Tree Hugging Maori Style
07.01.2014 - 08.01.2014 30 °C
Apihra - Waipoua Ancient Forest - Orewa (375km/233)
Knowing we had a five drive ahead of us we were up early as we were taking a slightly longer route to avoid a $20 ferry crossing and to take in an ancient Kauri forest with yet more amazing lookouts along the way.
Two hours into our journey and along some very winding roads (some with maximum speeds of 15km/h), we arrived at the Waipoua carpark. Seconds from the road we walked along the boardwalk to see Tane Mahuta, the oldest Kauri Tree in New Zealand with a trunk diameter of 4.4 metres and girth of 15 metres.
Just a 1km down the highway and we stopped again to see the Four Sisters, four Kauri trees which have joined together at the base, this was ok and in a nice woodland but not as spectacular as we expected.
Down some more winding roads and due to the very bad Kiwi drivers a lot of it was done in SECOND gear! We finally got to Orewa at 17:00 and checked into Orewa Backpackers, a small hostel on the outskirts of town with a slightly strange owner and a regular guest “who does not need to travel abroad but simply move from hostel to hostel around New Zealand meeting foreigners - it’s just the same - really?!?”.
Even though the sun was setting we decided we would make the most of being near the beach and donned our swimwear for freezing cold dip in the sea.
The next morning and after little sleep due to multiple loud snorers we were back on the road heading towards the Coromandel Peninsular.