Geothermal Wonders and Expensive Island Paradise
Otaki Travel Blog› entry 7 of 15 › view all entries
May 11th, 2007 – by: viviane_broceliande
For those follwing, after naked man in a hot pool I spent the next day having geothermal fun. First I went to Wai-au-Tapu (probably wrong spelling) and its kind of like hell on hearth. Bubbling mud pools, huge lime green pools that looked like toxic waste but were naturally occuring sulphur and other mineral lakes. Big long boardwalks through more bubbling orange, green and yellow, spitting and steaming pools. Super cool. Also a big geyser erupting (like old yeller) and really nice views of a mars like landscape. Crazy colours, wonderful sulphur smell, ha ha. And I met a nice canadian girl who I hung around with later that day.
After Wai-au-Tapu I went to Waimanga, which is the worlds youngest geothermal ecosystem. A volcanic valley created a little over 100 years ago, its surrounded by huge hills created by lava flows, covered in thick tropical foliage and most of them, emitting steam from between the trees.
Im staying in otaki now with Deirdre Kent (retired hobby gardner) and her husband Malcom. A beautiful farm, a lovely couple and wonderful dinner to start. Not to mention my own room filled with really interesting books (including "The Prophet" which makes me very happy).
Now, I am in Parapaumu... (or some word close to that) at an internet cafe. Deidres Net went down so I wont be able check my emails for the next little bit. On wednesday I am going to Lavender Creek Farm in the same area for a week, so play with essential oils and have a relaxed time in a nice little area. I went to Kapiti Island for a day trip today. I saw a kaka, weka, NZ Pipit and a brown skink. The kaka came so close I could have grabbed it (I got great pictures!). Kapiti island was $9 for a permit, $45 for the ferry ride over and its going to be a $20 bus ride back (despite the fact that it is a 15 minute bus trip, literally). For all that money,( it was a coupleof nice veiws, birds....etc), my feeling is that after a week on tiri-tiri I should have skipped it. Lovely, it really was, but I am getting bored with NZ wildlife. There, I said it! The forests here are actually a little odd in the sense that there are no deer, no fox, bear, moose, or even a bloody chipmunk! Bring on the cheeky little buggers! Just birds where they have gotten rid of the rodents, and just rodents where they've eaten the birds. Canada has spoiled me. I want to play with a toad! Ontario must be crawling with the things. Give me a toad that is not endangered and on some tiny expensive island that allows limited numbers of people only. Let me grab it with my hands! This is what conservation should be about "Canada, watch out, or you'll end up like new zealand". We are halfway there now. The "wildlife" here is sort of boxed up and marketed to the hilt, and its necessary of course to conserve the area, but I miss wide open spaces and little nooks of the world that nobody knows about but you.
Honestly, Ive only been here a month so I should tough it out and stop being so spoiled... but I miss the natural mammals in Canada. So I will be getting to the South island some time early in June so I can settle for spectacular scenery, LOTR geekdom, and penguins. I cant get enough of penguins. Or LOTR geekdom which I feel I should break out any time now. Probably in Wellington. :)
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