More than two weeks have passed since we landed in Auckland. Meanwhile, our luggage has made its way from Singapore as well. During the first days we were busy working at a German couple’s home and garden in exchange for food and shelter, enjoyed for the first time in months having some muesli, yoghurt and cheese for breakfast and visited the ‘City of Sails’ itself with thousands of sailing and motor yachts filling its marinas.
Finally, we headed north with our newly bought campervan and were stunned by spectacular sceneries – green mountain ranges, colourful native birds, volcanoes, turquoise lakes and bays, limestone coasts and sandy beaches. The long and numerous beaches are suited to all aquatic sports imaginable, from snorkelling, diving, surfing to fishing. You simply are spoiled with choice, but for those used to Asian waters, the ocean here is freezing!
Northland also shelters the most impressive remnants of the ancient kauri forests that once covered the country’s north. The giant trees were logged in the 19th century for houses and ships’ masts. The remaining trees are quite a sight and one of the nation’s treasures. Tane Mahuta, meaning Lord of the Forest, is the largest known living kauri with a trunk girth of nearly 14m! The excellent Kauri Museum in Matakohe tells the story of these impressive trees – and those whose lives they influenced: farmers, sawyers and gum diggers.
In the following days we took a ride to Ninety Mile Beach, walked on sand dunes and made it to the northernmost tip of New Zealand, Cape Reinga, watching the Tasman Sea and the Pacific Ocean collide. According to Maori legend, this is where the spirits of the dead depart to their ancestral homeland.
Remote gravel roads led us to the dramatic and mountainous Coromandel Peninsula that offered an easy access to splendidly isolated spots. We’ll continue south along the Pacific Coast Highway to the Bay of Plenty.
Very, very nice pictures…
Ich bin jedes mal extrem neidisch auf euch beide, wenn ich eure Berichte lese und mir die Bilder anschaue. Würde auch viel lieber irgendwo am Strand liegen als hier für die Uni büffeln.
Wünsch euch weiterhin jede Menge Spaß und immer schön weiterschreiben.
Ganz liebe Grüße, Basti