Tuesday, December 20, 2005

the littlest hobo


Like the littlest hobo, we just keep on moving. today its the turn of hamilton. some pretty rough rain on the way here almost certainly ruled out a skydive today. instead, we had a look round the shops and picked up a couple of bargains.

didnt do much in the evening. just watched another film. the hostel is very quiet with only 6 people booked in - so much for booking ahead.

Monday, December 19, 2005

more thermal activity


moving into Turanga today for some nice coastal weather. the day started great. almost clear blue skies and it was pretty hot. after lunch we checked out the town and by the time we walked round and checked our email, it clouded over and started to rain. not looking forward to xmas!

Whats the one thing you can do in the rain? you guessed it, salt water themal pools - outdoors of course. spent around 1.5 hours relaxing in the pools - getting hot and bothered relaxing in the spa. if it wasnt for the wet weather, this outdoor thermal experience just wouldnt be the same!

for dinner, we had one of tans faves - fish fingers, chips and beans. went down a treat. also attempted to book another sky dive tomorrow but it doesnt look promising.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

white water rafting


one thing the weather couldnt prevent us doing and thats white water rafting! we were picked up just before it began to pour again. about an hour later, we were all kitted up and learning the moves that would save our lives.

there were 4 in our raft plus the guide. we hit some pretty rough rocks and it was very tiring rowing constantly - and getting the timing right.

there were a couple of calm parts to it but most of the river was rock infested, and overflowing due to all the rain. It was more of a fun experience than anything. woul dhave preferred to do the river with the 7ft drop but it was closed off, due to the stupid weather.

it was a really exhausting day but we decided to go for a walk round in the evening to ease down the dinner. all the streets have drains with steam coming out of them or small puddles of boiling water. its so strange - its almost like the whole place is ready to explode!

Saturday, December 17, 2005

rotten eggs


we were leaving taupo today but hoped to get in a sky dive on the way out. Nope. torrential rain put pay to that. maybe more luck in roturua.

this place really does smell of rotten eggs, as soon as you enter. this iois due to all the thermal lakes they have.

well, couldnt really get up to much due to the weather. the hostel had its own thermal pool, so in the pouring rain, i decided to spend an hour or so relaxing in the hot tub. weird feeling with the rain coming down on you.

more movies in the eve, which included gremlins, half of american pie and half of castaway.

Friday, December 16, 2005

bl00dy weather


the plan was to do our sky dive at 8.10am and then leave the rest of the day to do as we please....... but it wasnt to be that way. we tried 3 times to book it but the weather beat us each time. so instead, we hit the thermal pools in the morning.

we went into the private pools 1st, which consisted of warm, hot and hottest water. and they were steaming as well. after trying those out, we went to the main pools which were still pretty warm - around 35 degrees. they had 2 spas as well, but they were a freezing 20 degrees.

after lunch, I beat tanya at scrabble, which meant we got to play mini golf instead of going for coffee. it ended up absolutely pouring it down half way through and we got drenched. we ended up drawing the golf - again/

in the evening, we watched a couple of movies including vanilla sky and joe dirt.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Lake Taupo


we leave our cozy little nest and free internet and head for Taupo. we planned to do a sky dive in the afternoon but it was to be determined by the weather.

we turned up and decided which jumps we wanted to partake in. Tanya went for the 12k with DVD and photo's, where as I opted for the 15k jump, which requires oxygen!

we waited for about an hour before it was called off due to cloudy weather. booked in for 8:10am tomorrow.

so that the day wasnt totally wasted, we went to see the Huka falls - which wasnt really that spectacular. also went to craters on the moon nature park. this was more impressive. an area filled with loads of craters with hot steam coming out of them. looked like an alien world.there were a few mud ones as well.

decided on a quiet one this evening, ready for tomorrow. so we played scrabble and then hit the hay!

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

rainey days


the weather hot us pretty bad today. wanted to go to ocean beach and get a little sun but the rain came and fell once more.

so we drove towards cape kidnappers and stopped for lunch. after that we headed back up to Napier and went up to bluff lookout. not too bad but doesnt compare to some of the views in the south island.

watch a little TV, a few classics like roseanne and old home and away + fresh prince of bel air. in the evening we just chilled out and watched a film

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

chopped afro


after a late brekkie, I headed into town to prune the afro. getting annoyed with it now and i've proved my point. 15 mins later and i'm half a stone lighter.

we hot the beach area. shame it wasnt golden sands as it would have been a great beach. in the afternoon, it was clear blue skies (thunderstoms were predicted), so we had a game of mini golf. i think i was still adjusting my balance from losing so much hair coz tanya beat me by 1 stroke!

we then took some pics of the funky art deco buildings to add to our collection. The evening consisted of more internet and tv watching. hostels need more free internet!

Monday, December 12, 2005

blast from the art deco past


well, we arrived in Napier today, and oh boy does it feel like we've gone back in time. Its quite a large town - or city (catherdral status), but it was flattened in the 1930's by an earthquake and was rebuilt.

the hostel is really nice. we opted for an ensuite, to boost morale!

after getting the food in and having lunch, we walked round and checked out the shopping, which was ok. went to get a haircut too but couldnt find any barbers open in the afternoon.

there is free internet at the hostel, so most of the day was spent catching up and sharing pics etc...

Sunday, December 11, 2005

a bit like rockhampton


we stopped at Palmerston north, which reminded us a lot like rockhampton in OZ. There isnt a lot to do here, but apparently there are a lot of students that live here.

we ended up spending some time in the library researching our next destinations - fiji and the cook islands.

not much more to say about this place! except give it a wide berth!

Saturday, December 10, 2005

te papa


1st we hit the Te Papa museam - which is dedicated to the country of NZ and its people. A few cool interactive exhibitions and a lot of floors to get through. I believe something like $130 million was spent on this place.

In the afternoon, we hot the shops and bought each others xmas pressie. Gonna be difficult hiding them from Tanya this year. Also got a bottle of champange to have at xmas whilst on the beach!

for dinner, we went to another foodcourt and had a curry this time. twas very nice too. could get used to this not cooking malarky!

Friday, December 09, 2005

off to wellington


we boarded the ferry to wellington today. mush like a day trip to france actually. went down the same stretch of water from the day before and even saw the dolphins again.

i couldnt believe how busy it was when we got to wellington. Tall buildings, traffic, organised chaos - I just wanted to turn back! I was getting used to all these rural villages.

Had a look round after checking into the hostel. just seems to be so busy and hectic.

As hostel was a little skanky, we decided to eat out. went to an asian foodcourt and had 2 meals plus drinks for $20. we then went to a licensed coffee shoo and I had a couple of henikein and tanya had her mocha fix. also had our charactuers drawn as well!

we then went to the cinema and saw lion, witch and the wardrobe which was pretty good.

Thursday, December 08, 2005



drove to picton today. another tiny town, which is quite surprising considering its the gateway to wellington. had a nice coffee before checking into hostel.

after lunch, we went on the cruise down the Queen Charlotte sound. Not as good or scenic as Milford sound but there was the added bonus of the dolphins, known as dusky dolphins. We followed a pod of about 6-8 as they kept sufacing to the top for air. a couple even did a bit of show jumping for us! I think Tanya really loved it as it been one of the major things she wanted to do whilst travelling (as well as cuddling a koala).

we also did a bush walk and learnt a bit about the area and environment. in total, it was about 4 hours which was very pleasant.

in the eve, we watched a doco on an english women who was a body builder - YUK! Then we watched when harry met sally.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

bite the bullet


decided to bite the bullet and do a little drive through the queen charlotte track. stopped at a lookout 1st. then went to a place called mistletoe bay and had a nice lunch. also recorded our xmas message to send on email.

we walked to the peninsula and sat and admired the view. then drove to Portage and had an ice lolly by the lake.

another quiet eve, as there isnt much to do here - Not even a TV!

Tuesday, December 06, 2005



went to havelock, which is a tiny village between nelson and picton. took all of 5 mins to walk through the town. as we have been driving so much, we just did nothing and played chess in the garden!

Monday, December 05, 2005

are we Abel


we headed to the Abel Tasman N.P. today. a bit of a long drive from nelson but we headed to golden bay 1st. after a couple of hours, we went on one of the walks to a place called lookout rock. 4 on the scenery rating!

then we headed to the other end of the N.P. and walked along one of the nie beaches for a while. we then stopped for a pint before heading back.

felt like a bit of a wasted day because of all the driving - its worth staying up there if you're gonna visit!

Sunday, December 04, 2005

time for pancakes


the weather cleared up a bit this morning so we went and had a look at the pancake rocks and blow holes. pretty weird rock formations which took millions of years to make.

we took one of the girls from the hostel with us to nelson - daniella - a german girl. it was another long drive, but as always, the scenery made it worth while.

stopped off on the way to clib across a swingbridge, which was quite thrilling. we arrived at our mansion in nelson and was invited out to dinner - roast, all you can eat for $12.95. 3 courses, you couldnt turn that down! we fed ourselves stupid.

watched a couple of movies on the massive screen and then hit the sack.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

rained solid


a bit of a long drive today. stayed in an out of the way place called Punakaiki. the hostel was cozy and we shared a cottage with a few other people.

it rained and rained and rained so we didnt venture out. played scrabble and some card games instead. I suppose these are what saturday nights are all about now a days!

Friday, December 02, 2005

walking on ice


a great chance for a lie in today as our walk wasnt til 12.30pm. when the time came, we got kitted up and headed out to the glacier. a bit of a hike before getting to the ice. around 3km in fact. we were knackard from that!

we put on our tallons and then started the climb up the man made steps to the glacier. this thing is huge.... and so pretty. lots of blue colours - caused by the snow being compressed. despite the appearance that you're climbing a vertical wall, it was fairly easy to navigate. there were ropes you could use to help you as well.

we weaved in and out of the glacier, over bridges and through crevises. meanwhile, it was piyring with rain, but it all added to the effect.

after getting quite high up, we stopped for a bite to at and some kodak moments. the view back over the valley was pretty good.

we headed back the same way, and in total spent about 1.5 hours on it, and about 4.5 in total on the experience. by the end of it, we were exhausted but we really enjoyed it. not often you get a chance to walk on a moving glacier