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NZ - coming to an end

NEW ZEALAND | Friday, 25 April 2008 | Views [686] | Comments [3]

It has been ages since we updated our blog.......ahhhhhh where to start.  Well from Dunedin (another nice city but nothing amazing to write home about....oh except we saw penguins!!) we traveled up the East coast, stopped in Christchurch again for the night and the caught a flight to Auckland.  This is cheaper than driving up to Auckland especially as the ferry is Expensive!

From Auckland we hired our third campavan, 'Bernard' and having spent a night North of Auckland by mistake we then headed South to the Bay of Plenty area to stay with Julian Fitter (from the OLCC) and his very nice partner Jayne.  For those of you who don't know the OLCC is my Dad's old school cricket club.  Julian was in the year above Dad at school and has lived in the Galapagos Islands for 15 yrs so helped us out when organising that part of our trip.

Anyway, we had the most lovely 4 days staying with them, living in a house and enjoying being in, what felt like, a family for a while.  It was so relaxing and both Julian and Jayne can talk and laugh all day long.  They are lovely.  Julian is currently writing a book on the plants and birds of New Zealand and Jayne is and artist.  Her current project is on the plants of New Zealand.  As you can imagine we spent a lot of time learning about the various botanical friends we were sharing the forest with when we went for a walk and as we sat in the hot pools at a remote little natural hot spring!!  One day we went out on Julian's new little motorboat which was awesome.  He loved whizzing us all off around the lake, well until I tool the helm.  Then he looked a little worried.

From their home we took a day trip ourselves to White Island, a few Km off the coast and a day trip this is a live volcano, the most active in NZ.  It was incredible.  There was really pungent gases exploding out of bright yellow vents, coloured by sulphur crystals developed as the surface of the earth.  The enormous acid lake was pretty intimidating and reminded me of Dr Evils and some terrible torture movie!!  You really felt that you were close to the earths center, where land is both created and destroyed.  It was awesome.  The only down points were the terrible sea crossing that for the first time made me sick and the terribly toxic gases that even through our gas masks choked us something chronic!!!!

Having left Julian and Jayne we headed North past Auckland again to the Kauri Forests where we visited several absolutely enormous Kauri Trees.  The largest standing with a girth of 13.8 meters.  The pictures show it better but these trees just grow so huge and are estimated to be about 2000 years old.

So now we are back in Auckland and catching up on everything from washing to emails to job applications before our next adventure on Monday when we fly to Tonga in the South Pacific.  A little last minute decision but we need some sun, relaxation and adventure before coming home and Tonga is beautiful, cheap to get to and rumour has it we are well connected out there....................



what is the food like out there?

is there good local brew?


  sam Apr 28, 2008 12:48 AM


After this big adventure the idea of applying for a JOB sounds ghastly!! As Lizzie is the Tonga expert, bet you've been well briefed as to what to do there and what to avoid!

  Anna Noble Apr 29, 2008 9:30 PM


You sound as if you are having the most fantastic trip.
NZ reminds me so much of my trip 20yrs ago now ughhh!

  Flick May 5, 2008 10:08 PM

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