Auckland is built on 48 volcanoes! New Zealand sits on the edge of the Pacific and Australian plates which is why there are SO many volcanoes. Because it is an island, after the age of dinosaurs, there were no mammals here ONLY birds (they flew here). The MOA was 3m tall (9 feet!) and looked like a ostrich or emu and was a flightless bird.
Steamy in ROTORUA
Bubbling mud pools, gurguling hot springs, gushing geysers
I loved ROTORUA! WOW!! so much thermal activity. This is one of the places where the earth’s crust is the THINNEST in the world. At Te Puia, we saw mud at 92degrees and it was bubbling…we saw geysers, a Maori show, and so much more. Here is the photo link:share.shutterfly.com/action/welcome?sid=0BaN3LRuybsWHh
Bay of Islands–Kauri trees, Haruru Falls, Rainbow Falls
What a tour we had in the NORTH–Bay of Islands. We saw rainbows, waterfalls, the lighthouse at the TIP of the north Island! We saw where the Pacific Ocean (means passive in Portugese) meets the Tasman Sea (lighter color and more heavy seas). The old growth Kauri trees are AMAZING–they are related to Redwoods and Sequoias. We hugged a few trees and of course took photos. The most amazing thing was SAND SURFING!!! We hiked to the top of a sand dune (after our bus drove on the SAND carefully avoiding the quick sand and then down a river–the bus has special seatbelts and is actually a truck not a bus) and we lay down on boogie boards and ZOOMED down the dunes!! I did scream the whole way but George went twice and I got a great video of him. It was really fantastic!
Kia Ora (hello in Maori language)
We have had a fantastic time in New Zealand. BUT since we are SOUTH Of the equator it is WINTER here…and in Rotorua it was -3degrees celsius (27F) at Night—-I wore 4 long sleeve shirts, a cashmere sweater and a raincoat…and I was still cold. People kept telling us it was not that COLD! And they left all the DOORS OPEN! In the North, we were in Paihia during the Gale Force Winds Brett. So we have seen a TON of rain and luckily a TON of Rainbows!! We did read that many people noticed so many TEETH in our photos….we did have to take some sad face photos in the rain and cold! We go next to Sydney, Australia. Thinking of you!
Happy Labor Day Weekend!
Lisa and George