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September 8th 2008
Published: September 9th 2008
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Mount Mauganui
Just across from Tauranga is Mount Mauganui, we climbed it with Declan & Geoff. It was a beautiful sunny day; of course we took the wrong path and ended going half way around before realizing we weren’t going up so we took a short cut across some fields of sheep. The view at the top was fantastic. Afterwards we had a stroll through Tauranga and a wee drink at the seafront that evening Declan cooked a lovely dinner and yes you guessed it plenty more wine.

This has got to be the best way to see New Zealand and soo much fun. The campsites vary as to what facilities they have but so far so good.

Throughout Rotorua there is billowing steam and a smell of sulpher from the mud pools and the amazing shooting gysers both from the volcanic activity.
This is where the adrenalin began.
Arriving in Rotorua we went straight to the cable car to go up and do the Luge, this is kinda like a toboggan with wheels and goes down a windy path, such a laugh. Then you get a chairlift back up.

The Zorb
A giant bouncy ball about 15 foot across, it has warm water added inside it, and when you get into it they zip it closed and they push you down a hill!!!! You are bouncing inside it sloshing around in the water. Soo funny. You have to see the photos.

Te Puia
A Maori Cultural center in the Whakarewarewa Geothermal valley.
Here we learnt about the Maori cultures and way of life. We even got to see the Kiwi birds. Martyn learnt how to do the Haka and I attempted to learn the traditional welcome dance!!! There geothermal valley is amazing there are bubbling mud pools and the giant Pohutu Geyser with boiling water spurting up 30 meters in the air.

Lake Taupo
This place has the best views a lovely calm lake with the snow-capped mountains in the background.
Had the biggest burgers ever here from ‘Burger fuel’ Lovely.

Mount Ruapehu
The drive here was just amazing; the snow-covered mountains are beautiful. Although you really feel like you are in the out back and when we stopped for a cuppa tea I really was a bit scared of one local, I’m sure she’s lovely though….
We arrived in the lovely Whakapappa it is a really small ski village with a massive castle in the middle but only one small store to buy groceries. We drove up the mountain to the ski slopes. Fantastic!!! The people are lovely and the campsite was perfect with little sites for the vans between the trees. We had an early night ready for some snowboarding. Got up only to discover the wind of 120 miles/hour so all the lifts were closed, No boarding for us!!!!

More adrenalin
Disappointed about the boarding we heading of in our wee van, which we just love by the way. We stopped just outside of Taihape at the Mokai Gravity Canyon (just for a look) some look………… we both done a Swing from a 80 meter high bridge. I will attempt to describe this but we have a video, which you will have to see!!
I almost pulled out of this I was so nervous when they were strapping me up. Now this is like a bungy except you are in a sitting position so are not hanging by the legs and they release the hook so you don’t have to jump, then you plummet towards the river and just above the river then when the rope has gone its full length so you then swing above the river. The wind was gushing by you go so fast. A unique experience but I am so glad I went first as if I had of seen Martyn go I may not of been able to go through with it.
However that was not enough for Martyn he actually done the bungy after this. I felt sick watching him jump off but it was also cool to see him do it. I was so impressed.
The guys who run this pace are so lovely and make you feel as relaxed as is possible in that situation. Definitely recommend it.

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