- very important that is- as well as numerous cafes and places to stop for food.!!! There is so much fruit and veg grown here too - so lots of stalls at the side of the road - avocados (50c = 25p).
So I am staying in Kerikeri Farm Hostel- it an organic farm - so its like a big house set in an orchard - its idyllic. There was a very friendly welcome and I have a nice room leading out onto a verandah and overlooks the pool.. not bad for about £24. There are some very sweet pigs and special breed chooks rooting around the peach and plum orchards. I got settled in and then went off expolring - this is a place where the first missionary settlers came and lts of Maori history too ( and yes Paula - I can see why you liked it here so much when you came)..so I have been down to the old Mission Station - oldest stone house in NZ.. sat overlooking the creek with an iced coffee at the Pear Tree Inn. Then
I wen ta bit off the guide book and looked at a map and thought ok i will drive down this road and see where it leads. It was to Okupitu ( ? i think thats right- these Maori names are not easy to get your tongue round) Bay- and at the end of the road ( driving slowly to avoid any kiwis of course!!) was a lovely bay - boats anchored, a few people swimming and views across the water. And then I spotted a sign saying Aka Aka Nature reserve and a path leading off into the bush - and up hill!!!!! So off I went (taking my 2 mobile fones with me of course,Terry!!) andwas rewarded with fantastic views of the bays on both sides of the peninsula. So come with me this time on a walk in the Bay of Islands...its quite hot and humid today- very hard for me to adjust to it being january!!
I should have a good day tomorrow as I will be up early for a bus tour to the very Northernmost tip of the Island. So thats to come. Nite nite to every one - love to all.
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