Monday, May 21, 2012

Gek's house.

Getting there!!! We recently bought 16 kg of  small marble  tiles for the ground floor rooms.  I think I will need to get stronger wheeled support soon. 

Friday, May 11, 2012


Sorry Auckland.  Not much to say. 

As far from natural as you can get,  an art gallery coffee shop.  Everything in this picture was crafted by machine. An end to our tour of New Zealand.

Thursday, May 10, 2012


The last contact with the coast before Auckland.

Couple of beach strollers.

And mighty waves without a surfer.

We came to see to last of the gannets.  Most have taken off across the Tasman sea having finished parenting for the year.

Wednesday, May 09, 2012


New Zealand as it used to be.   No farting cows here!!!

This kauri tree is around 800 years old,  less than half the age it could expect to be. Pink pants?   Who could that be? Humans first arrived in New Zealand 1,200 years ago and since then have been chopping down these giants.  When the Europeans arrived en-mass in the 1800's they felled them like men possessed until the kauri was all but  extinct.

Monday, May 07, 2012


After nearly 50 days of being on the road,  this really was home from home.  We got bumped up from a self contained unit B&B to a full bungalow with breakfast!!!  This place had everything.  More like we were having a home swop.

Tired of reading,  enjoy the garden.

Sunday, May 06, 2012

On to Coromandel

 Cathedral Cave on the way to the Coromandel Peninsular.

Our stay in the peninsular was just to the south of Coromandel town.  Fabulous location at the head of a sound.

With next to no ambient reflected town lights,  we had the Milky Way  in full view.

Saturday, May 05, 2012


The reef stricken Rena in the Bay of Plenty.  Her captain was taking a short cut to beat the tide window  to get inside Tauranga port. 

The bay did suffer pollution and the random falling in to sea of containers,

but no major damage on the coast line here.

Tauranga coast side from Mt. Maunganui

360 deg views form the top. Looking south. Steep walk for 45 mins or more, depending on your puff or lack of it.

Looking north.  Out next heading.

Friday, May 04, 2012

Wai-O-Tapu Hot Pools

So, how do you get a geyser to erupt a 10:15 every morning, right on cue?  Stuff a bag of soap down the hole.  Thought everybody knew that trick!

You would not want to take this mud bath.   It would remove more than impurities from your skin.

This cauldron is steaming.  The smell reminded me of the stream from railway the engines of my youth. The hole is over 180 feet deep making it the worlds largest cooking pot.  It has only been here for 700 years. It might disappear tomorrow in yet another gigantic seismic shift.

The Oyster Pool, so aptly named.  The colours come from unhealthy substances like sodium and it's friends.  Whilst walking on the designated path,  a hot rock left an melted imprint in the sole my shoe.

Thursday, May 03, 2012

Mt. Ruapehu

 Two days of patiently waiting were rewarded.

The illusive  volcanoes.  Impressive, even at this distance.

Wednesday, May 02, 2012


Another weather extreme chased us from Napier to Taupo.  100 plus km/hr winds up our tail pipe.   By the time we reached Taupo, over 150 trees were knocked over across roads  in the local area and the town's power was down.  As a result it was a couple of days before things were back to normal and we ventured out to Tarunga National park,  the home of the north Islands biggest and most vicious volcano.  A french style chateau to escape too cold blustery day.  Strange building to emerge form the fog in New Zealand.

The clouds were  still the order of the day,  with only one of the three peaks visible.

On the way back to Taupo, we spotted this, what appeared to be mist coming form the rain forest.  but no,  thermal springs.  Half way up a hill.  The North Island seems to be one big volcano floor.  

Lake Taupo is the largest of the New Zealand lakes,  being about the size of Singapore Island.  Singapore, approaching 6 million inhabitants.  New Zealand, 4 million inhabitants.

Tuesday, May 01, 2012


 Napier was effectively flattened by a massive earthquake in the 1930's.

 The rebuild town adopted the Art Deco style of architecture with a passion.

The effect is quite magical.   If I was today's Napier town planner , I would remove all the palm trees along the streets.  They diminish the collective beauty of all these lovely buildings. 

The sea front is brilliant for a stroll, 

with pretty house facing the sea.  We did manage to find some items suitable for the dollhouse in the blue shop.  Miniatures are not at all an interest of New Zealanders.  Found very little to place in the Black and White house, sadly.