Weekend in Tauranga

Trip Start Feb 20, 2013
Trip End Jul 05, 2013

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What I did
Mount Maunganui

Flag of New Zealand  , North Island,
Sunday, June 9, 2013

As I near the end of my trip, it seems my motivation to blog has decreased significantly. I think it's a combination of exams coming up and my excitement to be home. Just 26 days until I leave. I am both happy and sad about my days in New Zealand coming to an end. But more on that when I get closer to leaving.
Last weekend, Sean, Nicole, and I went down to Tauranga to visit Sean's mom, Annika. They live on lovely farm where I got to see chickens, a pig (their neighbors'), and their two beautiful horses that I was brave enough to pet (but not ride). Apart from the allergic reaction I had from their cats, it was a nice weekend away.
On the way down, we stopped in Paeroa and saw the giant Lemon & Paeroa bottle. It is a soda that's manufactured in New Zealand and can only be found here (and specialty shops). They have this giant bottle in their town that many tourists stop to take pictures. After that stop, we arrived in Tauranga and climbed Mount Maunganui. It is an extinct volcanic cone with a peak of 761 feet - and I climbed every foot of it! After stopping a few times to "take pictures"/catch my breath, I made it to the peak and got to enjoy the beautiful view. It looks out on the ocean and the town, and we got there just before sunset so it was a stunning sight. I can finally say that I've climbed a volcano now!
The next day, we went to the hot pools during the afternoon. It was quite a chilly day, so it was nice to warm up in the pools. We also got ice cream at a local favorite, Copenhagen, which was pretty good. The rest of my time in Tauranga was spent visiting the animals, playing cards, and hanging out with the family.
We left early Tuesday morning to get me back for one of my final lectures. I am now done with all my lectures and only have three exams to take at the end of the month. It will give me a lot of prep time and hopefully some time to do a few last touristy things while I'm here.
One last thing. Yesterday, Gloria, Tim, Finn, and I took the two dogs to Piha Beach. It was neat because it was one of the first places I went when I got here and made my whole trip feel full-circle.

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Nichole on

Wow! Great timing on the pictures! You couldn't ask for better color in the scenery :)

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