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Mark's World Tour 2007-08

Day 236: Rotorua to Taupo

NEW ZEALAND | Saturday, 28 June 2008 | Views [528]

The Lady Knox Geyser erupts

The Lady Knox Geyser erupts

Saturday 28th June

I got up, gathered the last of my stuff together and had breakfast before the Magic Bus picked me and few others up from the hostel at 09.30 (slightly on the late side). We did a whistlestop tour of Rotorua including an old church and the government buildings, but it was purely a time filler before we got on the road towards Lake Taupo.

On the way, we stopped off at Lady Knox Geyser, one of many geysers in the area that erupt several times a day, with some of the water shooting into the air up to about thirty metres at some of the most powerful spots. The guide at this geyser – where the entry was free for everyone – was able to use ordinary liquid soap as a catalyst to artificially provoke an eruption (something that was discovered years ago by a group of inmates at a local open prison, who used to wash their clothes in the area and stumbled upon this exploding crater by accident). We also got the chance to stop at some bubbling mud pools which looked pretty cool in the cold of the day, the steam rising up and creating a rather atmospheric sight for the busloads of people that come here everyday.

From here, we continued on to another geothermal area, this time to the Waiotapu Thermal Park. An entry fee of about ten dollars allowed visitors to see various pools and craters of this geothermal area. It was quite interesting, not to mention smelly, and those of us who were interested in this kind of sight spent about an hour walking around the park before getting back on the bus.

We made our way towards the Huka Falls, which is a river that flows powerfully downstream, before we arrived into Taupo itself. We stopped off at 'Taupo Bungy' to watch some of the guys on the bus fling themselves forty feet above a river. It looked like good fun but I was still unsure as to whether I really wanted to do one. I had my name down to do a skydive later in the day, but the conditions weren't too good and we were waiting on word from the skydive company in Taupo throughout the day as to whether we were going to be able to get up in the air that afternoon.

After the guys were finished bungy-jumping, we were dropped off at the YHA where most people on the bus were staying. It was a reasonably good place to stay if a bit cramped. However, it was nice and warm and provided a good place to get away from the worsening weather that had definitey put paid to our skydive.

After making some food, I headed off to do some emailing for a few hours, before meeting up with a bunch of the guys from the bus in Mulliagns Bar. We spent a few hours there before heading back to the hostel for some rest.


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