Whitianga Bay

Felicity wanted to talk to the doctor at Te Kaha’s medical centre about student placements, so we stopped for half an hour to enjoy a cup of tea with her. She told us that our planned campsite at Omaio would be very busy because it is right next to the cemetery and a big tangi is happening. She suggested we could stay at her mother’s property a few kilometers further on.
Continue reading Whitianga Bay

Maraehako

We had intended to camp just past Te Kaha, but before we arrived there we spotted some campervans and a bus down on Maraehako beach, and a small sign advertising a private camping ground. When we realised how beautiful the place was, we decided to spend $15.00 each and stay. It turned out to be money well spent – this is one of the best coastal kayaking destinations we have been to.
Continue reading Maraehako

Anaura Bay and East Cape

Because we were already inside the Eastwoodhills Abouretum when we woke up, we decided to have another walk after breakfast, and explore some of the areas that we hadn’t visited the day before.

This time we found an almond tree, which I have never seen before. The nuts (or more correctly seeds) were surrounded by a soft flesh similar to a peach or apricot, which are in the same family. Our nut collection is growing!
Continue reading Anaura Bay and East Cape

Powhiri in Whakatane

As Felicity has an event in Whakatane to attend on Monday, we decided to drive down on Friday and spend the weekend in the area. We were keen on a paddle in our kayaks, but the weather on Friday was looking a bit wild so we headed for Lake Okareka, just to the west of Lake Tarawera, in the hope that it would be relatively sheltered.
Continue reading Powhiri in Whakatane

Far North for New Year

Despite our advice to nephew Ben that Northland would be hellish between Christmas and New Year, we had a couple of visitors from West Island with us who were keen to spend the week in a tropical climate, so we went anyway. Felicity and I were in the motorhome, while Robyn and Gary drove my X-trail with our double kayak on the roof.
Continue reading Far North for New Year

Whananaki

Our plan for Anzac weekend really only extended as far as visiting Felicity’s cousin for dinner and spending the night outside his house near Parua Bay, just north of Whangarei. We were only a couple of kilometres away when there was a terrible vibration and smashing noise from the rear of the campervan, so I pulled over to the side of the road just opposite the yacht club. All the rubber tread on one tyre had de-laminated and was lying on the road about 20 metres behind us, so it was obvious we were going to be a bit later than expected.
Continue reading Whananaki

Motutapu Outdoor Education Camp

The Motutapu camp at Administration Bay is an ex-WW2 military facility that is now used mostly by school groups for outdoor education. When it is not full of school kids, members of the public can book the old barracks for group events. One of Felicity’s colleagues has a great love of the island, and decided to hold a weekend party to celebrate her 50th birthday.
Continue reading Motutapu Outdoor Education Camp