Tags New Zealand
Tag: New Zealand
We woke up on Friday morning in no hurry to get out of Waitomo. The only thing on the agenda for the day was a three hour drive east to Rotorua. After checking out of our cabin we spent about twenty minutes in a small coffee shop next door. Our tour from the previous day provided us each with a free drink coupon so we cashed in and relaxed for a few minutes.
Wednesday morning we set out early on the road towards Waitomo via a 100km detour along the North Island’s west coast. About an hour south of Hamilton, we stopped first at Bridal Veil Falls. The falls lie among the bush about ten minutes from the carpark. Upon arriving, we agreed that Breidal Veil Falls are among the most impressive we have seen thus far in New Zealand. After a quick hike to the bottom to get a different vantage point, we headed back to the car to continue our journey.
After our long but mostly uneventful day on Sunday, we were anxious to get out of Northland on Monday morning. Before heading out of town, we took a quick stroll along Dargaville’s waterfront and main drag. Dargaville is a neat little town with a couple of interesting buildings, but didn’t hold our interest for long.
Upon returning to the campground on Saturday night we saw a sign posted regarding a planned power outage for the whole area on Sunday from 8am until 5pm. Since we were leaving bright and early in the morning, this didn’t seem to be very important, but it turned out to be. On Sunday morning, we headed over to the gas station to find it shut down due to the power outage. After going to several more with the same result, we began to prepare for a long day, given that we didn’t have enough gas to go anywhere else. There were seven long hours to kill before we could fuel up and hit the road.
Sometime in the middle of the night on Friday the weather took a turn for the worse. With our tour already booked, all we could do was hope that things would improve. After breakfast we drove to the I-site where the tour bus was scheduled to pick us up. The bus arrived just on time and before long we were on our way.The first thirty minutes of the drive took us through pine tree forests and sparkling meadows before we emerged at plain looking bay on the east coast of the peninsula.
I awoke on Thursday morning with a bit of nervousness about driving on the left side of the road. We had scheduled the rental car shuttle to pick us up at the hostel at 10am, but it never showed up. Finally at 10:30, we headed back inside to call and they informed us that the shuttle was delayed until 11. Needless to say we weren’t happy. but there wasn’t much we could do but wait. Eventually the shuttle did come and by 11:30 I had signed all of the paperwork and we had a car locked up for the next thirty two days.
Because of our flight cancellation in Fiji, we arrived in Auckland much later than originally planned. While this wasn't really a problem for us, the one issue we faced was not having any accommodation booked for the night. We had felt that booking a room ahead of time wasn't important given that we were going to arrive in the early afternoon. Luckily, when we finally cleared immigration at around 10pm, the visitor's information desk was still open and they were able to call around for us.