Weekend in Northland, New Zealand.

This past weekend I went up to Northland with a friend from Holland. We rented a car and drove from Auckland to Cape Reigna. Spent most of the time driving, but I didn’t mind it because the scenery was so cool. First stop was at Goat Island Marine Reserve where there was some pretty awesome snorkeling. Just walked in the water with fins and snorkel on and there were some rocks where some fish were hiding but they were curious at times. After a couple hours of exploring Goat Island we headed up north to Paihia, near Bay of Islands. We wanted to go on one of those trips where you swim with dolphins but it was a little expensive and we woke up a little too late. So we spent most of Saturday on a beach getting some sun, swimming and snorkeling. The water was nice and warm up there and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. I came back with a nice tan.

The next morning we continued our journey north and pulled off when we saw a sign for a waterfall. It was a pretty short hike down to the falls and it was worth it – except for the dead sheep that was near the water that made it smell pretty nasty. We continued our drive and eventually made it to Cape Reigna – northern most point of the North Island. The way up was kind of like driving through the middle of nowhere because there was one little general store on the way up. It was worth the drive in the end. There was a trail down to a light house and around the Cape where you could read little interesting facts about it: where the Tasman and Pacific meet, Abel Tasman being the first European to NZ, and the significance of the Cape to the Maori people (where their souls go after they’ve passed away).

A trail led down from the main path down to a bay where the waves crashed. It was pretty cool. Supposedly, whales swim in near the rocks to scratch the barnacles off their backs but we weren’t lucky enough to see a whale. It wasn’t a bad walk down to the bay because it was all downhill, but the walk back uphill wasn’t very fun. Spent Sunday driving back south to Auckland. It took about 5 hours to drive from Cape Reigna back to Birkdale. My favorite part of the weekend was Goat Island…can’t wait to go again in May for my marine science class. I’m really enjoying that class!

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