Through Hobbiton to Rotorua

Trip Start Aug 08, 2005
Trip End Feb 22, 2006

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Flag of New Zealand  ,
Monday, August 29, 2005

The late French woman was left standing whilst we pretended to drive off. the look of anger in her eyes.....oooohhh! We then headed to hot water beach. (still awaiting pictures from Laura). At this place due to the geothermal activity, hot water bubbles up through the sand. We dug frantically, but the tide was in too much, our attempts to build spa pools got washed away with each wave. Still was amazing to stand in warm water with the cold sea keeping the temperature nice. The driver imparted his knowledge on birds - takahe a bird thought to be extinct, that was found by chance in 1948, and now there are many of them. also about a species for which there was only 1 female and 6 males, and now through breeding programmes there are more than 200. When the maoris came, dogs came. then when the europeans came, they brought ferrets, weasels, cats. An aussie brought the cuddly Possum - which eats everything. As a result the island's birds suffered, and now are all nearly extinct. Later we passed through matamata - hobbiton, though there is not much of the shire left to see. Also passed through Paeroa - known as 'world famous in new zealand' unique lemon and paeroa spring water soft drink - good for hangovers. there is a large bottle in the town. we passed the hauraki plains, Mt. Tearoha, and then stopped just outside Rotorua to Zorb. the wet variety. 3 of us got in this rubber ball with some water, then got pushed down the hill. Was great, but too short lived. ended up sliding everywhere and bumping into each other, and laughing all the way down.
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