Greetings to all!
It has been a little while since I last posted an update of my actions and for that I do apologise! The thing is that I have been so busy doing cool things and meeting new people that I haven't had time to get to an internet cafe for a while! So anyway, without further ado I shall get you all up to date...
Well I left Paihia last weekend, Saturday to be exact, and travelled back down to Auckland. On the Kiwi bus I got talking to a load of new people and we got along well, they were:
Dutchy- From 'Dutch' land. Actual name is Abraham. A very cool guy, and has a wicked sense of humour that never makes sense but remains funny anyway!
Welshy- From Wales. His actual name is John but due to conflicts of names all John's have been renamed! Welshy shares my dry and blunt humour.
Patpong- From England. Actual name is Pat. Pat was the first friend I made within out current group and is a good guy!
Chris- From Scotland. He has escaped all the names that we have come up with and remains Chris, lucky w***!
Jenny- From Darlington, England. We call her Astrid or No.2 mostly, this is due to her blonde hair and a particular top she wore when we were thinking of a name! Lovely girl and very funny.
Kate- From England. No nickname has been made for Kate, again a lucky one! Kate is a well organised person who has a keen eye for budgeting!
So the gang and I arrived in Auckland and we stayed at the ACB (Auckland Central Backpackers) hostel. We were in Auckland for a couple of days so we all split to do our own things.
Pat and I spent a day at 'Kelly Tarlton's Underwater World'. We walked there from Auckland city main, and it took about an hour to get there! Anyway we arrived at the place and it looked tiny, we were a little disheartened! Fortunately the complex continued far underground to sea level and was full of cool fish, exhibits, and also a glass tunnel aquarium!
That night we all met up and went to 'The Globe Bar', the main hangout of backpackers in Auckland, and a bit of a meat market!
The next day we finished up in Auckland and we continued on to Mercury Bay. There Pat and I went kayaking, an experience I don't really want to do again to be honest! As we came into the beach at Cathedral Cove we managed to get capsised twice!! Unfortunately my wallet and passport was in the dry bag (which should have been called a Not so dry bag!) and got a bit wet! Anyway, that evening we went to our Kiwi bus drivers (Flea is her name) home for a bbq. Flea's home is the Kiwi Experience's first ever bus, converted into a house! It was very cool and the bbq was a good way to meet everyone on our bus. That night we stayed at a very nice hostel called 'Turtle Cove'.
The next day we were destined for Rotorua. On the way we stopped off at an old gold mining site that is now a nature reserve. The scenery was amazing and I took something like two hundred photos! It is one of the best things I have done in New Zealand to date!
Later when we arrived in Rotorua we were immediately hit by an odd smell of sulphur. Due to its volcanic land, Rotorua permanently smells like a nasty fart :o)
However, we went to a place called Te Puia, another natural reserve, but this time volcanic! There we saw thermal geisers and mud pools that were stunning and again I took too many photos.
After that myself and the gang went luging! For those whom don't know what luging is, its like go carting down a steep hill, without wheels! It was alot of fun. We even had to reach to top of the mountian by cable car before we raced down it!
That evening I met a few girls and went out on the town with them, which was a good laugh.
The next day we journeyed to Waitomo. There I went 'Black Water Rafting'. Now this activity involves putting on a wetsuit, boots, and preparing to get ice cold! Myself and four of the girls form my bus abseiled thirty nine meters into a black abyss, well pitch black shaft anyway. Once inside the caves we then zip-lined another twenty meters down, this time without even our head torches! After this we jumped on heavy duty rubber rings and proceeded to float, climb and trek for four hours in the deep waters of the earth! The highlight of this was the millions of glow worm (or maggots would be more appropriate!) that cling to the walls and ceiling of the caves near the moisture patches! The view was like staring at the night sky on a clear night and seeing millions of stars all around! Breath taking.
That night there was another group bbq and some of the instructors form the black water rafting team came along with their guitars and we all sang songs of all types, it was an awsome night!
Yesterday and today I have been in Taupo. When we arrived in Taupo we visited the 'Haku Falls'. This waterfall is New Zealand's largest waterfall for volume output! Apparently it can fill an olympic swimming pool every second!
After this I went to the 'Taupo Skydive Centre' and partook in a 15,000ft tandem skydive!!! Form 15,000ft you can see both shores of Lake Taupo at the same time, plus all the volcanoes in the region!! The experience was totally shocking! Easily as good as when I solo skydived four years ago! All the others also jumped and in the evening we all went out for pizza.
Today we all took the day off to take a walk to a thermal part of the Waikato river. There we had a picnic and swam in the warm waters that meet the river main. This water was in places hotter than a bath! It has been a nice relaxing day and tonight is Dutchy's last night with us so I think we will all go out for a drink or two or three or.........
Anyway that is everything up to date, so all that is left to say is that I am doing well, and I hope everyone at home is well. I shall try and post again as soon as I can!
Baity aka John for all those whom don't know my nickname :o)