A Travellerspoint blog

Waitomo Caves

sunny 11 °C

After trying to do a skydive for the second time we realised it just wasn't meant to be and decided if we couldn't have fun thousands of feet above ground we go hundreds of metres underground.

Well 100m to be precise. We opted for a full days caving and it was awesome! The entrance to the cave was called "Lost World" which was a jaw dropping abseil down. We were greated by eels in the river and a hot brew - we were going to be underground scambling through the nooks and crannies for the next 5 hours..!

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The view from the abseil platform

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Nervous smiles!

We clambered over huge boulders and waded through ankle deep water. It gradually became knee deep and before we knew it our feet couldn't touch the floor. We were clinging onto the jagged rock edges to keep our heads above the water. The current was getting extremely strong and the water levels high, especially when the cave narrowed down to shoulder width (it was touch and go as to whether the trip would go ahead due to the amount of water). There were water ripping waterfalls to climb up and naturally, eventually jump off, but all the time trying not to get sucked under by the current.

Nic was mostly dragged though the river with her harness by one of our guides so she wouldn't get washed down stream!! In the meantime David stayed close behind just in case the guides let go!!!

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The big finale was seeing glowworms. Just before daylight crept into the cave we took a breather on a huge boulder, switched our head lamps off and were gobsmacked. All above us, on the ceiling for as far as the eye could see were a galaxy of glowworms. It was just a magnificent site and the perfect way to finish our underground adventure.

That night, feeling battered and bruised we stayed in a plane. A Bristol Freighter to be exact! We stayed in the cockpit and it was really comfy if not a little odd....

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Our room for the night!

Posted by nicdavid 03:53 Archived in New Zealand Comments (0)

Bayview Chateau, Whakapapa Village

snow 9 °C

We were feeling a little sorry for ourselves and decided we need a little tlc - off to the Chateau it was! This place was niiiice and as it was raining heavily we spent the first day playing snooker on a full sized table before filling ourselves with a 3 course meal!

The following day brought more heavy rain so we decided to head down to an indoor climbing wall. We spent half the time laughing as Nic would end up half way in the air when trying to anchor David. We also took a quick drive further up Mount Ruapehu to find a snow blizzard - ah well, we would have to spend the evening playing more snooker!

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We awoke to silence - the rain had stopped........it was now snowing!

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This place was 1250m up and at the base of an active volcano!

Posted by nicdavid 03:47 Archived in New Zealand Comments (0)

Mount Taranaki

rain 14 °C

We left sunny but chilly Wellington after a stroll up Mount Victoria.

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View of Wellington from the summit of Mount Victoria

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Early morning stroll....

and drove up to New Plymouth, home to Mount Taranaki. We arrived just in time to see the sun set behind the Mountain.

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We decided not to go mad taking photos as there would be plenty of oppportunity the following day. Oh! But there wasn't! We had rain for the rest of our time here which meant no walking, no sightseeing and absolutely no more views of the magnificent snow capped volcano!

Posted by nicdavid 03:44 Archived in New Zealand Comments (0)

Wellington

semi-overcast 11 °C
View round the world on nicdavid's travel map.

On our way to Wellington we stoped the night at a farmstay. It was a 600 acre bit of land with rolling hills as a back drop - we could have been in derbyshire. After checking out the sheep shearing shed and a walk down to the 70 acre (!) lake, we cruised down the empty back roads visting the longest place name in the world and eventually made it to just north of Wellington. We stayed at a beautiful hostel overlooking the sea, caught the sunset and a glimpse over cook strait of the south island's northern tip.

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Beat that Wales!

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Baaa..

The next day we were greated in Wellington by John and Laura. They made us feel very welcome and in our new home away from home we enjoyed a long weekend of food, drink and laughter. Let the pictures speak for themselves...

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Getting into the swing!

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Maybe a few too many!?

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Laura playing the flute

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John and his love for women's fashion accessories!!

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The beehive down-town.

Posted by nicdavid 00:05 Archived in New Zealand Comments (0)

Napier

semi-overcast 15 °C
View round the world on nicdavid's travel map.

We wondered back up to the north coast with the intention to getting over to White Island, NZ's most active volcano, but unfortunatley the weather was yet agan against us and no boats were venturing out to sea. We decided to hop, skip and jump through the mountains to Gisbourne before heading down the east coast admiring the black sandy beaches and the pounding waves of the Pacific ocean. We eventually arrived in Napier which had been devastated by an earthquake in the 1930s. The town was rebuit reflecting the era - Art Deco style. Despite not having the best weather it was still a great town to wander around and admire the architecture.

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A climb up one of the hills in the town

We also wanted to try some paragliding, but again, winter is setting in and the warm drafts needed were simply not there. Still, we wanted a climb so headed to the spot where we would have done it (Te Mata) and admired the views across one of the main wine growing regions of NZ.

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Te Mata

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Posted by nicdavid 00:05 Archived in New Zealand Comments (0)

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