White Cliffs

On the way back from the Three Sisters and Elephant Rock we went to the White Cliffs.

Aliciane had been here before with Schoko and they did the walk, but they were not able to get down to the water though and it was high tide when they turned up. Even after waiting for five hours they were not able to get onto the beach to see the cliffs.

It was very pretty to walk down to the beach.

The view from the road down to the beach.
The colours in the rocks are great – also this is a dog Jannes made friends with.

I love the colour of the layers in the rocks.

We met the cutest dog ever (no idea what his name was). He was fun to run along the beach with and we tried to teach him fetch, but he was not having any of it.  Jannes wanted to take him home ha.

A small hello from me.
Here is a better picture of the dog

Dog selfie.
Aliciane and I

Jannes really doesn’t look impressed here!

Lake Rotomanu, New Plymouth

Lake Rotomanu

Doesn’t she look lovely?

I went out here with Aliciane in March which was great.  We were lucky with the weather and it was very peaceful.

Mount Taranaki

Even the mountain can be seen from the lake.

This is where we stopped to sit an enjoy our surroundings.

You can walk all the way around the lake and it is mostly grass which isn’t too muddy.  That means you don’t have to wear your big hiking boots, but don’t wear your best shoes if you are heading out here.

You can fish here, but I didn’t see anyone fishing.

 

Te Huneui Walkway, New Plymouth

I love this walkway.  I mean seriously it is beautiful and also right outside my door at Sunflower lodge.  It is at the end of the drive and either turn left to get away from the coast or right to walk towards it.

I have done the walk to the coast many different times and on a few different days.

There was only one day that I hated the walk and that was not long after it stopped raining. I had fallen over in the wet mud and landed on my bottom which hurt quite a bit, but I got up and carried on.

That day it also changed from gorgeous sunshine when I left the hostel to rain by the time I reached the beach and I ended up getting soaked.  Yes it also stopped by the time I made it back to the hostel. Sod’s law.

It may seem a little morbid at first, but youwalk through a cemetery.
It is a beautiful one though and they really do take care to maintain it all.

It goes on for miles!

You cannot really see it, but the tiles on this one were lovely and actually really bright when the sun hit it.  I did try and wait around for the sun to come back out, but as you can see there are loads of clouds and I guess the sun didn’t want to play this day.

I think this is the oldest grave I saw whilst here.  I am sure there are more, but I didn’t find them. Not yet anyway.

I never thought I would see a bridge at a graveyard?? But here you have it!

After the cemetery you walk through a bit of bush to get to the river which is lovely.

Artsy Shot.

Here is the bush area, not too much bush as it has been gravelled because of the many people who walk it.

More artsy shots.

You then get to a lovely river.

It’s quite a peaceful river unless it has been raining heavily.

Then it becomes a little rougher, but still lovely to sit and watch.

I am a bit in love with water; falls, lakes, rivers, sea.

Small stream which then joins the big river.

One of my favourite views of the walk.

I think this might be my favourite part of this walk. You cannot see the river until you are right at the bend in the road and it just looks luscious and green.

When I got to the sea on this day there were lots of kite surfers out.  It was great to watch, some of the jumps the guys do are really scary!

Als you can see that it is quite dark on the pictures, that is because this is where it rained on me 😦

Pukekura Park, New Plymouth

This is another favourite place of mine here in New Zealand. Here in New Plymouth specifically but a good place to come.

I keep going back to this park.  I love it here and if you look below you will see why.  I definitely recommend it for anyone who comes here to New Plymouth.
It is over the road from the Sunflower Lodge where I am currently working and am living.  That is one of the many reasons I love it here.

Here is the map of the park.You can also see where the lodge is to where I am going most days for a wander.

As I mentioned, I am pretty much here most days for a wander, even when I walk to the town I walk back through the park as it is really pretty. Just have a look for yourself.
The lake in the park.

The sun shining down on the ferns.
Pukekura Falls.

These falls are man-made and make a lot of noise but was hypnotic.

Also within the park you have the TSB Bowl of Brookland.

It is very pretty and is often used for events, there was a film festival in February before I got here and whilst I was in New Plymouth there was WOMAD which stands for World Of Music, Arts and Dance.  It’s a massive event and got a huge amount of people to the area. The people who stayed at the lodge had been coming to this place for years and I even took bookings for the following year already.

TSB Brookland bowl.

It really is a perfect setting for festivals.

There are also lots of sculptures on the rivers, along with fountains with some of them too.

I think this one was meant to be of swans, I don’t really get it though.

There are so many flowers around too, these are taken at the end of summer so some are on their way out, but there are loads which are still in bloom.

The main entrance to the park.

This is actually the main entrance into the park from the town centre. Yes, I am aware this should probably be at the start of the post, but as I said I went on so many different days and you can see that the weather doesn’t look as good in this one.

There are lots of these bridges going across the rivers which really do stand out in their red colour.

Coastal Walkway, New Plymouth

So this post covers a couple of different days a couple of weeks apart. That is because the coastal walk is 12.7 KM long and a little too long to walk in one day.  Not too long to cycle though and a lot of people do hire a bike. Obviously I am trying to save my money so I am walking everywhere.

I did a tiny bit of this walk on my second night here in New Plymouth.  I had completed a shift at the Sunflower Lodge YHA Hostel and sat down to read for most of the afternoon.  I know that is being lazy but it had been a while since I actually had a chance to sit in quiet and read.  Schoko, one of the girls also working in the hostel said she was heading out to the beach and asked if I wanted to tag along.  Of course I said yes, it is a beach after all.

To get to the beach we walked part of the Te Henui walkway, click here if you would like to see a map of the full walk. We went from the end of the drive at Timandra Street and took about 30-35 minutes to get to the beach. The weather was lovely.  Schoko went for a swim but I only paddled.  I did regret not taking my togs when I got down to the beach. Live and learn, right?

I did get to go rock pooling though, check out the photo’s below.

This is from the Te Henui walkway along the river before you get to the coast.

Where the river meets the sea.
This beach is lovely.

To read more about the beach on my first day here, click here.

The next bit I walked was below (from point 11 to point 19), it was after a shift at the hostel and then I went out.  It was very hot but a great walk.  The map comes from this website which I recommend checking out if you are coming here.

Part of the walk from above.

The pathway is all concrete or wooden so you can get away with sandals or comfy pumps. I wore my flip flops.

The Wind Wand by Len Lye.

The Wind Wand and is is 48 metres tall.  It was designed by Len Lye who was born in 1901 and died in 1980.

You can see the scale if you can see there is a man who is stood near the bottom of it.

This is called the Honeyfield Fountain which was donated by the Honeyfield family in 1907 to provide drinking water for the railway station which used to be near by.

The way back.

Look how far this goes on, I walked all along here.

So, it is a few day’s later and after the rain we have had I am eager to get back out.  I started at the Hostel and headed down the main road to get to the point I started and finished before.  But this time I turned right.

I love the look of the sun on the sea.

This way was lovely when I could see the sea, but a lot of it is on a path a little away from the sea.

You do however, get to see the Taranaki.  I am pretty sure you can see this mountain from most places around New Plymouth, but it is just as beautiful from afar.

But when you meet back up with the sea there is some amazing views. There is also some great views of the Lake Rotomanu.

You also see the bridge which is pretty famous here in New Plymouth.

It is quite cool, having the skeleton of the wave.

There is also another little bridge before you get to the famous one which provides some great views of the river flowing into the sea.

On the way back, I walked along the beach whilst paddling, it was lovely.

I even got to play with a couple of dogs and speak to a lovely local woman who has lived in New Plymouth her whole life. She has not been to the UK, but she has done some travelling in Europe so we talked about that for a while.

As I said at the beginning, this is a 12.5 KM walk, and although I would be comfortable doing that in one day, I didn’t because I had to walk 3 KM down to the starting point and back again.  So this walk was 24.5 KM for me.

Huatoki Walk, New Plymouth

I didn’t have to work today so I figured I would go for a walk.  I told Aliciane (backpacker from France who is also working for accommodation here) and she asked if she could join me.  It was nice to go for a walk with company.

Anyway I decided I was going on the Huatoki Domain walkway. It’s about a 50 minute walk away from the hostel, which is actually one of the closer ones to me.

Anyway, when we got there it was roughly 11 am and we wandered around the bush trail they had marked out.  There were lots of lovely views around the place.

 Some of the areas looked really tropical.

A little stream.

There were lots of little streams.

This park was huge, It seemed to go on for miles!

Here is a picture of the dam which is in the middle of the domain.

 We did not do the whole walk though as it starts in the town and we were already half way up the roads so here is the map for the full walk if you are interested.

East End & Fitzroy Beaches, New Plymouth

I have arrived in New Plymouth and feeling a little too new so I make myself known to the other two girls who are staying here and let them know that I will be working with them.  Seems obnoxious, right?  Well sometimes it is the only way to get someone to talk to you ha.

Schoko (Japanese backpacker who is working for accommodation at Sunflower lodge YHA)  said she was heading to the beach and asked if I wanted to come along, I said sure so we headed to the sea.

To get there we walked part of the Te Henui walk way.  Here is a map of the walk and we went from the end of Timandra St. We pretty much just stayed at the beach which was lovely.  Schoko went in for a swim but I just wandered and paddled.  I also when rock pooling which was great.

Here is a little picture from the Te Henui Walkway along the river, just before you get to the beach coastal walk.

Look how lovely the black sand is.
If you want to understand a little about black sand, click here.

There was a kite surfer who was playing in the sea for ages. At one point I watched him do a jump and hook his feet on the bar he would normally hold onto when he was in the air.
Then the kite came down and he went into the water head first and I thought he had hurt himself but he got back up with another jump.  It looked so scary!

Yes, I would like to try it – ha!

Eastend beach, New Plymouth
It’s a lovely beach.
I think it is a whale / large fish bone – at least I hope.

When I was wandering around I found a bone, I sure has help hope it wasn’t a human one.

There were some sea snails too.

 Oh and a crab.  He was so quick I almost missed him before he buried himself in the sand.

Rotorua Skyline Gondala and zip line

On my last night in Rotorua, I went to the skyline which was great fun.
I went up in the Gondala which was $30 and the views of Rotorua were amazing. You get to see the lake and the town.

Skyline is a small adventure playground where you can zip line, do the gondola ride and many more things.  It is definitely a must if you are here because I really had so much fun.  Even did something which was a complete shock, I didn’t think I would do it – keep reading!

Just enjoy the views below;

View of Lake Rotorua from the top of Skyline.
The rain clouds were leaving us which was great.

Me doing the tourist thing.

They call this the Vegas of Rotorua, hence the sign.  but it really was so much fun!

I even got to do a zip line and it was so exhilarating. I went about 85kmph down it all.  I really want to do it again!!

I did get a video so if you want to check it out, click here.

There is even a jump which you can do at the end.  It is 18 metres high and you go off backwards.  I guess that makes it more of a fall.

Yep – that is it, below.

The 18 metre jump / fall.
Yes I did it!!

I was so glad I did it, petrified before I fell but the Adrenaline rush you get afterwards it amazing!

I was super happy!

Me after the jump.

 

Huka Falls, Taupo

This is another one of my favourite places I have been so far here in New Zealand.

 

The Huka falls are the largest falls on the Waikato River and they are very beautiful.  I mean check out the colour, please note none of these images have been edited.

The first part of the Huka falls.

The top of the falls.

Maori Hapu (sub-tribes) lived and worked in this area centuries before the arrival of Europeans. They understood and made use of the volcanic and geothermal landscape, cultivating land, harvesting fish and gathering kokowai (red ochre) from the hydro-thermally altered soil.

In the 1870s, Europeans began to settle at the outlet of the Waikato River, on the edge of lake Taupo. As Sergeant Talty predicted the region’s attractions gained International Repute and Huka Falls became a ‘must-see’ on young New Zealand’s tourist itinerary.

As the 20th century progressed, the Waikato developed into one of the country’s major electricity-producing rivers. It supplies eight hydro-electric stations and provides them with cooling water for three other stations, two of them geothermal and one thermal. The Waikato River system produces about 15% of New Zealand’s power.

Peaceful part of the falls once the rushing water finishes.

I love that one side of the river was so rough and dangerous and then the other end looks so peaceful. It was cray to see the two comparisons so closely together.

A side view of the falls.

I even got to pose with the falls just behind me.

About 200,000 litres of water plunge through the nine metres over the great rock face of Huka Falls every second – that is enough to fill five Olympic swimming pools every minute. Such a momentous flow of water creates a dangerous undertow at the bottom of the falls. This has claimed the lives of many of those who try to raft the falls.

Further upstream of the falls is the Waikato River and it is clear and reflective. After plunging over the falls it picks up masses of tumbling air bubbles which create the breathtaking colours and give the falls their name.  Huka, the Maori word for foam.

The flow over the falls is so strong it prevents the upstream migration for trout and other native fish like eels.  This is why there are no eels in Lake Taupo.

The peaceful lake.

Below is Reid’s farm and it is a beautiful spot to freedom camp.  It has toilets too, which is rare for freedom camping.  There are no showers but that’s fine for a poor mans shower for one night isn’t too bad.

It is further down the same Waikato River.

Look how clear the water is.
I love the colours.

There were people bungee jumping here which was amazing to watch – even made me wonder if I want to do it… watch this space.