Australasia » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo By jenron April 18th 2007 Left Taupo and decided on a scenic route to Raglan via the Tongariro National Park. We headed down the desert road. The sky was lovely and clear with the snow capped volcanoes. We visited the site of the Tangiwai rail disaster where a lehar (volcanic mud slide) destroyed a rail bridge over a river into which, on Chrismas Eve 1953, an express plunged, killing 151 people. After coffees in Ohakune we took the mountain road for spectacular mountain views. Then onto the Waitomo area. The YHA in Waitomo Caves was full so we stayed in a cabin on a campsite in Te Kuiti. It was run by a lovely little old lady of Maori descent who when we told her we were English told us how she loved Bruce Forsyth ! She even asked if I could do an impression - I declined. We stayed in a very small 'cabin' but it was dead cheap and even had a TV ( plus fridge and microwave).