Taupo, North Island, New Zealand: By now we’ve learned New Zealand is known for its geologic diversity. Craters of the moon is an area just outside Lake Taupo where there’s a ton of geothermal activity. Walking through it was interesting because some of the mud pools, steam vents and eruption craters that we saw on this day didn’t exist a week ago and may move to another part of the park in another week’s time. The shifting landscape was fascinating & haunting.
Auckland, New Zealand: 8,205 km. 26 days. 7 national parks. 2 wooly hats. 1 Happy Camper. Our time in this stunning country has come to an end. New Zealand, we love you even when it rains!
Hot Water Beach, Coromandel Peninsula, North Island, New Zealand: This place was unbelievable. Under the sand beach lies a hot water spring, which is accessible for 2 hours either side of low tide. The water reaches temperatures of 67 degrees Celsius, and people hunt & peck for the perfect spot to lie in the toasty water. We rented a spade from the local surf shop, made our way to the beach, dug the perfect hole (not too hot, not too cold) and chilled in our personal hot spring for 3 hours.
Mt Maunganui, North Island, New Zealand: We loved this spot! After 20+ days of searching for sun and warmth, we finally found it in Mt Maunganui. Our campsite was nestled in between an extinct volcanic cone and the ocean, and each morning’s alarm clock was a concert of baaaahing sheep, whipping wind and crashing waves. Needless to say, we were really excited about this spot so we stayed 3 days. Each day, we hiked the mountain and cooled off in the Pacific. It was the perfect spot to slow down, take in some sun and enjoy our last few days in this beautiful country.