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Thursday 28 Feb
Rotorua, New Zealand

Awesome road trip

Had a along bus journey to Auckland. Its surprising how fun a long journey can be when there are quizzes and Marc is dressed up in a tutu (don't ask)! We arrived in centre of Auckland and made our way to Kate's (vals friend from college) house. They lived in a nice suburb and we had a nice evening eating burgers and chatting. Next day we picked up our 'rent a dent' hire car (very cheap) and set off on our road trip around the north island. First destination of the day... Hobbiton. Once a place in our imaginations, it had been bought to life as a permanent film set after the recent filming of the hobbit. We had a great time seeing the 42 hobbit holes, and drinking in the green dragon. We continued our journey to Rotorua. I was excited as this was Karen's fave place on the north island. I can see why! The first thing we noticed was the sulphur smell. Rotton egg! This is because rr is a geothermal active area. Not exactly sure how it works but the heat from underground creates hot springs and mud pools etc and every where you look steam rises from the ground. The smell could be lived with because the place was so unique. Also a cultural hub for the Maori people.

    Our 3 nights here were spent:-

visiting amazing redwood pine forest 

going to wai-o-tapu thermal village and seeing and smelling all sorts of strange things

going to a Maori night to learn about their culture 

relaxing at lakes and hot pools 

getting a hair cut (even travellers have to do normal stuff sometimes)

great place!

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