Blogs from Waitomo, North Island, New Zealand, Oceania


Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo March 3rd 2020

I spent the last ten days or so with an older couple in their massive house in the woods. I did a lot of painting and some concrete-wheeling for them, but generally, I was just vibing. Two families of wild birds would come visit twice a day, and I Love Them. I really enjoyed staying with them. They both are lovely, and I kind of already miss them. Now I'm headed for Raglan, I guess. I saw some glow-worms today! On the way to Raglan, we made a stop in Waitomo, and I decided to do a cave-tour, because i love rocks for some weird reason. It was a good cave. Saw some rocks. Saw some bones. But also! Glow-worms. They are bio-luminous maggots; the tour included a boat-ride in the complete darkness of the caves ... read more
Getting the raft ready

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo April 15th 2018

Seeing as most people had only recently arrived in New Zealand, we formed a pretty close group very soon after arriving to our first stop: Hahei. Part of the reason for this was also that we had our own little Stray bus village in the holiday park: it was build especially for Stray! A nice game of cards against humanity on the first night added to that as well, revealing everyone's dark humour. After waking up at 6:15, I was told that my trip was cancelled. I was surprisingly okay with this turn of events. Back at home, I would have hated waking up this early for nothing, but now I just appreciated the extra time it gave me. I had a chill morning and booked some things for later until we left for another activity ... read more
Sunrise in Hahei
Cathedral Cove
Cathedral Cove

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo April 11th 2017

Between tours of the Waitomo Caves, we made our way South to just outside Piopio.... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo April 9th 2017

Wie bijna gratis wil vliegen moet een beetje afzien, dus om vier uur gaat de wekker al en om vijf uur zetten we koers naar Schiphol. Na de formaliteiten zitten we al snel aan boord van de A319 van Swiss. De vlucht naar Zurich duurt iets meer dan een uur en we krijgen een broodje en drinken. We hebben een ruime overstap van 4.5 uur. Daar komt nog eens twee uur vertraging bij. Dat is niet heel erg, want met je boardingpass krijg je toegang tot het panoramaterras. Met een lekker zonnetje is het daar goed toeven. De zit naar Shanghai neemt 11.5 uur in beslag. De A340 gaat al even mee en dat zie je goed aan het entertainmentsysteem. Wel is de cabine in prima conditie, we zitten helemaal voorin de economy klasse, waar maar ... read more
002 - A340 van Swiss.
003 - Ons uitzicht over de vleugel
004 - Maglev in Shanghai.

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo March 6th 2017

After three fun days in Auckland we started our journey south to Waitomo to visit the area and the famous caves and we weren't disappointed! The vegetation was beautiful with lush mountains and two lovely sunny days. The high altitude air was a bit cooler than in Auckland but the sun was warm. We stayed at a quaint 100 year old English country inn with great views of the surrounding area. We did a fantastic hike in the area that took three hours as we wound our way through tropical forest, farmland, streams and limestone caves. Very invigorating! Another highlight was our visit to the caves with numerous shafts dropping into under ground cave system and streams. There are 300+ mapped caves in the area with three main ones for tourists..... Ruakuri (which descends 65m), Aranui ... read more
The Northern Explorer
Wellington Cable Car
Little town close to Waitomo

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo February 12th 2016

We'd had an opportunity to see glow-worms in Kaikoura but didn't follow up on it because we'd always intended to go to Waitomo for that very reason. One of the big attractions was that the Waitomo Caves Hotel is located there (really, with a name like that where else would it be?!). It has quite a history to it and is, reputedly, haunted. Best go see, then. Our journey to Waitomo was super. The sun shone and the scenery was just lovely, with many locations being used for the Lord of the Rings films, supposedly evoking Ye Olde England. We stopped at the site of the 'inauguration' of the first Maori king. It was somewhat dilapidated, with just a monumental stone and a plaque, which seemed a shame to me. We travelled through the Cambridge area, ... read more
Grand entrance
Chandeliers and staircase
Hidden gardens

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo November 18th 2015

After a late night check in, Jeff and I attempted to sleep off the gluttony we embraced at The Green Dragon to be ready for a completely different adventure. The day's activity was a complete 180°from the previous. So upon waking we attempted the coffee find...and discoverd there wasn't even a McDonalds to go to! This coffee delinquency is becoming a problem...where's our embassy? Get the Secretary of State on the line! (Although please make it Tea Leone rather than John Kerry, I feel Tea would understand the depths of the needs of these two Pacific Northwest travelers better than John.) These Kiwis need to discover the joys of java stat! being desperate, we came to the conclusion that we'd have to drink the instant that seems to be readily available. Well, the experience is not ... read more
Kristine and Pip
Choose one!
All Dressed Up and Ready To Go!

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo March 28th 2015

Nu bliver det sjovt! I dag kørte bussen videre til Waitomo og det betød endnu en sjov aktivitet! Vi havde lidt travlt fra morgenstunden af, men det var det hele værd. Da vi ankom til Waitomo skulle hele bussen betale for aktiviteten og vi var nogle stykker der skulle afsted med det samme. Jeg skulle på Black Abyss sammen med fire piger fra England, Jessica fra San Francisco, Lis fra Hong Kong og Barph fra England. Det skulle nok blive sjovt. Vi skulle først have alt vores udstyr på og derefter skulle vi rappelle ned i en grotte!! Wuhu jeg glædede mig!! Vi skulle bruge fem timer nede i grotten, hvor vi skulle zipline, hoppe ned i vandet med en badering, gå lidt rundt dernede og kravle op af et par vandfald. Det skulle nok blive ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo February 18th 2015

Short post today - wifi has been scarce. Yesterday was a great day! We drove two hours from Auckkand to Waitomo through lovely farmland. I've never seen so many cows in my life! We checked into our B&B, had lunch at a tiny brew pub down the street, and headed out on our cave trip. Thank you Trip Advisor for recommending Spellbound Tours and the smaller caves. Six of us hopped in a little van with our guide and drove past the main caves where tour buses were stacked on top of each other. We drove 30 minutes into the hills, hiked into a valley, donned our hard hats, and headed into the cave. Our guide has been caving here his whole life. He taught us so much about these caves and the glow worms. He ... read more
Hard Hats on and Ready to Go
Going into the Second Cave

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo December 28th 2013

Another busy day here in New Zealand, full of awesome bushwalks and glowworms! Jackie, Julia, and I left the backpackers around 8:40am for our bushwalk. The bartender that I bought my beer from last night said it would take about 2.5 hours to do the bushwalk, and we first stopped by the i-SITE so Jackie and Julia could buy a glowworm cave expedition. Thus I was a little short on time, since I needed to be back around 11:40am to get to my tour on time. But I figured I would do what I could and see what I could. Let me tell you this: the Ruakuri bushwalk is wonderful! For a lot of it you are actually walking through rolling farmland that is punctuated by these limestone rock pieces with cool layering in them. At ... read more

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