So I have just left New zealand a week ago and i thought i would write alittle to tell you all what i got up to when i was there
So I left Australia onthe 16th of June and flew to Auckland, the capital of New Zealand, on the North island. I met my tour group here and we left the new day. We headed up to Mount Eden for a panoramic view of Auckland, however the weather decided differently and when we got there all we could see was could, literally! So we quickly moved onwards and after a couple of hours we ended up at cathedral cove, alittle beach with lots of caves and rock formations. It ws beautiful though the 1.30hr hike it took to get there and back was alittle unexpected! Next we headed to another beach called Hot Water beach, here there is hot springs under the sand, making it very warm, and if you dig down alittle you can make your own spa pool! so we all got digging, even though it was raining! A few people even ventured into the Sea! not me though, faaaar to cold.
We stayed at Mercury bay that night and the next day we moved down towards Rotorua, stopping along the way to admire the scenery and walk through some disused gold mines. We even stopped in Hobbiton (from lord of the rings) for lunch! When we got to Rotorua we noticed a funny smell and thought that someone on the bus was to blame but we were told that it was caused by Sulphur Dioxide gas and the town has the nickname of rotten-rua. The thermo activity meant that there were plenty of geysers around the town, steam coming up out of grates inthe street and even peoples back gardens!
While we were in Rotten-rua we went to a traditional Mauri village, called Tamaki. Here we were shown the traditional ways of living for the Mauori, including houses, weapons, dress, etc. then we were treated to a haka show and a gorgeous Hangi dinner (the food is cooked under ground).
The next day, before leaving Rotorua we headed to the Luge park were we headed up the hill on the cable cars to have some fun on the little skateboard/go kart/bobsleigh type things. however when we got up there the weather had turned against us, once again! Not wanting to let it defeat us we went for it anyway, got soaking wet racing around the little tracks but had lots of fun.
Unfortunately the weather did have some affect on our trip, the next day we were supposed to be heading to Waitomo to explore some cave systems, do some black water rafting and see some glow worms but due to the heavy rainful this wasnt possible, so we headed straight to Lake Taupo.
Along the way we stopped off at the Tongariro national park where we saw the famous Ngauruhoe (aka Mount Doom from the Lord of the Rings) It is a perfect volcano, completely cone shaped and snow covered, no wonder Peter Jackson used it. We also had a wander to the Huka falls, they run through a rock channel that was formed by an earthquake.
Lake Tuapo is big enough to fit the whole of Singapore in it!! and was the scene of one of the largest voclanic explosions in 186AD, but now a days its known for its trout fishing!! lol. now unfortunately I didnt have time to go fishing (darn it) but we did have lots of fun here, mainly drinking in the hostel bar to be honest!
Oooh now the next night we moved on to one of my favourite places we went to in New zealand. River Valley. It is basically a hostel/hotel in the absolute middle of nowhere. and i mean nowhere, we had no phone reception and you had to walk about 15mins from the bus to the hostel because the road wasnt suitable. This place was just beautiful, the food was amazing, there was no TV which was great! and the next morning we went Horseriding through the beautiful scenery. Loved it!
After our outback experience we headed to more cosmopolitan climes (aka Wellington) this was our last stop in the north island, so it was party time once again! During the day we did take in some culture and headed to the museum, which was massive and actually pretty fun! they had an earthquake room and a huuuge dead giant squid on display.