From Raglan to Rotorua

Trip Start Sep 06, 2004
Trip End May 22, 2005

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Friday, October 29, 2004

After my stay at raglan, I got back on the Stray bus and headed off to Hahei, which is in The Coromandel peninsula on the East coast of the North Island. We stopped at Waitomo along the way, this place is famous for its glow worm caves, I opted out of this activity, because going down into dark dank caves holds no appeal for me, plus I had see the glow worms at Raglan and as stunning as they are I preferred to see them above ground.
Unfortunately we had missed the tides at hot water beach. At this beach two hours either side of high tide you can dig a hole in the sand and it fills up with hot water and you can take a bath! I will try and get back to this spot and try it.
We stayed at a hostel in Hahei that night and the following morning I was hoping to go kayaking around Cathedral Cove, but the weather was against us and it was cancelled, which was a shame because it was a beautiful place, instead I spent the morning doing my washing, as my clothes had developed legs and were walking towards the machines themselves! It's amazing how you tend to loss your scene of smell when you are a backpacker! Everyone's the same, so it makes me feel better.
We left Cathedral cove at about 12pm and headed towards Rotorua-the smelly town!
Stray offers a cultural stop along the way where you spend an evening with a local Maori family, who prepare a traditional 'hangi' meal and teach you about Maori traditions and the local children put on a concert for you including the haka. Due to the local fire department, the normal stop was cancelled, so we ended up at Rotorua with another family who did us proud, even though they only had a few hours notice. We didn't get the entertainment, which was a shame, but the meal they prepared for us was a brilliant and very tasty. I would have liked to have seen the children but there you go. It was a great evening and we spent the night in a local hostel called Hot rocks.
I have to say that I wasn't really taken by Rotorua, the rotten egg smell wasn't as bad as I thought it would be, but there was something about the town I just didn't like.
I had a walk over to the park, which was an experience there were loads of little places just sealed off with fences, these were hot pools.
You could see the mud bubbling up at the steam from a long way away.
I had a swim in the swimming pool at the hostel, which is heated by the geothermal waters; it was like getting into a bath, really wired.
We left Rotorua at about midday, next stop taupo.
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