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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Rotorua, New Zealand

Mar 27, 2018 - Rest Day

The day began with some home cooked scrambled eggs, a bit of washing and a lazy start. We decided that today we would work our way around Lake Rotorua with our first stop being Hannah’s Bay for our coffee . Great idea if Hannah’s Bay has a coffee shop . A side track for petrol which was much cheaper ($2.05) than anything we’d seen anywhere else. So we wandered off heading towards Mourea when we saw Hell’s Gate tourist sign so we decided Hell Yes and turned right. Hells Gate was as it turned out was a Geothermal Springs Park where we spent a...

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Mar 26, 2018 - Pakiri to Rotorua

We head off from Pakiri Beach towards Leigh so we could catch the coast line and bit more of not so touristy parts of NZ . Leigh is the closest town to Pakiri Beach and we turned back from bitumen to dirt. True back waters of the country or so we thought. Two kms in we hit the side that said road narrows to single car with passing bays. Photo included in the photos. We were lucky to get through to the bitumen and wide road stretch before meeting two trucks. Leigh was a cute little village which had great coffee and very little else. Lots of...

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Mar 10, 2018 - Wellington to Rotorua

Saturday 10th March 2018: 6 hours of driving from Wellington to Rotorua today. We lefft the sea and harbor behind and headed for volcano country. The two lane roads here are better than the South Island, wider with shoulders, and 2 lane bridges. We had our picnic lunch at Lake Taupo. It is New Zealand's largest lake and was formed in a gigantic volcanic caldera during an irruption. The water was very clear. There was lots of hummus on the shoreline. I threw some in the water and it floated. There is lotd of geothermal activity here. We...

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Feb 18, 2018 - Rotorua, New Zealand – Part 2

We spent the morning of Tour Day 4 exploring Waimangu Volcanic Valley. From their brochure: The Waimangu Geothermal System, created by the eruption of Mt Tarawera on 10 June 1886 is, the youngest geothermal system in the world and the only one wholly created as a direct result of a volcanic eruption Prior to the 1886 eruption of Mt Tarawera, the area had been quiet geologically. The eruption occurred along a newly formed riff, Waimangu Volcanic Riff, and created six distinct craters, three of which are lake-filled. All vegetation in the...

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Feb 17, 2018 - Rotorua, New Zealand – Part 1

Tour Day 3 was a moving day. Immediately after breakfast we boarded a chartered bus for our transfer to Rotorua, a native Maori village 236 km (about 147 mi) south and east of Auckland. Our first rest stop was at River Haven Café in the community of Huntly. It is a café and gift shop featuring clothing made from possum fur and Merino sheep wool. You may think: Who wants clothes made from ‘possum? It isn’t what you think. It is not the rat-like opossum found in the US; this is the common bushtail possum introduced to New Zealand from...

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Jan 24, 2018 - Auckland-Rotorua

Day 17& 18, Jan 24th We said good bye to Australia after 2 full weeks with many new experiences and friends. There are many places that we would have liked to have spent more time at and to delve into the history present and past. We arrived in Auckland after a pleasant 2 hour flight from Sydney. The population of New Zealand is about 5 million and Auckland 1 1/2 million and that of Sydney is just over 5 million. We spent time touring the city which is becoming a big city with underground roads, metro, and large downtown apartments. It is...

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Trip Journal


S&H Australia

Nov 1, 2017 - Adventure, laughter and ceremony

Today was an action packed day of adventure and laughter. We gathered on our bus at 7:45 to head up the mountain on a gondola ride for breakfast with a view. Most of our meals have been served buffet style and that has worked out great, this breakfast was delicious! Directly after breakfast we had the opportunity to go down the mountain luge, which Mom and I did. She did great, not too slow but not too fast! I went twice, first time I hung back a bit to get some shits with Mom, second one I just went, tried to keep up with the tour guide in...

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Sep 14, 2017 - Cultural Immersion

One of the delights of travelling DIY, as opposed to touring in an organised group, is the ability to respond to information gained on the fly. Last night, in Hobbiton, we were talking to a Japanese couple who told us about Te Puia. We had heard about this place, but hadn't found out much about it, but when our Japanese friends told us it was brilliant and not to be missed, we decided to put it on the agenda for today. We arrived at 10, just in time to join a tour conducted by a local Maori lady. She explained that much of Te Puia is run by...

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RandA's Kiwi Kapers

Sep 13, 2017 - Geothermal Day

With fond memories of our previous night's visit to Hobbiton, we returned South for a couple of days in Rotorua. Our first stop was at the Waimangu Volcanic Valley, an area that was dramatically altered by the eruption of Mt Tarawera in 1886. In this area, lakes became enlarged, mud flats turned into lakes and dramatic thermal features, such as the Pink and White Terraces, were lost. The walk along the Waimangu Valley is easy, being mostly downhill, and during the approximate 4.5 kms of its length we were treated to some spectacular lakes,...

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RandA's Kiwi Kapers

Sep 6, 2017 - Tauranga to Rotorua

September 6, 2017 Very short trip to Rotorua today, 59 kms. Pouring rain as we left Count Down after shopping. Sat in the parking lot while it died down a bit. No sooner did we get on SH 36, the main road to Rotorua, but there was an accident that blocked both lanes. Fortunately, we had to sit for only 20 minutes. Although a short distance, it took us nearly 2 hours to drive through mountainous gorges and many hairpin turns. Arrived at Top 10 Holiday Park by 12:30. Camp has more cabins than spots for campers. The place is immaculate,...

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2017 New Zealand

Jul 16, 2017 - The Redwoods

For our final day in Rotorua we decided to visit a local forest known as the Redwoods. These trees are not native to New Zealand (originally from California) but were part of an experiment in the early 1900s to see which trees could be grown in New Zealand given its fertile volcanic soil. It turned out that the redwood trees were a success and as a result there is a large forest with numerous walking and biking trails only a mile or two from the city centre. Lunch packed, we headed for the forest in the morning. The weather was again...

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Jul 15, 2017 - Geothermal Rotorua

Today we decided to take a tour to visit the geothermal areas around Rotorua. Our tour started with a visit to the hot mud pools. This was bizarrely the highlight of the day with pools of steaming mud randomly exploding every couple of minutes. Next up was a visit to the Lady Knox geyser. We had previously visited some amazing geysers in Iceland and had expected large pools of water which randomly explode with ferocious hot water. Instead we had a guy pour some soap powder down what can only be described as a mini volcano and then watch as...

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