Helen and Randall on the road

A bit about our adventures 2011-2012

Monday 3rd – Thursday 6th October: Bay of Islands

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After a Scotland-like drive through torrential rain on gorse-lined winding roads we arrived in Paihia on Sunday evening only to discover that the camp site we had picked from the Lonely Planet didn’t actually have camper van sites any more…boo! Still, they recommended one just up the road where we parked up  amongst the olive trees in a slightly soggy small camp site, paid up for one night, then raced back into town to find somewhere to catch the second half of Wales – Fiji (result!).

When we woke up it was still raining, and we decided our little campsite was rather too basic for a day destined to be spent indoors so we threw our stuff in the back and drove straight to the Beachside Holiday Park

Actually it didn’t look like this when we arrived as on Monday it rained all day, but we did have this great spot looking over the bay (until someone parked their enormous Winnebago in front of us!) and they had great facilities including free  internet and a TV room with a proper desk, so Randall spent the day working on some contract work we picked up (shame to be working on our holidays but the extra pennies count!).

Tuesday was a glorious day:

So after a breakfast of real coffee, fresh orange juice, raisin toast, muesli and smoked salmon with scrambled eggs:

we put on our boots and hiked around the coastal path to Paihia, although as it was high tide we had to come inland for part of the way instead of walking along the beach.

Even so, the walk was beautiful, with views out to the bay (and its Islands!) on one side and flowers on the other side:

Gorgeous winter jasmine. And Randall.

In Paihia we hopped on the ferry to Russell across the bay:

Randall with his ears flapping in the wind.


Bay of Islands from Russell Flagstaff hill

Crazy house with mad roof and interesting gateposts.

We did a couple of short walks around the town, including up to Flagstaff Hill and the nearby mosaic-ed sundial:

and down to Long Beach:

Randall gets drenched playing

in the rock pools!

Where we ate our sandwiches (yes, of COURSE I’d made a packed lunch) and admired the flora and fauna:

Calla lilies growing wild

before catching the ferry back to Paihia and thence home, where the campsite had been invaded by the French, so our nice quiet kitchen area was packed with parents cooking for their attendant sulky children. I *was* however impressed by frog père actually flambé-ing  bananas for pud. Très bien.


Written by helenbcn

October 6, 2011 at 5:15 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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