Sunday, October 10, 2010

Holiday Up North - Part 1

We never went camping as kids so I think my parents are somewhat puzzled by our sudden enthusiasm for sleeping under canvas or in a metal box on wheels with a built in toilet. They are not into the outdoor life after the sun goes down or sleeping a good 500 yard dash in the cold from the nearest shared toilet facilities. To be honest I can understand where they are coming from but here in New Zealand camping seems to be an annual event for most families I have met. K-Mart becomes full of sleeping bags and collapsible picnic tables at this time of year and Warehouse is now full of camping stoves and those totally useless half an inch thick sleeping mats.

So this year we decided to go camping in the half term and explore some of this small but vastly varied country. We initially wanted to head down south and explore Queenstown but luckily (as it had heavy snow just before we were due to leave) we thought we would head up north were we hoped it would be a lot warmer at this time of year.

We flew from Wellington to Auckland and picked up our camper van from there. After a rather terrifying few minutes on State Highway 1 we managed to find our first camp site in Takapuna.

This was the amazing view from our camper van in the morning. The sun rising over Rangitoto volcano.

Our fantastic camper van parked right next to the beach.

We took the ferry from Devonport to the centre of town which is a great way to see the city and harbour.

We met the penguins at Kelly Tarltons which is this amazing underground sealife centre. You really get to see the penguins close up but I can't help feeling sorry for the animals themselves who don't appear to get to see daylight at all.

Walking underneath the sharks.

These fish appeared to really like A and swarmed around her.

J at the top of the Sky Tower and looking towards Rangitoto Volcano in the distance. Auckland is an amazingly beautiful and potentially very dangerous city.

As we were sitting having a coffee near the top of the Tower a woman suddenly dropped down and was hanging outside the window waving at us. A few seconds later she had dropped again and disappeared. Some strange people like to jump of the top of the tower attached to ropes. They seemed to be doing it every few minutes so clearly there are a lot of mad people out there. As you can tell this doesn't appeal to me at all.

A view towards one tree hill from the Sky Tower.

1 comment:

  1. Great photos and fantastic view from the tower, J seems to have no fear of heights.Nice van but I would prefer it without the word 'Britz'