We set off from near Kaitaia along state highway 1 and towards Opononi and then to Lake Kai Iwi, near Dargaville. It was quite a bit of a drive and most of the drive was through mountain roads which were very windy! Nath felt sick they were that windy, plus the on and off rain meant I had to drive even slower.
We got back onto the twin coast discovery route in Kohukohu and had to take a car ferry across the water to Rawene. It didn't take long at all and it cost us $22, which probably saved us a lot more driving time than going all the way round the water.
On the other side we stopped in Opononi at Arai-te-uru recreation reserve and had a little picnic lunch overlooking Hokianga harbour and the surrounding sand dunes. This view stood out as a brilliant one amongst the many views we have seen so far. It was beautiful!
We stopped again on the way at Waipoua Forest to see Tane Mahuta, 'the Lord of the Forest', the largest known living kauri tree in New Zealand. It lived up to its name for sure- it was ginormous! The highway through the Waipoua Forest and on to Lake Kai Iwi was pretty breathtaking too, it was never ending!
We stayed overnight at Pine Beach Camping Ground which was on the shore of Lake Kai Iwi, a fresh water dune lake, which is rare. It was beautiful and looked like the sea with a lovely white sandy beach. It was a really nice camp ground and the weather was boiling most of the time we were there too which was a bonus. It cost us $10 each for the night which was the cheapest site around, there were no free campsites around this area, but it was worth the money anyway and we got to have a warm shower!