A FULL day of hiking
Trip Start Apr 19, 2010
131Trip End Apr 18, 2011
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
For our last day in New Zealand, we once again esacaped the city. We took a 30 minute ferry ride to the youngest volcano in the Hauraki Gulf, called Rangitoto Island. This island is the last and largest volcano to be formed in the Auckland volcanic field. We took the 7:30am ferry over, as it was the cheapest ferry ride by $10 compared to all the other travel times. Arriving at 8am, we began our day of hiking.
Standing 5.5km wide, we started our day by hiking a full quarter of its perimeter, taking us about 2 and a half hours. We walked the coastline for the most part of it, admiring the beautiful scenery and the gorgeous sailboats perched in the waters beyond. Rangitoto holds about 2,300 million cubic meters of lava, which is equivalent to about 468,000 Olympic swimming pools full
Next we began our hike inward to the summit. This trek took us about an hour and a half to complete and it was all uphill (obviously). By the time we got to the top, we were exhausted and hungry, but the effort was well worth it. At the summit, you could clearly see the 360 degree panoramic view, stretching out toward Auckland and the other islands around it. The summit used to house a lookout during World Wars I and II to fend off any attacks from outsiders. We enjoyed the view and the cool breeze before heading back down.
On our way back toward the harbor, we discovered some lava caves. Paul explored the openings and insides, while Lindsey hung back holding the gear since her knee was more than sore from the hiking already. We found a cave with others standing around it. When no one entered, Paul jumped at the chance to see what was inside
With tired legs and bodies after our total 7 hours of hiking, we headed back down toward the harbor to catch the next ferry back to Auckland. It was an amazing way to spend our last day in New Zealand. Something tells me we're going to be a little sore tomorrow and will sleep sound tonight before embarking on our next stop: Australia. If anyone has any recommendations for us, please feel free to leave them. We're making our way up the coast from Melbourne to Cairns, with hopeful stops in Sydney, Byron Bay, and Brisbane on the way.
Things were learned from Rangitoto: Everything is incredibly clean. Anything you take on to the island must be packed out, as there aren't even any garbages cans to dispose of your trash. But the place is immaculately clean and litter-free. This seems to be a mentality of much of New Zealand, as the standard of cleanliness was visible in Rotorua as well as the bustling city of Auckland.
**Pictures will be up soon, hopefully. The internet is sooooo slow here!