One Pub??? Its all about the surf dude!

Trip Start Nov 14, 2006
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of New Zealand  ,
Tuesday, March 4, 2008

The first thing I noticed about the scenery once on the road, is it is much like parts of the UK. It is the same shade of green and the rolling hills remind me of crossing the Pennines or Pembrokshire. It is beautiful and it is the first time on my whole trip that I have felt home sick. Maybe a little to do with leaving Amy, Ben and the rest behind and being with relative strangers, but all my dreams in New Zealand have been about home. This hadn't happened since India when I used to dream that I had just popped back for a game of footy at the Soccerarena or got a flight back for the Manor Born.

After the short drive we arrived in a tiny one street town called Raglan famous for its excellent beach, waves and surf culture. It is very quiet and most of people here are here to surf, highlighted by the fact it only has one pub. We met a girl from Dundee who worked behind the bar and she loves it in Raglan and has spent most of two years here. We camped in a field under an airstrip where a squadron of old boys with lots of money had just landed their small aircraft, about fifteen of them. They told us where they had been and it was pretty much all of the North Island in two days. What a way to travel.

Keen surfer Andrew, was in his element and he thinks he will come back to live here when he gets a New Zealand visa. The atmosphere is vibrant enough not to be too boring and it really lends itself to the surfing way of life. On the night we hit the bar and met a crazy American woman and her Kiwi husband and by the end of the conversation we were all invited to sleep at their place. A bit strange, we declined and retreated to our tent.

We hit the beach the next day and spent a few hours surfing. The waves were perfect and we managed to catch a few before having a picnic on cliffs with absolutely stunning views.

If anyone travels around the North Island, do not miss Raglan. It is special. A guy told me it is what Byron Bay was like 20 years ago before tourism changed the face of it. Not to be missed.
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