Kia ora everybody! I'm here with Stephanie in Paihia in beautiful New Zealand. We've been in New Zealand since wednesday and Stephanie has been travelling with me since the 11th. I'll have the last week or so of my Australian adventure up soon, but first let me tell you what we've been up to since arriving in NZ.
We flew over from Sydney on the 15th on the best kind of flight (that is to say a boring uneventful flight), landing in Auckland at about 18:00 local time. Auckland seems prettu cool so far, although we haven't actually seen that much of it as we've only had one full day there and most of that day was spent sorting out admin type stuff like bus passes. We've strolled up and down Queen Street though and checked out the harbour.
On Friday we boarded our first of many Stray buses, heading for Paihia and the Bay of Islands. As soon as you leave Auckland the countryside is stunning; all green rolling hills and rocky outcrops. It's really rather like being in Lord of the Rings, and I love it. Stray, our backpacker bus company for those of you who don't know, are our chosen company to travel with, and so far we love them very much. The guide we had (Lucky), was really funny and informative, imparting all manner of random facts and things about the areas we were passing through. Hopefully at some point we'll end up on another one of her buses!
Although our journey was to Paihia, we stopped off at loads of interesting places along the way. One of these places was Goat Island, which is a marine reserve and really very pretty. I took a ton of photos (some of which I'm very proud of) and will post some soon, I promise. We also stopped at a beach for some photos, kite flying and dipping our toes in the sea, a giant kauri tree, and some public toilets for some sightseeing (no joke, and I will tell you the story behind them when I have the leaflet in front of me).
We arrived in Paihia in the evening in time for a barbeque at the hostel, and all made plans for the necxt couple of days. Stephanie and I were to be going to Cape Reinga the next day, and then the day after (today) I made plans for parasailing. But more about that later.
For now I think that is enough to tide you over as Stephanie has returned from her crusade to Woolworths and we are going to go and get ice cream. More soon.