An eggy smell

Trip Start Sep 02, 2007
Trip End Feb 28, 2008

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Friday, February 1, 2008

Arriving in Rotorua we checked in to our hostel for one night (they were full the next night) and we did our usual recce on the town, eventually finding a supermarket.  We cooked our dinner and relaxed for the rest of the evening, hoping not to see a strange frenchman and his psycho girlfriend any more.  Theresa went to shut the window to keep out the sulphur smell and was taken aback when she opened the blind, nearly being killed by the nasty whiff!

In the morning we tried to find somewhere to stay by asking at the local information centre, only to find the whole town was booked out due to the Raggamuffin Festival.  The lady behind the counter said we'd have to sleep in our car!

Accepting defeat we went to Te Puia, a Maori cultural centre.  Here they teach young maoris how to carve wood and weave flax like their ancestors, as well as doing three concerts each day in the traditional building.  There were also a couple of geysers to see here, where boiling water sprays up from the depths, and a boiling mud pool.  It was here we saw our first kiwi and experienced corn on the cob cooked in a bubbling geyser.

In the evening we wnet to a traditional maori hangi, where we saw a very similar concert to the one at Te Puia, followed by a carvery dinner.  Theresa had to go on stage to learn how to mesmerise people with poi balls and a yank on our table went up to learn the haka.  Strangely our table was the only one with westerners as every other one was full of oriental people.  A New Zealander on our table offered us a place to sleep for the night but we were too embarrassed to accept so a night in the car it was after all!  We found a picnic layby to pull up in and it wasn't too bad.

In the morning we drove back into town and went to the Polynesian Spa to have a swim and a soak, but most of all so we could get showered and fresh!  Then we drove out to Agroventures hoping to do some zorbing.  When we arrived the only zorbing we could do meant getting wet as the dry one was a no go due to high wind.  We didn't fancy it so drove up the road to find more adventures.

We decide to do the Swoop, basically a swing that starts from 40m up.  We were attached by a sleeping bag style canvas which hooked together at the back.  Then the crane lifted us up and it was down to Theresa to release the toggle and send us flying through the air.  It felt like a pirate ship ride but way more intense and fun.  It was fitting that Theresa has her Superman T-Shirt on.

After that adrenalin rush we were on the road to the Waitomo Caves.

Love Mark and Theresa xxxx
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