During April 2011 I was very lucky to be offered a trip to New Zealand’s North Island.
On arrival we took a flight down to Wellington, the capital city, so diverse with its shops, many restaurants, historical buildings, harbour, fantastic Te Papa Tongarewa museum full of Maori arts and treasures, botanical gardens, to name a few. The cable car takes you high above the city giving the most amazing view.
Our route took us through the Rimutaka mountain range to the wine region in the Wairarapa known for its Pinot Noir. A guided tour of Napier, “the art deco capital of the world” rebuilt in 1930 having been destroyed by a massive earthquake, was fascinating. Travelling through Lake Taupo we arrived in Rotorua where you find the most awesome boiling mud pools and geysers. At our next stop Paihia, we transferred to Opua Wharf where we boarded a luxurious catamaran for an overnight cruise in the beautiful Bay of Islands.
The warm waters are home to an abundance of marine life. Making our way back to Auckland a stop at the Kauri museum proved to be very interesting, giving an insight into Northland’s pioneer past through the use of Kauri timber and gum. Auckland sprawls over a narrow isthmus between the sparkling waters of the Waitemata and Manukau Harbours. The best way to see the city’s landmark is to take a harbour cruise.
Busier than Wellington, Auckland has something for everyone and you can’t miss the magnificent Sky Tower where our farewell dinner took place in the Observatory Restaurant, 328 metres above street level. New Zealand a magical place not to be missed.