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Published: December 19th 2010
Ninety mile beach
Actually 90km beach is more accurate!
Saturday we headed up to Ninety Mile Beach - a registered highway suitable for rugged vehicles. We probably should of listened to that last bit as Jamies poor car got stuck in soft sand after only a few metres! We did have a stroll & a paddle on the beach first though. We stuck to the roads after that & headed up to Cape Reinga where the Tasman Sea meets the Pacific Ocean & the spirits of the dead depart from this world to the next. We arrived in thick fog but luckily it was a bit clearer out by the lighthouse at the tip. After the compulory photos by the signpost we headed back down & round to Spirits Bay, or rather the far end of Spirits Bay which starts just along from the Cape. This was a beautiful pink beach, coloured by many fragments of shell littering the beach. Again we had the beach to ourselves to admire the pale sand & huge waves.
On the way back to the hostel we stopped off to do some horse trekking, we only had enough cash to pay for an hour but I think we were out longer than that
Cape Reinga lighthouse
& compulsory photo with the signpost
in the end. It was a lovely gentle ride through the forest with a lot of weaving between the trees and up & down steep banks. Lovely horses but they did want to go a bit faster much of the time!
Sunday was mostly driving. The weather Thursday onwards hadn't been that great but we had managed to avoid the worst of the drizzle & even got some sunshine on the beach! Sunday it just rained non-stop, but that's ok when you're driving. We broke our journey at Whangarei where we went to Zion Wildlife Gardens
to visit the lions & tigres. This is the home of The Lion Man who you may have seen on tv & also Zion, the lion who played Aslan in the recent Narnia films. I have mixed feelings about this place. Many of the cats have been saved from worse places & they seemed as happy as caged beasts can be (except the black leopard who hated the rain!) but they hand feed the animals & many were hand raised & part of me feels that this is wrong for such intelligent & wild beasts. They really understand and care for their cats though and
Getting towed after the car got stuck on 90 Mile Beach!
considering the alternatives this is a great place for them.
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