Blogs from Ohakune, Taupo, North Island, New Zealand, Oceania


Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Taupo » Ohakune April 9th 2012

New Zealand – Taupo, Rotorua and Maketu - All of a sudden I had become chief Plunkett and to celebrate my achievement I rafted the world’s highest commercial white water rapids and then jumped from a plane , just like any normal day really! I’m on the move again and heading to a sleepy little out crop called Maketu for Stray’s Cultural stop, as mentioned previously I’d been advised that this was a waste of time and money so after making numerous attempts at finding alternative accommodation and trying to seek help from Miss P who quite frankly couldn’t give a sh*t I had no choice but to head to Maketu. There is nothing to do there apart from this staged Cultural night and for the pleasure they hit you for $70 to watch it, bargain ... read more
Maketu - What a Sunset
Taupo - Here comes my ride
Taupo - Some of the crew in the Limo after the Skydive

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Taupo » Ohakune January 15th 2012

The booze cruise in Raglan was cancelled so we ended up just chilling in the lounge, drinking, playing cards, and watching movies. We were basically staying in the middle of the woods (more or less) so we didn't need too much more to entertain us. Next day we left bright and early and headed to Waitomo, home of limestone caves and blackwater rafting (which I think is actually caving...still not sure). I decided to take the action packed tour with 20m abseils (aka repelling), waterfalls and small spaces. When I first had to climb in the tiny hole to enter the cave, then repel 20m I was seriously asking myself "what the hell have I gotten myself into?". After repelling down the first waterfall I was confident this was a fantastic idea. The guide was really ... read more
Maori Dance
Bonfire at Maketu
Moon at Maketu

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Taupo » Ohakune January 9th 2012

2 blogs for the price of one today - cos took lots of photos! Had breakfast in Taupo this morning before heading off on a trek to the Huka Falls,stopping at Honey Hive (to learn all about the healing properties of (Manuka) honey. The trek was fairly arduous but worth as the river/falls were spectacular. Then we headed for The Craters of the Moon walk,named for its other-worldly atmosphere because it's an area of geothermal activity: complete with bubbling crates,mud pools,steam vents and so. After that it was back for a relax in the hot tub(yes,another one) before heading off for our Maori experience. More to come... read more
Huka Falls...........
Gran at Huka Falls
Craters of the Moon,Taupo

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Taupo » Ohakune January 8th 2012

Don't know where Ohakune came from - we're in Wairakei! Got up this morning in Whangamata and it was still raining. Nevertheless,we made use of the hot tub on the (covered) balcony - I felt a bit "Essex"! Then we went to St. Joseph's in Waihi - still raining! Had breakfast and walked around the disused open-cast goldmine (in the rain - as you will see from the pics!). Saw some intersting birds. Then we headed for Taupo via Tauringa and Rotorua - didn't notice the sulphur smell! The Wairekai Resort where we are staying is pretty extensive with a 9 hole golf course,gym,squash court,pool, geothermal spa waters - so we had our 2nd "hot tub" experience of the day (or ever,for me!) A few things planned for tomorrow: Huka Falls,Craters of the Moon,Maori experience. To ... read more
Waihi open-cast gold mine....

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Taupo » Ohakune December 6th 2011

Wednesday 30th Nov I arrive in Auckland airport around 10am feeling pretty damn good after my ten hour sominex induced coma and a fairly decent 'plane food' breakfast. I head to my hostel in Ponsonby which, as it turns out, is one of the nicest areas in Auckland. Good choice me. The hostel is great with lovely staff and free towels!! When you're traveling through hostels, it's the small pleasures that are the most comforting. After freaking out about visible dust thought the viewfinder on my camera, I head into the city to find a camera shop to get it cleaned up. Got there, turned out it was just on the mirror (not the sensor) and so no massive expenditure of money necessary. Em and Phil head up to meet me in Ponsonby. It was so ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Taupo » Ohakune October 24th 2011

Well what a weekend to be in NZ!!! After a full week in Auckland (probably a little long in a city for this country girl but absolutely worth it for the way it ended!) I topped it off with a trip to Eden Park for the bronze final of the rugby (couldn't afford the $900-plus for the actual final!). The match didn't disappoint - aside from the end result - but the atmosphere was amazing, the weather was perfect and I got some good photos to boot! The scariest moment was soon after kick-off when Shane Williams (my favourite!) was nearly split in half by a crushing tackle. The man must be made of steel to have recovered, but recover he did to score Wales' first try! Just a shame, especially after the final 5 minutes ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Taupo » Ohakune October 3rd 2011

Finally found somewhere with WiFi! Where was I? oh yes, Auckland to Hamilton. Jo has very kindly lent us her car for the week so all 4 of us set off at 11:30 am. George driving the first leg. 10 minutes into the journey and a call from Jo made us stop in our tracks. The only job I'd been given by George was to look after the Tickets (3) for the Wales vs Fiji match and I'd forgotten them! Needless to say after many insults we turned round and I collected the tickets. Arrived in Hamiton by 1:30, parked and found the Corner Bar. We had arranged to meet Bex Hayman (sister of Carl, former All Black) and we had a great time watching the first 2 matches on the many TV's (including Georgia vs ... read more
Wales vs Fiji

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Taupo » Ohakune October 3rd 2011

With the days walk cancelled it was decision time on what to do with the day. George & Ross were up early and came back with a take out breakfast. We then set out for Napier to visit vineyards in and around Hawkes Bay (btw photos to be added later when I can work out how to do it). John H took the first leg driving the 240 kms. What an unforgettable experience. I'm only just recovering. The fact that we drive on the same side of the road seemed to be lost on our driver as when he told to go right he immediatley did so right down the slip road on the opposite side of the road facing oncoming traffic. We can only hope they thought he was a mad frenchman. If that wasn't ... read more
Lunch at The Mission Vineyard
Mt Ruapehu

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Taupo » Ohakune July 31st 2011

Happy August!!!! I can not believe that it is already August, I feel like it was yesterday that I had left the United States. To celebrate our last week of July here in New Zealand me and six of my girlfriends went to Lake Taupo for the weekend, which is a four hour drive north of Wellington. On Friday afternoon we picked up our amazing eight person silver mini van. This was the first time that we had to deal with the driving rules here in New Zealand, the theme for the weekend was.... KEEP LEFT. The driver on the other side of the car and driving on the opposite side of the road was tricky on the mind for the first hour or two of the trip but then it became much easier to deal ... read more
Hot Stream
Big Water Fall
Where MR.FRODO destroys the ring

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Taupo » Ohakune February 1st 2011

Thursday 25th November 2010 (Waitomo – Taupo) Walking around more caves in the morning helped to wake us up and after a long day on the bus we arrived at the Huka Falls which had an immense force as the water ploughed over the edge and created a really beautiful sight. Joanne was picked up for her Skydive, and managed to get Richard a space to watch. They showed the group a video and we all decided to jump from 15,000ft (even Sharon who was petrified). As Joanne had sky-dived before she decided against the pricy photo/video package and enjoyed the jump even more for just taking in the experience and the views instead of staring at a photographer for the whole of the free-fall. Back on the ground her trusty photographer (Richard) and videographer (Joe) ... read more
The gang
Huka Falls
Getting ready

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