New Zealand · 98 Days · 48 Moments · March 2017

Carls epic tour of New Zealand

22 June 2017

Day 34!!! 34 days in this amazing country. Time to fly to Tasmania for the last leg! Thanks NZ you've been awesome. Until next time.

20 June 2017

So after venturing to Hamilton, finally the reason I went!! GAME DAY!!!! Rocked up to get the tickets at 4 at the stadium, bought my shirt (which was the only one they had and is miles too big for me). Then went to the Londoner and met some Scottish kilted men and then some English farmers. A very good mix, I then headed off with the farmers to Shenanigans, (an Irish bar of course, which they are many of!) had another drink in there then off to the stadium we went. I stood with a kiwi couple that knew Phil and then there friends that were British but lived in NZ. The game was pretty good, not a great atmosphere as the chiefs weren't in it at all towards the end, so that sapped at the crowd. Then we headed to another Irish bar, then Riggers, apparently a famous one. Really good rock band playing but no atmosphere. Every bar had live music. There we parted ways and went to BANK, some club where I met Shane Williams, Stephen Donald (World Cup winner) and all the chiefs players.

15 June 2017

Day 23!!!! Finally reached Wellington at 7pm! BB said his little speech and played some music and some of the girls cried. It was actually pretty sad to know it was all done. Then checked into our room, usual 4, me, K, T and Charles. Tried to get BB's video done in time. I ended up missing a good two hours as I tried to get it to work they way I wanted. Finally half hour before We showed him it on the laptop and he and everyone else seemed to love it so thank god! Then we stayed in the bench bar, BB said his goodbyes, so did Hanna as her flight was in like 3 hours. Then we moved on to the establishment, which you would only enjoy if steaming drunk, then went back for the finally stay with the girls. ...and that's that!
Day 23 !! Later start from Nelson (leaving at 8:30! 😮) we gave BB his stuff. We then travelled our way thru awesome scenery of snowy mountains and frosted trees but I didn't get any pictures because the last two days on bus was getting way too much for me. So we drove to do some wine tasting at 10am no less. Tried 3 w, 1 rose & 1 red as the guide talked about this little German winery and how they definitely seem to punch above their weight and win a lot of awards. The first two whites were my preferred choice, the others were too harsh for me! Then we cracked on driving for another hour or so to Picton where we waited to board our ferry. We had to get on a different one as ours was delayed by two hours. We ended up being delayed on this one by an hour but still not as bad. It was a pretty rocky journey in the middle as the boat just swayed like crazy! As we were outnumbered completely by a load of Lions fans as well going to the next game. Tried to catch the sunset from the deck.

14 June 2017

Day 22 - The start of a very long drive to Nelson as we aren't able to go to Kaikora, as it's still badly damaged from the most recent earthquake. So practically trekking the otherside of the country to get to there, it was a full on car journey once again. We stopped at a few places but only for a bit, the beach is in Nelson and then we walked up a rather steep hill to get to the Central point of NZ. Then we finally checked into our YHA hostel at 5ish where it was a mad rush as we wanted to do the pub quiz, but there was some sort of shit that happened with the first group so we didn't. So we rushed trying to get BB a card and beer and then go to the pub ready. Me and Tarah ended up having such a shit dinner, some salted frozen food platter which was so gross and had some cocktails at the liquidnzbar. I played some pool with Charley, Jess and Maria as we were literally the only ones in there and a random band playing to no one if we weren't, then the rest joined.
Day 21 - 3/4 Finally got into Christchurch after 2pm, then checked into our Jailhouse accommodation and checked out the rooms. I shared with Carolyn this time. We then were dropped off in the centre of Cc. We walked around the shipping container mall, which is exactly what it sounds like which is a really cool idea. We then looked at the Cardboard Cathedral, which didn't honestly look like much from the outside but once you went inside the lighting and the tubing inside looked amazing. We listened to some of the young boys having their choir rehearsal which made me think of Christmas as it was so cold. Was lovely. Then we went to an art installation where there were 184 chairs to mark everyone who passed away from the 2010 earthquake that made the CCTV building collapse. It was very moving despite the traffic and passerby it was a really poignant idea and how these chairs represented all of the people, including the two babies that died. It's a shame at how bad it still is there.

13 June 2017

Day 21 - 4/4 So, we headed off to find some eats and came across 'Mexico'. AMAZING!!! Loved it. Then walked back to the hostel where we just chilled. Tried to watch the Lions game but it's all on Sky so didn't bother. Just took our mug shot photos and then most went to bed as I tried to take advantage of seeing a computer in a hostel!! So I watched some of my GoPro videos, some looked pretty good, as I was interrupted by a grown man who asked me if I wanted to play hide and seek. No thanks mate I'm 30 and by the looks of it so are you! Time to be old and go to bed. 😂😂
Day 21 - 2/4 Then after that we had another two hour drive to a very strange town that was into Steampunk, (we were dropped outside their headquarters with a poltergeist leaning out the window). We were clearly in the Victorian side of Oamaru (the town) but nothing looked open and most of it looked staged, but some places were actually real shops?? Couldn't quite make out the place to be honest.
Day 21 - 1/4 Long drive. Early start as we left the accommodation at 7am, then stopped first at Moeraki to see the boulders and got some pics.

12 June 2017

Day 20 -1/2 Up at 9am and a quick drive to the start of our bike ride. We started at 9:30 and me and Jess ended up doing it together and got to the Rail Trail Tavern pub but 12:45. We have done 24km by this point. There was another 10km to do, which I was in two minds doing but we have Curling at 3 and I wasn't sure how my timing was in order to make that. So, after warming up with a hot chocolate, Tarah, Rebecca and I went to set off first to try and get ahead. 1km in Rebecca says to turn back, we aren't doing it fast enough. So Tarah sped on and luckily we just caught BB as he was leaving with some of the others that already had no intention of carrying it on. Jess ended up walking the rest of it. So an hour past and at 3, once everyone was there we then went to the Curling indoor Centre in Naseby.
Day 20 - 2/2 Then an hour break and then 11 of us went on a 20 min drive to the Curling centre, where it's taken pretty damn seriously. I teamed up with Natalie and Sophie playing against Dan and Carrie. The others were on the next rink to us. All you could hear was the lashing of stones down the barriers! 😂😂 The other group ended up stopping early, not sure if they knew exactly what the sport was or what they were getting into but anyway they had had enough. We played up until we had to come off at 5:30 and got 4 games in. 2 we lost and 2 we drew. 🙁 Michael joined Dan and Carrie for the last two games. I finally started to get a technique going by the third game, getting the stone past the red line for it to even count, as well as not going last which I seemed to cave under the pressure! 😂 We then headed off for dinner at 7 at the pub on the side of the road and had my butter chicken. Cold, tired and starving today was an understatement.

11 June 2017

Day 19 - 1/2 Another big travel day as we got started at 7:30am for the others as they went for a misty walk around where our hostel was near the lake. We then left the hostel at 10am on a 45 min or so journey back to where we first arrived getting back on the boat again for another 45 min journey across the lake. We were then back on our bus on our way to Wedderburn, via the same the road we went on to Queenstown. We then went for a stop at Cromwell, who apparently is famous for fruits as they pretty much have taken hold of all of them.
Day 19 - 2/2 We then finally made the journey to our place for the next two nights with our lasagne and roasted veg waiting for us which was pretty nice. As we pulled up we viewed the most AMAZING sunset I have ever seen. The colours were awesome! Early night getting ready for the 35km bike ride tomorrow and the curling, (which I'm more excited for!)

10 June 2017

Day 18 - An early start 6:30am we set off from Queenstown on our way to Doubtful Sound, which apparently gets its name from Captain Cook saying he was doubtful of getting the ship he was on through as he could hear no waves. We drove to get on our first boat of the day which took 45 minutes as a taxi crossing until we got to the otherside. Where we boarded another bus driving to a ferry that took you around Doubtful Sound for around 3 hours. At one point we saw little penguins and the captain turned off his engine and asked for everyone to not speak or move to hear the sounds of nature. I could hear a number of waterfalls all around us as it rained last night (apparently). These waterfalls disappear quickly so we were lucky to see them, but we are in the notoriously wettest part of NZ. We then got back on the bus to our hostel which was 2 per room this time, Tarah and I shared. Have no service, wifi or pay per view, so no chance of watching the Lions game later. Early night it is!

9 June 2017

Day 17 - The day I lost my mind and decided to do the Shotover Canyon Swing and the Canyon Fox Swing!! WTF!!! When in Queenstown..... you have to fit in and go absolutely nuts! Last night in Queenstown was very quiet. Just got a bag ready for tomorrow.

8 June 2017

Day 16 - 2/2 After getting showered and changed and no longer smelling like horse we moved on to get dinner at Fergberger a joint that apparently is infamous for how good it's burgers are. I had a classic cheeseburger and fries and have to say it was amazing but if I knew how big these burgers were I would not have bought the fries. So after my shameful attempt at that I went solo to Red Rock to find the rest of the group. I had a few drinks but couldn't handle it past 10 and left Hanna and Tarah too it. 🎉🍻🥂
Day 16 - 1/2 Had a chilled morning in Queenstown, had a bit of a much needed lie in to try and met Natalie in the lobby to go to our horse riding, 'The River Wild' experience. After a 40 minute bus journey via a rendezvous point in a little town with only 250 people in it we checked in and got suited and booted and ready for the horses. Mine was called 'Baxter' and was the only grey horse of the lot. Once we were told how to get on the horse, steer, brake, etc the 8 of us then started on our two hour journey around the mountains and along two shallow rivers. The scenery was amazing and was lovely in the sun but once you got into the shade it was freezing. By the end my legs and feet were completely numb. I tried to firmer with Baxter as he kept trying to eat everything and stop sometimes for no reason. We did alright and came to a good understanding towards the end. He was very chilled and went at 'his' own pace the entire time which was fine for me as I could take photos.

7 June 2017

Day 15 - 3/3 Final stop in a small town of 25,000 people. We mooched around for an hour looking around and walking along the edge of the lake. Quite touristy with a few locals with a very 'ski chalet' type of vibe. We are coming into the season so we are just slightly earlier before all the skiers and snowboarders come. Then because the weather was so nice we were able to go along a road to Queenstown where you are at the same altitude as an airplane and we seen at least 2 Air New Zealand flights come in. Spot me if you can! @ Cardrona Valley.
Day 15 - 2/3 We then stopped at a little cafe in the middle of nowhere for half an hour or so and the views were just incredible. We then drove around Makororu Lake as we headed to Queenstown. With great views of the mountains.
Day 15 - 1/3 Another bitch of a car journey that lasted all day! After an early start from Franz we travelled and stopped at a few places. The first being Lake Matheson or 'reflection lake' as it's also known. The weather was gorgeous AGAIN and we walked around the entire lake which takes about 1h 30m. Photos are amazing of this one. We then moved on to see a lovely little waterfall hidden away in the rocks and behind some high trees just off a highway.

6 June 2017

Day 14 - Last day in Franz Josef. Today was a super chilled day where I did absolutely nothing. I was supposed to go to the jade carving but thought I'd save $80 bucks on something that would of looked one of my bad woodwork projects back home. So I chatted with Natalie and Carolyn for most of the day as we sat in the sun making use of the wifi. Finally got hold of my purse! So then after that waited until 7 for the free pizza and beer fest. Jessica won the contest on 18 slices, amber 17. Charley got hit on by an Aussie at the fire and then time for to pack ready for bed to head off to Queenstown in the morning!

5 June 2017

Day 13 - 1/2 ready for 9 to check in for the Helicopter hike of the glacier Franz Josef. We got suited and booted with their clothes that you have to wear. So after that we were separated into 2 different flights. I was lucky enough to sit in the front of the helicopter as we took off which was amazing. Got to see the helicopter take off and our group land on the glacier itself which was amazing! We then met up with the first group that were there waiting for us. We then met our guide Ben and started the trek. It was the best trek apparently and he had just cut those steps this morning. We seen the waterfall, two rock falls from the very top of the glacier. We then moved around a whole cut through the ice and started our way down. The Aussie girls had a competition of the best model photo and tasted glacier water which was really funny. We were a bit later on her descent than we should of, as it's all supposed to take 4 hours.
Day 13 - 2/2 We walked around some steep ice puddles as well as steep cracks as breaks in the ice that went down at least 30 feet we were told. Also the ice changes everyday from avalanches, etc, and at the rate it's going apparently in 80 years it will no longer exist. We then waited for our helicopter to come and had our journey back to base.

4 June 2017

Day 12 - A huge travel day! The biggest one so far. Got up at 5:30am then in the mini bus for 6:30am. Went to see the sea lions and pups at Then went on to see the pancake rocks at Then finally got into Franz Josef just before dark at 5pm. Got into our hostel the Rainforest Retreat, checked into our tour for tomorrow's glacier and then had some drinks and food at the Monsoon bar.

3 June 2017

Day 11 - Had a later start today and did the 4 hr walk around Abel Tasman national park. Sophie and I did the walk together. Got some good pictures and some wildlife and loads upon loads of silverferns. Because it's winter we are slightly restricted on daylight hours and what we can do. So after that we went to town to get some bits. I forgot my purse so boom boom gave me some money and then we came back. Had the cabin to myself for a bit which was nice and then the guys came back from their skydive. We then after deciding what stuff to do in Queenstown then walked miles to the only pub which is really a cafe type of place where they were showing the lions game. Me, Anna, Kristina and Tarah went together. First lions game, they won but it wasn't a great game.

2 June 2017

Day 10 - Today was mainly a travel day. After a heavy night out we where all up at 6:30am. I lost my purse as I left it at the hostel. 🙄 we then departed the hostel, said goodbye to Beth and off we went to the ferry terminal. Checked our bags, as if like in an airport and then had a 3 hour ferry ride from Wellington to Picton in the South Island. We then travelled down to Abel Tasman National Park which was another 3 hour drive on 'Gerry' our new bus. We eventually got to our accommodation around 4ish which is a very quirky Old Macdonalds farm (no joke). Where we are in little makeshift cabins. Me, Kristina, Tarah and Charly in a nice spacious 5 person room. We then had a group dinner and got told of all the activities we need to look at/book for the Franz Josef and queens town.

1 June 2017

Day 9 - Last day in the North Island. We got up fairly early from Tongariro National Park, skotia hostel, where Beth and I shared a room which looked like a ski lodge. Bit of a long drive to Taihope (tiny town) on the way to Wellington that is famous for 'gumboot throwing'. I came second behind Tarah, with a gem of a shot, but then she beat me to it! 😂 We then moved on to Wellington and checked in at around 1ish. Beth, Tarah, Kristina and I shared a room and did bit of clothes shopping and then went to a very fancy place where EVERYONE was wearing suits! We strolled in with our trainers and waterproofs on, overcompensated ordering bottle of prosecco and disaranno and the tinniest bit of chicken spending $40. So much for the cheap lunch. Then after a bit of a confused walk back in the dark. Got ready/partied straight away at 'Blender' the bar beside the hostel and met the new people of the tour. I ended up cockblocking Beth and Tarah repeatedly the whole night. Went to bed at 12:30.

31 May 2017

Day 8 - 2/2 The lakes were beautiful and once you hit the middle part of the trek the scenery dramatically changed. Forgot to mention the red crater which looked amazing. We stopped and had a bit of lunch around two of the blue lagoons which looked as if something you would swim in. Obviously too cold for that but it was great how still it was and the colours. After 5 or so hours this is when I was starting to loss my zest for it and kind of had enough which the guide really did help. I think I did get to her at certain points but hey. So I walked out at 4:30pm, making it exactly 8 hours walk and better still with Kristina and Beth, so I wasn't alone. We then headed to our weird skotia hostel behind the amazing chalet building in the photo next to these huge mountains. Oh and not to forget my smashed eclair Beth and I decided to buy at the bakery. Hers had exploded in her purse and when I was coming down the mountain fell on my arse and squashed it. Was nice though!
Day 8 - 1/2 The epic of epic walks across Tongariro National Park over an active volcano no less...! We started at 5am then traveled two hours, only stopping to get what we needed for lunch. We arrived at Tongariro Base Camp at 8am where we were given hiking boots and fleece trousers and jackets if we wanted. I bought some gloves and took the trousers and boots, but in the end never used the trousers. We then headed 20 minutes to the beginning point of the walk where we got a few starting photos then headed off for our epic journey. We would do certain points and then our guide Tina would tell us to have a break, mainly because I would stop and have my own break. They wanted to make sure we got out before dark as it gets pretty dangerous in the forest at the end. So, after walked up devils stair case and Mordor or Mount Doom we were in an old crater. Where you walked over the top and seen the lakes that had filled other existing craters.

30 May 2017

Day 7 - 2/2 We seen glow worms half way through the caving. Not nearly as much as the other cave (in numbers) but really up close which was cool. Apparently it's their poo that makes them shine brighter. Then we stopped for some chocolate and water for a little break. Then we headed on for definitely the hardest bit by trying to get back up it all. It was 80 metres that we descended at a point. It was all upper body strength that I seriously lacked by this point. Wellies full to the brim with water weighing me down and my legs giving way after the ladders and rock climbs. After which the guide (TJ) said I did well at the beginning on how quickly I did it and helped me out as I walked back up to the sheds to change. Then travelled another 2 hours to Routura, town of Ohinemutu, where We then went and met Shiloh, sung our song to him as he showed us where he lived, the church, any questions about his culture and the giesers that Routura is famous for.
Day 7 - 1/2 Went for 'Haggis Honking holes' in the Watimo caves, the same I had been to before for the glow worms but this was abseiling and crawling through the caves. Got up early from our caravan and left at 7am in a mad rush. Got on the bus and travelled about 2 hours to Watimo adventures about 10 minutes from where I was before. At 9am we checked in, only 6 of us did this, the hobbit holes caving, (couldn't do lost world option was out of season). The rest did a form of black water rafting in the caves. The trek was all together 4 hours and was intense in certain parts. first thing we did is walk through the field and then to this small hole in the ground where we then abseiled 15 feet down straight away with a slight waterfall running through it, then another one that was full on.They had a laugh with us when they at one part told us to tuck her feet and arms together and then turned all the lights of and dropped us down into a puddle of water which was only a few feet high.

29 May 2017

Day 6 - Big day today! Up early and freezing. Hiked up the hill first thing to go a barn where we given instructions about our surfing lesson, where Uncle B and his pal from yesterday doubled up as our surf instructors, accompanied by a guy known as Chef who, to put it politely was a total prick. So surfing instructions done (which I already knew from the camp). Went out onto the G bus and drove to the beach where we met them and carried the boards down. After half an hour I was done, its really not my thing and after going over several times you just have enough. Most of my photos and videos of this day are on my GoPro. After that we headed for a quick lunch where we went to a little cafe to have a hot choc and a bacon sandwich. Then had to run at the end of the lake to meet our Kayak instructor. I never kayaked before and went on my own, it was really good as we squeezed through caves. Then went and done yoga at inspiration point with some of the girls. Night of Caravan confessions.

28 May 2017

Day 5 - 1/3 Early start from Auckland as we travelled 2hrs or so to Jan's farm. Jan is a scientist who treats and harvests Eels on her farm, as well as some endangered fish. It gave you a bit more of a sense of what Gadventures is about and the organisations they work with. As we drove up a secluded hilly drive way, there were a few wooden houses, where we were greeted by Jan, Minty (her dog) and the two sheep Teddy Bear and Scotty. She took us around where we also met little baby Vincent, a black lamb that his mum had disowned him. There were a few lamas, donkeys and horses as well. Jan spoke about the conservation for clean water effort and how this will be the new challenge for the next generation. Her and her husband (who has sadly passed) dedicated their whole lives to keeping these eels and fish from exstnction and protecting the water and NZ natural environment that is constantly under threat.
Day 5 - 3/3 Finally arrived at our Lava Lounges accommodation where me, Tarah and Beth decided to go for the Caravan, which was interesting but fun as well. We hiked up the huge bloody hill to 'Inspiration Point' where we watched the sunset and messed around and did Yoga poses. Natalie, will and Sophie were the only ones that came up which was strange as it was such a beautiful spot as we past the time until dinner which Beth and I went halfers on and cooked Pasta, bacon salad which was yum! Some of the girls who were in the house (which was a bit like an airbnb house) braved the temperatures and went into the hot tub outside. It looked amazing but I just couldn't venture in. The three of us went back to our caravan where we shared some good laughs and getting to know each other a bit more.
Day 5 - 2/3 After Jan's we had another 2 hr or so drive to get to Raglan where we boarded our own private ferry harbour cruise around the rocks and scenery. Every angle looked amazing and the pictures still don't quite do it all justice. We had our lunch on the boat with some beers, cooked by Uncle B and his pal. As we were heading out to a more turbulent part where the rocks parted and you met more of the ocean we seen a man walking with a board attached to him. We waved and he waved back but then the boat started to stop and he ended up boarding. Turned out he hurt his back and needed some help. Was the calmest bloody guy who needed saving that's for sure! So after we maxed out our cameras and were stuffed from the food we headed back to where we started and headed into the centre of Raglan town. Where we messed about on a surf board, bought our alcohol and snacks, etc. I liked the vibe, it was small and cute with a number of places to eat for it's size.

27 May 2017

Day 4 - 1/2 Today was the first proper day we picked what we liked to do. So as I had already seen and heard a traditional Haka dance and the Treaty being signed, etc, which was what pretty much all the group went to do. I decided to get on a ferry to Russell which is over the other side of where we were staying, but still part of the same island. 9am caught the short ferry over which had amazing views of all the little inhabited islands in between where all the birds hang out. I walked around for two hours, took some good photos and a few touristy things and a drink in the sun. I was back over the other side by 12:30, where the guys went to lunch at a pizza place and I stole the wifi, talking to Beth about her awesome skydive that she had done. After lunch we were back on the bus for the 4 hour drive back to Auckland, staying in Nomads. We caught the sun setting which was cool and BB told us some good spots to check out.
Day 4 - 2/2 We went to the Wynyard Quarter for dinner and ended up eating at a really nice Tapas restaurant. We then walked back to Nomads along the viaduct as everyone was out and it was all busy being a Friday night. Tarah and I had a good chat on the way to it, as we started to get our stuff together the fire alarm went off as we were going to bed. The whole hostel was evacuated. Poor Charlie stood in her towel with soaking wet hair as she went to come out. I told her to go back and throw any clothes on she could find. She then came out with clothes and just the towel on her head freezing as BB and all the guys took selfies in front of the fire engine!! 😂😂

26 May 2017

Day 3 - 2 As soon as we came off the boat we then headed on to do the parasailing, which was absolutely terrifying. This was not something I'd do again, being attached by this rope that just kept creeping every second as you realised we are in a parachute around loads of mountains, just as you would get used to it a major wind surge would throw you around making the rope creek even louder. I tried to keep calm and to not ruin Beth's experience but it was just not my thing. We were the 3rd couple to go, which was good because if we were 5th and last, I would of absolutely freaked out. Alejandra and Anna were shitting it. So yeah had to suffer two more couples before I absolutely wanted to hurl my whole body over the side. Two boats in one day is not what I can handle. We then went to an ice cream shop for that and coffee and had a chat with Kristina, Tarah and Beth. We then went back to our rooms to change for dinner which was at the restaurant beside the hostel. Really awesome burgers
Day 3 - Bay of Islands 1/2 We went for a ride on one of the speedboats as we couldn't go on the houseboat anymore. So we had a little tour of all the little islands and some history about them all. We then moored at x and then stayed there most of the morning. Some of the girls paddle boarded and snorkelled along the rocks. I chilled out on the beach. Towards the end we picked our own 'bay oyster', I gave Kristina mine. Then some tried the sea urchin as we were showed how to cut them and the part you eat.

25 May 2017

Day 2 - 3/3 Lastly before checking into our accommodation our last stop was Haruru Falls, which was a pretty cool spot as well which flows under a road bridge now.
Day 2 - 2/3 Whangarei Falls, in the town called Whangarei. A little town with nothing but this amazing waterfall. We went to a stop at a cafe and had lunch. Spoke and got to know Chloe and Hannah then went to see the waterfall. We then arrived at our accommodation at Bay hostel where we stayed for two nights as we were informed earlier that we couldn't stay on the houseboat anymore as the engine had blew up. We checked in and I was in a room of 5, me, Tarah, Beth, Kristina and Charly. We sat in the room and got to know each other a bit as we tried to chill out and we started drinking and playing all different types of card games before dinner. Trying to teach Charly how to play bullshit was hilarious. The amount of 6's and 9's that were called consisted of having three more decks of cards and just no one wanting to call anyone out on it! We then went for dinner, which was a little BBQ buffet at the hostel next to us. Got very drunk and played Beer Pong. T was hilarious dancing around.
Day 2 - 1/3 head off from Auckland to the Bay of Islands. It's a 4 hour drive there and we stopped at least 3 times to break up the journey. The first place was to see a tree. A special tree in Maori culture, which they believe stemmed from their ancestors as some of these are 800 years old or more. After that we then went to the Goata island for a bit. This is where you would snorkel in the summer and there was people there doing it from another tour but we weren't given the option as it's out of season. So we did a bit of a walk with Tarah, and walked around the beach checking out the wildlife.

24 May 2017

Day 1 (official tour) Last full day in Auckland before the tour starts. The Americas cup sailing didn't go ahead as they needed 8 of us to do it and I think only 3 paid it. So I just had to walk around the city and shopped around a bit. Then came into my room mid afternoon and met Tarah a Canadian girl from Alberta and Carolyn, (also Canadian) from Ontario. We had a good chat and then met everyone in the Nomads shop for the meeting at half 6. Met 'Boom Boom', our guide who was slightly drunk before the meeting. It was all very socially awkward as the 20 of us all introduced ourselves. Then we went to a Thai restaurant up the street, which got my order from and gave me 4 dollars back, wasn't great. Then went the fancier bar next to the hostel and had one drink and met Beth, Kristina, Sophie and Natalie and a German girl Francesca. Then headed off to bed.

23 May 2017

My only planned free day in Auckland. Chilled out and just used the hostels wifi I paid for until 2 and then checked in at Nomads into my room. Such a difference from Fat Camel hostel which was shockingly bad!! Chilled out and met Charly one of the German girls and then there were two blokes who left the next day.

22 May 2017

Auckland Day 2 - Had to go into the centre of town to catch my bus before 8am. It's about 2 1/2 hour drive from Auckland. Once we arrived at the gift shop and cafe, we then have another guide that takes you into Ian Alexander's farm which was used as the location for all the films. Then after getting my photo last after 30 other people had done it, we then moved to 'The Green Dragon' 🐉 and had a drink in there. Then we had a huge buffet lunch in a marquee beside it. After that there was another small gift shop and I caved and bought something but it was just a couple of postcards. After went to the Caves, which was 1 hr and a bit from Hobbiton. We got to the caves and learnt that the glow worms had been depleted by at least 33,000 by Cyclone Debbie, and there was a line of how high the water was which was above my head. (Couldn't take photos) after that we went down into the cave and I had to hitch a ride with another group and do a boat ride through. Even seen a rare flying one!

21 May 2017

20 May 2017

Auckland - landed at midnight. Got onto the sky shuttle night bus and then checked into the Fat Camel hostel on Cussoms street. The room was pretty shocking, beds you couldn't sit up in, the door didn't shut so you had to put a fan behind it which everyone crashed into and woke everybody up and the 2 showers on offer in the communal part which had 15-20 girls in it was pretty challenging. So after getting not the best of sleeps I was up bright and early for my SkyWalk, which was great. Glad I done it, got nervous as time went on but it was not that scary when you go up there. Met an Australian guy and 3 women that worked together who were doing it for a laugh I guess... on a Sunday. One of the women tried to set me up with every guy there from the guides to the guy with our group. Then I walked around the pier and parts of the city.

16 March 2017