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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Auckland, New Zealand

Aug 11, 2015 - Road Trip-Auckland

Check out motel about 10ish before heading north. Plenty of time so a stop at Tirau for brunch.Then an amble through to Simon and Kellie's to arrive around 4ish. This is our base/home for the next 4 days. Had a visit to Mt.Eden shopping area. Bumped into Kerry and Pat one day while we were having a morning coffee-only in Auckland! Took in "The Beatles" show one night-very slick presentation. Also a visit to Sky City one night to have dinner with Simon and Kellie. Unfortunately restaurant was to suffer a major fire while we were away. But we...

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Trip Journal


OUR VISIT TO HELEN

Apr 28, 2015 - Off to Auckland

Tuesday 28 April 2015 Woke to a nice day in Rotorua. Weather front moved through very quickly, and we have just had the odd shower today. Looks like the forecast for the rest of our stay is very good. Our first stop was Hobbiton where the Lord of the Rings trilogy and the Hobbit movies were filmed. Not having seen these movies (and now we will have to see them), we wondered if the admittance fee of NZ$75 would be money well spent. Just as well we all agreed to go ahead as we had the most fantastic two hour journey through Hobbiton. Our...

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New Zealand 2015

Apr 24, 2015 - Around Rotorua

Friday 24 April 2015 Decided on a quieter day today and planned to go into Rotorua township, have a look around and decide what we would plan for the day. The best laid plans sometime go astray, and after leaving the unit around 10am, we called into reception, gathered some literature and set off for town. We promptly found a Coffee Club en route into town, and after checking out some brochures, we headed for the Redwoods Whakarewarewa Forest, a thoroughly enjoyable place, and did the 2km walk through the forest. We then headed into town,...

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New Zealand 2015

Mar 9, 2015 - Auckland - Day 3

Auckland - Day 3 (last day here) I planned to take a ferry over to Rangitoto Island, which is the most recent volcano to erupt in the Auckland area (over 600 years ago), and hike to the summit. Alas, rainy weather did not make that a feasible idea. However, I did manage to see and photo some of the yachts in the Volvo Round the World Race during this stopover in Auckland. They are cool looking boats. I also saw the hull and keel of NZ1, which lost to Dennis Connor's catamaran in the America's Cup. Pictures of both are in this posting. I...

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Mar 8, 2015 - Auckland - Day 2

Auckland - Day 2 Several interesting facts I learned today: 1. Auckland has about 1.5 million of New Zealand's 4.0 million population 2. Some kid named Lorde went to grammar school in the village of Devonport. She apparently just won a Grammy. Who knew? Who cares! 3. Auckland's harbor is called Waitemata Harbor, which is Maori for Wai meaning Water and Temata meaning Sparkling. This is an apt name for this beautiful body of water. 4. New Zealand means Land of the Sea from Dutch. Dutch? You ask. Well, it seems that a Dutch guy named Abel...

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Mar 7, 2015 - Auckland - Day 1

Greetings from Auckland. Here it is 7 March, but not yet for you. The Air New Zealand flight was long, but fortunately arrived early. Curiously, my seat mate (lucked out and had no middle seat companion) was Jeff from Minneapolis. He is a manufacturing engineer, and his company made parts for both NASA Mars Rovers. How cool! Since my hotel room was not ready, I went exploring Auckland. The Sky Tower is over 1,082 feet tall (looks sort of like the Seattle Space Needle). Several of the attached pictures are taken from there, including one...

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Mar 4, 2015 - Biking on Waiheke Island

Our last day in Auckland was spent in a few shops in the downtown area then on Waiheke Island with Lonnie who is a long time friend of Colleen. Waiheke Island is about a 45min ferry ride out of the harbor. The villages are few and far between (at least by bicycle). The big attraction are the wineries and art shops. We spent our time on bikes (or walking our bikes since some of the hills were quite steep). Tip of the day: rent scooters if you come here. After we arrived back at the harbor we had dinner along the wharf where the yachts in the...

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Mar 3, 2015 - New Zealand Wine Country

Most of our day today was spent visiting New Zealand Wine Country about 30min outside of Auckland. We visited three wineries: Soljans where we also had lunch, Matua, and West Brook. New Zealand is still a small wine producing country but is growing. There are about 500 wineries in the entire country compared with 600+ in Napa and Sonoma. Due to the warmer climate (no frost) white wines are favored over reds. Most popular are Savignon Blanc, Pinot Gris, and Chardonnay and the most popular red is Pinot Noir. We tried all 4 at each winery but...

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Feb 26, 2015 - Auckland, New Zealand

Pete called from the ship a day before they were to arrive in Auckland. He said things were going well on the ship and he had no problem keeping up with his new workload. When we asked about some of his new job responsibilities, he said that he had already attended 2 cocktail parties hosted by the Captain for frequent cruise guests. He said they were just fine and that, since he only had to actually attend for 15 minutes or so, he could just introduce himself to a guest and then they would pretty much do the talking and, before he knew it,...

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Feb 15, 2015 - Rose & Stuart in North Island

This is about our (limited) time in the North Island, starting at Wellington in the south, driving upwards to Auckland in the north. Arrived Wellington 6th Feb. Collected new hire car (not hire care as in my previous entry!), we have Toyota Highlander, newer than previous car but petrol this time, rather than diesel. We stayed in Travelodge for 2 nights, our friends Lindsey & Chris stayed in another hotel nearby on Fri night, we met up and they took us out for 'tappanyaki' meal; Japanese food which is cooked at your table on hot plate by a...

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Feb 13, 2015 - Auckland, New Zealand

Pete was busy on the ship when they were in Auckland and did not have time to visit the port. He has had more life boat training, as well as conducting passenger drills and other administrative jobs on the ship. He told us that there was one girl in his lifeboat training class who could not swim so she just jumped into the pool in a life jacket and the other crew members had to drag her around in the water! We're not sure what kind of help she would be in an actual emergency. The band is playing well and they have had several interesting...

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Jan 29, 2015 - Auckland, New Zealand

Peter had a stop in Auckland today but we have not heard from him at this point. Auckland is the largest and most heavily populated area in the country. It is built on a string of volcanoes, all of which are extinct but the volcanic field is just considered dormant. Hopefully, there will be not volcanic activity while Pete is there!

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