Paihia and Whitianga

After the last post, I as notified that the flying kiwi was all booked for the dates that I wanted to travel from Auckland, so decided on the Naked Bus all around the islands, meaning will be scheduling stops and activities along the way.

First stop Paihia! (pI-hay-a) Most towns around NZ have a Maori name and pronunciation. After an uneventful Naked ride, I arrive at the Pickled Parrot hostel about 2 blocks from an amazing beach. The hostel seemed very homely and everyone was very sociable. They even had a Pancake night! woo! I immediately met Rocky, the hostels parrot who meows and steals buttons, Truffles and Smarty, the dogs, and the cat. I knew from the outset that I had chosen my kind of place!

Paihia was said to be a “horrible” tourist trap, and I guess to NZ standards it is, but it is far nicer than most American beach destinations. There is a nice treelined walk to the town’s main street next to the beach with softish sand and awesome turqouis water! The main street has tourist-geared shops but nothing like the gaudy american counterparts, eg Alvins Island in PCB.

My first stop was the info booth to book a sailing cruise and tour up to cape reinga, tarputaputa bay, sand dune boarding, and the 90 mile beach. Both contained beautiful scenery, awesome water and good times all around (can u tell I’m tired of writing! 😛 )

After Paihia, it was off to Whitianga and the On The Beach the hostel. I arrived to grey skies and a so-so outlook on the weather. I decided to stay and extra day to have at least one sunny day.
I ended up traveling via car with a group of Germans to hot water beach and cathedral cove. Hot water beach was a little like a tourist trap. A hundred or so people frantically digging holes on the beach trying to find the hot springs that lay beneath with only a few having success. We ended up digging butt holes in the surf where the sand was hotest. Much less effort than shoveling and a little more fun with the occassional wave and a beer! Cathedral cove was about a 40 min hike a secluded beach with a huge “hole in the rock” that you could wander through! Pretty spectacular place!

I also visited cooks beach, lonely beach, and Shakespeare cliffs while in whitianga. Tomorrow it’s off to Rotorua for a night and then Taupo!

From here on out I will be mostly using the itouch for posts etc so typing may be slightly erratic and possibly incoherent…. Or it may just be me… 🙂

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~ by drog822 on February 19, 2010.

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