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Dora The Explorer
12th Mar 2007 - 19th Mar 2007
The North Island

I have to say that as much as I am a townie I prefer the beauty of the 'sarf' island to that of the North. Wellington being the political hub of NZ and corporate suits didnt really get my toursim juices flowing. But that said thier musuem 'Te Papa' is ace, I hadn't realised the magnitude of earthquakes and volcanic activity that resided here. The landscape is quite unusual where large hillocks rise from the ground next to completely flat residential areas. Think Devon and little windy streets where houses are built up on high plots of land, large bay windows looking out onto the ocean. The North Island driver Peter gave us a few shocks...this was one of them navigating the sheer hair pin bends getting to Mount Victoria. The other was his obsencely short shorts and long socks- outrageous. It gave us plenty of entertainment throughout the journey. Maybe he harboured a long desire to be an extra for 'Carry On Camping'

Rotorua smelt like rotten eggs quite frankly due to the suphur from the famour hot springs. We were lucky/ unlucky enough to have our hotel right on one of the lakes where the pungent smell was stongest. A few Bushmills & Ginger were needed at dinner to combat this.

This part of the trip seemed to disapper very quickly as we were in Auckland before we knew it and back in a big city. This was were the tour ended and it was actually very sad at the Last Supper to say bye to people. I came away with a few address and emails but South Africa is up there come the end of this year.

Mum and I had a few days together by ourself before we headed off our separate ways. In this time we took in the famous Skytower and watched with amusement the poor skyjumpers who were being pushed off the top. To my luck one of my favourite DJ's Nitin Sawhney was playing in the Auckland Film Festival with the ASOrchestra, having re-written the score of music for the famous Indian film A Throw of Dice. For those who have never listened to this guy- do it!

I couldnt have asked for a nicer ending to our holiday. Unless of course Nigel Harman was sitting next to me watching it. I was dreading the next day and saying adios to mum- it never gets any easier!! I thought I had managed to leg it onto the shuttle bus before making her cry but no such luck. I sat for the remainder of the journey looking like a berk trying to hide my tears under my new ray-bans. The old dear next me gave me a tissue.

Mother thanks for such a fab holiday, it was great seeing you again and I am glad that you made it home one piece! Make sure you combat your jet-lag before trying any ardous chores. See you Christmas x

Next: Happy Days
Previous: The South Island

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