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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Paihia, New Zealand

May 15, 2008 - Day 2

We woke up and were served breakfast in our hotel room. We're not rich but DAMN we felt rich!! We checked out of our room and made our way to a dolphin cruise. We would love to show you pictures or video clips because this cruise was by far one of the coolest things ever, but Brent left the video camera in the car. We were running late to the cruise, I jumped out of the car to grab tickets, the lady literally calls the captain of the ship and stops him and the lady yells at me saying, "run! go to the boat right now!". Brent jumps out of the...

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Apr 6, 2008 - To the Bay Of Islands - Paihia

I caught the bus at 7.30 am withought a hitch and left to go north for Paihia, where the Bay of Islands are. It was a few hours drive and the bus wasn't a very full bus - about 10 people - these buses on the main route regulary hit a full 50 people. We arrived just before midday and it was not long after we had checked into our hostel that we hired some Kayaks and paddled hard over to Russell - quite a distance. Russell is one of the earliest settlements of New Zealand. It took about a 50 minute hard paddle to get there, and when we did we...

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Apr 5, 2008 - On to Paihia.

Left B&B at Whangarei - went west to Lion Man. Tour started at 11 a.m. cost $60 each and lasted for 1 and half hours. Saw 43 endagered animals including a very old Barbery lion who was used as Aslam in the film. All the animals are kept in cages with rope barriers about 3 foot away so you get good views and close ups. The closest we came was to a white tiger in his cage and about 2 feet away. Thankfully he had been hand reared so had a good nature. Still pretty scary being that close to a 400 pound tiger whose paws are bigger than your...

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Mar 24, 2008 - Paihia (Bay of Islands)

We had hired a wee car to travel around the North Island and were worried that our luggage might not fit. However, when we picked it up, instead of a small 3 door hatchback, we somehow had a 5 door saloon for the same price. Having the car means that we have a lot more freedom to stop off wherever we fancy along the way and we can find big out of town supermarkets to kit ourselves out with cheap food and wine (very important because in general we are finding NZ to be really expensive). Our first stop was another volcano at Devonport, just...

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Feb 11, 2008 - Lyle and April now in Paihia, North Island, New Zealand

John here.. I just received an email from Lyle. Lyle and April are in New Zealand now... No photos but they will try to send some soon. I'll post the email I just received below. Lyle wrote: Dear John, Sorry about the failure of the pictures to arrive. The man who helped seemed very capable. April and I are now near the top of the North Island . It is The Bay of Islands and the town is Paihia . The scenery is lovely. Some was used in the filming of THE HOBBIT. We will try to send pictures again when we stop at a place with internet. We...

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Trip Journal


Second Time Around

Feb 10, 2008 - Bay of Islands, Paihia

Today we joined our tour group, boarded the bus and took off at 8:30 in the morning. We journeyed across the Auckland Harbour Bridge, traveled through the farming communities of Warkworth and Wellsford. Our first stop was at the Matakohe Pioneer Museum, home to the world’s largest collection of Kauri gum (amber) and pioneering history of the far north region of New Zealand. The Kauri tree is an extremely old, slow growing tree. Gum forms when the tree is injured and leaks sap. Over thousands of years, these trees would be buried in swamps...

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Jan 10, 2008 - Auckland - Day 2

We picked up our 4WD early in the morning as we wanted to see the Bay of Islands, which is about a 3 hours drive north from Auckland. We arrived there about lunch time and took a ferry, it is a dream forany "Lord of the Rings" - fan ! We returned through the Northland National Park, where we passed a beautiful tropical forest and a picturesque coastline, it was absolutely breathtaking ! Of course it took quite some time so we arrived back in Auckland at about 9pm. Nevertheless we went to check out "Minus 5" that night,Auckland's edition of...

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Dec 15, 2007 - Bay of Islands

So after a 4 hour drive in the pouring rain, along numerous roads under going some sort of renovation (this seems to be a common theme all over NZ!) we arrived in Pahia, one of the main towns in the Bay of Islands. When we arrived it was STILL raining and there wasn't a soul in sight! According to the fish and chip shop owner the weather scared off the visitors and the wetness was due to continue for another couple of days. It was getting late so we parked the van right on the sea front and nipped across the road for some greasey grub and...

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Dec 15, 2007 - New Zealand - exposing the myth

We have never heard a bad word said about NZ, anyone who has ever been here loves it and anyone we have told of our plans for Christmas in NZ have been more than enthusiastic. We collected our camper van just 4 days ago and it did not take us long to feel completely at home in it. We had been looking forward to the freedom and ability to go wherever the mood took us with our home upon our backs. The great out doors beckoned and we were ready and rearing to go and find it. Talking to fellow travellers who had spent any time in NZ, most of...

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Dec 15, 2007 - Bay of Islands... part deux!

The next day we completed our circle of the north and headed back to give the Bay of Islands another go. The weather still wasn't up to much but we battled on and went to see a few sights. The Waitango Treaty House was really impressive, with a meeting house decorated in traditional wooden Mauori carvings. We also saw Mauori war canoes and a small museum/replica house explaining the history of the British in NZ and their conflicts with the natives. That afternoon we headed for a local waterfall which resembles Niagara Falls with it's curved...

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Nov 4, 2007 - Paihia, New Zealand

Drive to Paihia..... We had our longest drive today with several stops. It rained the whole way which took away from the pictures (and the ones I didn't bother taking.). First stop was at a great museum, the Kauri Museum. Kauri is a tree here that is all but wiped out due to logging. The trees are 2,000 years old (or were) and they are usually 12 feet or so in diameter. The wood is really beautiful, something like Koa wood from Hawaii. The main points of the museum were the logging of the wood, the amber from the sap, and pioneer life of...

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Oct 15, 2007 - Paihia, Bay of Islands and the Cape

Early in the morning I was back on the tour bus leaving Auckland for the most northerly part of New Zealand. At first the journey was not particularly exciting and was made even less so when we stopped at "Sheepworld" for a lunch break. Some people find sheep quite interesting but I am definitely not one of them. The only interesting thing I saw on the way up to Paihia, a town about halfway up the northern peninsula, was a hippie building that the bus drove past called "Utopia". The building was long and rounded into unusual curves and...

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