This blogpost will be a little shorter, as we have been lazy bastards the last week. As you might remember, we were planning on working a week on the North Island as apple pickers. However, as we arrived in Havelock North –the apple picking capital of NZ– we met with our British friends, who had been working in an apple orchard for a while. They strongly advised us against apple picking. Their depressed faces, hurting backs and horror stories of picking 1.500Kg of apples a day (for minimum wage) immediately persuaded us to give up on the idea. Should we have worked, we probably would have spent all our earnings on alcohol and other pain relievers anyway.
No work, all play it is :) We stayed in Havelock North for 2 nights and had a fun time visiting the local farmers market, the cheese factory and the educational and interesting Arataki Honey Company. Boy, do they make great honey! And apparently New Zealanders are the biggest consumers of honey. We can absolutely believe why! We left our British friends, who were picking apples in the rain to go to sunny Taupo. They would rejoin us as soon as they could run away from their jobs.
While enjoying a nice walk in lovely Taupo, we saw the amazing Huka Falls. They were more like strong rapids than real falls, but deadly to rafters nonetheless.
The walk also proved to be a goldmine of discoveries: we saw a great campsite by the river shore, that even turned out to be free. FREE!? And a natural hot stream of water that joined the cold river to make a wonderful free (again!?) hot pool of water (aka a hot spa).
By Tuesday our English friends joined us at the campsite and we had an evening BBQ. As the campsite did not come with showers, we took our morning bath in the free natural hot pool of water. Muhahaha. Living of nature rocks! The next two days we had a great holiday, doing absolutely nothing but soaking up the sunshine, enjoying a cold beer –well, not that cold– and cooking more delicious food on the barbie.
After three days of showerlessness and extremely smelly longdrop toilets, we had to get to a proper –paid– campsite. So we fed the ducks on departure, said our goodbyes to the Britz and head off to Rotorua.
The showers were more than welcome. However, Rotorua, being the smelly capital of NZ (because of its muddy geothermal activity), did not help us achieve full body freshness. Luckily, it’s just the two of us and we’re used to each others “fragrance” :)
To overcome our laziness, we took a walk in Redwood forest. A beautiful forest with huge californian redwood sequoias. Afterwards we got us some well deserved sushi. We love Sushi. We love Sushi!
We are now into our last three weeks, and we already booked the last few days in Auckland with Owen & Anna in a deluxe two bedroom apartement. Oooh fancy pantsy, isn’t it? Until then we are spending two weeks in Northland. Famous for its beaches and wildlife. Although we regret having to leave soon and are still enjoying these lovely days, we are definitely looking forward to returning home, to Belgium. And season hopping from fall to spring is a great bonus, of course!