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Published: August 19th 2010
The Famous Hole
Approaching island, the other tour boat was there
Second try successful. What a great morning on 'dolfin adventure' boat (see previous blog). I decided to use the voucher from two days ago and repeat the boat tour. If you ever come to Paihia I recommend this tour company because if you do not see dolfins they give you a voucher to return again, and there is no timelimit. The longest record for keeping and using the ticket is 14 years.
And because we only saw dolfins during the last part of trip and didn't have time to set up swimming with them, we all got a voucher to return. That means I get three trips for the price of one, if I come back with the ticket. I can use it in Auckland and get half price for that boat tour.
The biggest thrill for me was going through the Hole in the Rock. Two days ago the sea was too rough and we didn't go near it. Today was perfect, calm sea, low tide, adventurous captain 'Annie'.
I wasn't fussed if we saw dolfins or not. We spent most of morning sailing around the islands looking for them. We stopped and disembarked on one large island with cafe.
Ready to go
Boat slows down to see if its safe to pass through. Luckily sea was relatively calm
On the way back, the boat slowed down and we were surrounded by a pod of dolfins. I took dozens of photos and deleted most of them because I got just water. Surprisingly, a few decided to show off right at my end of the boat and I have a good picture of buddy's belly. The captain told us to keep our vouchers because we had to return to harbour to keep to their schedule. Perfect. Who knows, I might return during their summer months and really contemplate swimming with dolfins when the water is warm.
Next day, I'm back in Auckland. Yes, this trip is quickly evapourating. I did not have the time to really talk about all of my adventures. There are things I will remember with the prompt of the photos. Cala lilies grow like weeds in the fields, spring is coming with the pink trees and orange-blossomed flame trees. I've met wonderful people along the way and will be forever grateful for all the 'travel angels' that show up when needed and freely give good advice such as how to get to car rental in Auckland airport. (long story there)
Traveling is wonderful way to get
back to yourself. You leave the trappings of work and habbits and responsibilities and move into a fluid existance. I tried to plan little on this trip. There were about five goals and I did them all. I'm proud of my independence (two separate weeks with rental car) and glad I shook things up by setting out with absolutely no idea where I'd end up for the night. Hotels are the loneliest places, but good to pamper yourself. Hostels are great because you can get groceries and cook meals with people from around the world. Travelers are happy to share experiences and tips, and its funny when you meet the same people further down the road. Service program has been terrific and I have met good friends along the way and hope to see them in the future.
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