New Zealand

Trip Start Oct 04, 2005
Trip End Apr 19, 2006

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Where I stayed
xbase hostel

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Saturday, January 14, 2006

4th & 5th January
We got to Auckland and instantly felt like we were at the back of Watford highstreet it was crap nd we won't be going back if ican help it.
We booked on the Kiwi experience bus whcih is a group of buses that go all around the country which give you tours and free stuff but also let you hop on and off and stay places as long as you like.
We have met loads of cool people on this bus, all young and alot of them are British so easy to talk to.

Friday 6th January
We got on the bus and met Rhiannon who we had spent time with in Australia. We drove up North to Paihia in the bay of Islands which was a cute little villagewith a great view fo the islands. When we got there we went obn a free trip to the mud pools which stunk of Suplhur and made all our clothes stink. It's kind of an eggy smell so i am used to it travelling with Jodie and Chris for 3 months i can tell you. They were all different temperatures and we all smothered ourselves in the black sand at the bottom. Then the 50 year old bald fat dutch man that was with us decided to get naked and bend over so most of us girls are still shaking with fear. We just had a walk around the town and went for a few drinks that night which was nice.

Sat 7th January
We got up early and headed to CapeReinga which is the most northern part of New Zealand. The driver was a mental Kiwi called Craig who told stories with stupid sound affects the whole way there. We stopped at Puketi rain forest which wasn;t that interesting really andf then we headed to ninety mile beach which was awsome. It is a stretch of beach that isn't actually ninety miles but 64 miles and is the only way to get up the west coast so people use it as a road. It was quality driving really fast against the shore. We stopped a few times to dig for shell fish for dinner and also to see a mercedes that had been caught in a storm and swallowed by the sand. Apparently it was a couple of kids that had nicked their dads car a fortnight ago! Gutted! You come off the beach through a shallow stream which is actually quick sand at the bottom and in known for swallowing buses and ended up at some sand dunes.
We had a talk on how to sand board down these 100mtr dunes and how not to die. It took about 15 mins to get to the top and then you go down which is soooooooo much fun. YOu have to use your toes as brakes so you don't go off the dune at the end and onto the road which most people couldn't do. Next we got to Cape Reinga where you can see the Tasman sea and the Pacific Ocean meet which was quite cool and the views were pretty amazing.
That night we went to the bar down the road and ended up playing musical chairs for a 100 dollar bar tab. We ahd a stratagy which cionsisted of Chris barging smaller people off the chairs but we still lost.

Sunday 8th January
We just chilled on the beach today, taking in the views before unfortunately heading back to Aukland to speand a night in Xbase hostel to continuse down to the south the nesxt day.

Monday 9th January
We drove to Mercury bay which was a lovely, really pretty village with fantastic views. We got there quite late though so checked into the hot rocks hostel - our room we were sharing with the ducth who we had already found out like to get naked a lot, and now decided to tell us that they had a selection of knives in their bags so if we went anywhere near there bags we would be in trouble!
We speant the night at anotehr hostel where we first properly met the welsh lads - Owain, or Dwain to me and Chris, Yestin, and Amy, lisa, Roseanna, Jill, Andrew , Rachel and Rob. A really nice croud and all up for a laugh.

Tuesday 10th January
Headed to Rotorua which is the geothermal and cultural centre of New zealand apparanlty. When you get there all you can see from the park ahed is steam rising from different hot pools and mud pools. It also stunk.
On the way we stopped at Karanghake Scenic reserve for a bush walk which was really pretty and walked 1k through a pitch black tunnel which was really scary.
The night was a real highlight as we went to a traditional Maori Hangi and concert where we got to see the Maori warriors do a traditional welcome and put on a show for us, and then eat a huge feast that they cooked. It was basically a roast dinner with Pavolova for dessert !! Yum. After - night at the bar - the usual stuff.

Wednesday 11th January
After planning to go Zorbing and to the thermal spas we woke up at 12 ish and the weather wasn't great and decided to be very lazy and sit in the park doing sod all. Well not sod all we did play leap fog and have teddy bear roll competitions if that counts.
After going down to the bar for a few drinks and an early night i ended up volunteering our group into a competition to win a bar tab and some other bits. The game consisted of us changing all clothes inculding underwear with the opposite sex team members infornt of the audience, getting in a wheely bin and being wheeled around the bar by chris whilst people chuck drinks at me (at which point Chris was getting really wound up by some americans in the audience so decided to wheel me into them and run them over ), blow up baloons as quick as you can only to use them suggestively whilst crouched behind my 25 stone french friend until it popped and ride around the bar on a barbie bike. We still lost - but got a small prize for coming third place. It was worth it just to take some of the photos that we got - have a look!

Thursday 12th January
We left Rotorua and drove through to Waitomo and went for a long walka round the caves as we couldn't afford the tours which looked awsome insode the caves where people absailed into them etc.

Friday 13th January
We got to Taupo and met up woth the friends we had made in Mercury bay. We had a very messy and funny night out which resulted in a lot of people waking up in the morning in shame. Rhiannon decided to wake us up at half 6 to recall her shame. I can't repeat anything that happened that night .

Saturday 14th January
I had a sky dive booked and really didn't want to do it when i woke up as Rhiannon pulled out and chris was just a liiiiiiiitle bit too heavy. Sooooooooo glad i did it was such a cool day. Me and Chris got picked up in a LImo and taken to the ground wear all the dives take place. I got briefed etc and met my instructer who thought it was very funny to wind me up when i was scared - tellign me on the plane up that he hadn't seen anyone check the parachute so he hoped it was ok etc etc. Was so nervous because i was first out which meant you have to sit right next to the door which is more like a hatch that is very easily opened. It was a beautiful clear day and the scenery over Lake Taupo was just amazing even if you are seeing it upside down whilst some crazy kiwi shouts and you 'welcome to New Zealand Vianna' which he seemd to think my name was.
Was so glad when the parachut went up succesfully and then i just floated and relaxed. Was awsome. I got a dvd of the whole thing, pictures from the ground, a t shirt and the dive and it worked out at about 115 pounds all in all so it was such good value for money.
After a group of us went for a walk up to the hot springs and just chilled out all afternoon in the sun celebrating that we were alive still. We also walked up to Huka falls which were pretty beautiful.

Sunday 15th January
We left Taupo after having a really good time there for River valley. On the way we stopped at the Tongariro National park for a 2 hour tek throught he bush to the falls and had lunch. We stopped also so all teh Lord of the rings buffs could take pictures of the mountain used as 'Mount Doom' in the film. Every where you go in New Zealand you have Lord of the Rings shuved doen your throat.
We got to River valley loadge which was spectacular everyobe jst love it . Itw as completely alone in the miiddle of the hills and on the edge of the river. Inside the dorms where like chalets and there was a huge fireplace att he bar. AND we had a HUGE roast dinner which was loveley. We spent the night playing ring of fire which has become a bit of a ritual at night times now.

Monday 16th January
We got up early to go white wafter rafting. It was worth it to see Frenchy and CChris in wetsuits which was hilarius. Frenchy kepy running around asying ehlp help i am suffercating in this thing with his big belly poking out. The guide said we had to get into groups of 5 and evenly spread out weight loads so all the hevy people weren't together. He looked at our group with fear and said it was going to me difficutl - but would make it more fun, frenchy is - well look at the photos - 25 stone, chris is big, we had a big Ozzy guy and then me and the otehr girl who aren't small.
It was a wicked experience, made even better by the fact we were so heavy because it meant we went a lot faster and a lot more water came into the boat in tight spots . Chris and Frenchy did get told to get out at one point though and walk for a bit around the river as our boat owuldn't make it!1 Funny!.
Afetrwards we spent a long time in the bus and arrived at Wellingotn really late. We didn't even get to see the city as speant it in the hostel - and had another awsome night there in the bar mainly thanks to our bus driver who got us free shot after free shot.

Tuesday 17th January
We spent most of the morning on the ferry going from the North to the South Island and travlled a few hours on the bus to Nelso, which is actuallymore North than Wellington on the North island where we had just come from - i thought that was pretty cool. We stopped at Pelouros for a dip in a great waterhole before getting to Nelson. Nelson was beautiful, really sunny, and our hostel was great with a pool, see - saw and great views of the city. Me and Chris decided we need a night on our own and not in a dorm so we got given the double delux room - which was also called the pink room. Chris said it was the best room we had stayed in which was a buit worrying as it was all pink and flowery... Lisa wrote a little story about everyone that day which the welsh boys acted out that night which was extremely funny after lots of alcohol. We went out to explore the town but it was pretty dead.

Wednesday 18th January
Today it is raining but me and Chris still managed to walk up yet anothe bloody hill to getto the centre point of New Zealand!! We got great views of the town. We also saw the ground where ther first ever rugby match in New zealand was played . Now he is looking at me very bored, better go!
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