All about lush green meadows, ocean, hills. Time well spent in New Zealand- Northern Island

raman mittal

Raman Mittal
Hot Water Beach

Hot Water beach is another attraction of The Coromandel Area and our 2nd destination of the day before moving back to Tauranga. this is a amazing phenomena, one can witness cold Ocean water flowing with cold winds and can dig up beach for 1-2 feet to get the hot water and enjoy the views and sauna at same time.

Hot water beach is approx. 10KMs from the Cathedral Cove and took us ~ 15mins to reach there. I did not take many pictures as we ventured into digging the pool for our hot water bath. Akshaj enjoyed a lot and did not want to come back :D, we literally dragged him out of the beach area.

Below are few shots from Hot Water Beach :

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Next will be our trip to Taupo and Wellington.
 

raman mittal

Raman Mittal
Day 7 Taupo

We got late yesterday at Hot Water Beach, hence reached late to our adobe in Tauranga. But before that my brother told us that we need to pack our bags for 5 days, as we will be going on 5 days trip Taupo and wellington, also we gonna visit Mount Ruapehu which is the largest active volcano in New Zealand.

So next day which was our 7th day in New Zealand, we started our day bit late as our last ended very late. Hence kids and adults woke up late. Me and my brother stuffed our car with luggage and snacks and started around 12PM for Taupo our stop of the day.

Taupo is a town on the north-eastern shore of Lake Taupo in the central North Island of New Zealand. The City is located on the northeastern shore of Lake Taupo, which is largest lake by surface area in New Zealand. Lake Taupo is in a caldera created by a super volcanic eruption of Volcano Taupo. This town has a lot of tourist attractions one is the lake itself and Huka Falls, tourists also venture into Adventure sports like Bungee jumping, sky diving etc.

Let me take you through our journey from Tauranga to Taupo, which was very scenic and I was in love with New Zealand roads, hence have taken a lot of pictures while on the run. feast your eyes with on road beauty of New Zealand:

Icing on the cake was the weather, which was cold but still enjoyable :p

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Our first stop of the day was Huka Falls. The Huka Falls are a set of waterfalls on the Waikato River that drains Lake Taupo in New Zealand. The volume of water flowing through often approaches 220,000 litres per second.

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A few hundred metres upstream from the Huka Falls, the Waikato River narrows from approximately 100 metres across into a canyon only 15 metres across.

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Tourists also enjoy the Jet boat rides in River Waikato tillHuka Falls and also can take a chopper ride to enjoy the bird eye view of huka falls.

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After a 5 min drive from Huka falls , we visited a view point (kind of a high point) from where we were able to see the Taupo Lake and Taupo city. It was an open space and kids enjoyed alot by running here and there. We were getting late as we had not booked our stay as this is the tourist off season, but as we reached there on Saturday and found out that all hotels are full. Luckily we got two rooms in a motel at higher prices and settled down.
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After taking rest, its the time to fill our stomachs and roam around Taupo city to enjoy night life of the city. to our surprise, apart from the lake area, rest of the city was very quite.
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Next will be our visit to One of the active Volcano in New Zealand. Till then please feed in your comments.
 

raman mittal

Raman Mittal
Day8:- Taupo to Mt Ruapehu and Wellington

On our 8th, our plan was to travel from Taupo to Wellington which is approx. 400 KMs. Hence we started early from Taupo and I miss the opportunity to click Lake Taupo because of morning Haze. But our first few kilometers gonna be around Lake Taupo as the road leading to Wellington will run along Lake Taupo for few KMs. After a drive of 30-40 mins, we find a nice place to click some photographs with Lake Taupo in background.
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There are a lot of camping grounds available for rent, where you can park your campervans and stay at a shore of Lake Taupo. One can be seen in above photo as well.

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A wide angle of Lake Taupo.

Our next destination of the day is Mt Ruapehu, is an active stratovolcano at the southern end of the Taupo Volcanic Zone in New Zealand. It is 23 kilometers southwest of the southern shore of Lake Taupo, within Tongariro National Park and around 100KMs from Taupo city. Mt Ruapehu has the largest skiing area of North New Zealand and his the highest point in North Island.

As usual the roads were beautiful and scenic. But as we need to cover a long distance today along with required stoppages in between. Hence I clicked most of photos through running car only. Please feast your eyes with road beauty:

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Valley view enroute to Mount Ruapehu.

The road from Taupo to Mount Ruapehu is part of Volcanic Loop Highway, which starts from Taupo covering state highway 47 - part of State Highway 4 and state highway 1 or or Desert Road.

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We covered only first 2 legs of the Volcanic Loop highway as our destination for the night halt was Wellington. A portion of State highway 47 goes through Desert Area, where we saw either if Mount Tongariro or Mt Ngauruhoe on out left as we cruised along state highway 47. As I said earlier all shots were taken thru a running car. please bear the quality:

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After running for few more kilometers, we saw the mighty Mount Ruapehu on our left for the first time. Though the top of the mighty Mount Ruapehu was covered by clouds, so Sahil was ascertain that we will not be allowed to go on top because of bad weather conditions. But it will be worth to visit the Whakapapa village to check the status before making a final call.

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First View of Mount Ruapehu.

As we moved further, rain started and followed us for few kilometers and when the rain stopped, it enlightened us with a nice full Rainbow. This time we have to stop our car to click some Rainbow photos. Here are few :

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After spending about 10 mins there, we moved towards Mount Ruapehu. As we moved further Mt Ruapehu starting showing its real beauty.
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Whakapapa is the check post village for Mount Ruapehu. Check post guys may stop you going further, if the weather is harsh at the top. But when we reached there, it has already snowed at the top, but still we were stopped:cop: to check if our car has a 4 wheel drive option or snow chains for tyres. we had neither of these options. Check post stopped us stating that there is black snow on road hence we can not move further. Either we have to leave without visiting Mount Ruapehu or need to take council bus to the top and we choose neither of these options :p.

We asked them where we can buy the snow chains, as the bus will move once it has full capacity of passengers and we don't want to wait, they guided us to a fuel station which is around 20 KMs from the check post. We went there and bought new chains and came back to the post. this time the guy at the check post helped us to tie snow chains on our rear tyres and charged nothing from us. Once ready, we started our ascend to the top and as expected we encountered the breathtaking views:

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We enjoyed for about 2 hours at the top and has to leave because it started snowing and were asked to leave asap. Few clicks from the top:

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As soon as we reached at the top, Akshaj got mad after snow (this was his first time in snow) and started playing with snow. But soon he realized the coldness on hands and body than we covered his hands and head so that he can enjoy with snow. Same can be seen in the photo above.
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Soon he was joined with his mum as well and I was on duty to click the duo into frame :D

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My brother and our host in New Zealand and his son Haryansh Mittal.

There was Gondala work to the top of Mt Ruapehu was going on and testing was being carried out, when we reached there. they were planning to open for 2019 tourist season, which will begin in September.
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Mt Ruapehu Skiing area.
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Akshaj's first snow fall.

Thanks a lot for reading till this point. I will cover out journey to Wellington from Whakapapa in my next part. Till than please feed in your comments.
 

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raman mittal

Raman Mittal
Our Journey from Mt Ruapehu to Wellington was event less, as it black clouds followed us and we were already running late to reach Wellington. We have still ~ 350 KMs to travel. Hence we thought to take less breaks as it will be dark soon and we have to search for our motel, which Sahil has already booked from Tauranga. As usual, I clicked few pics of Roads and their scenic beauty:
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We followed the State Highway 4 - SH 49 and finally to SH1. SH1 connects Auckland to Wellington covering most major cities such as Hamilton, Taupo etc. We stopped at SH49 and SH1 interaction at Waiouru, which is a miltary camp area and houses the National Army/ Queen Elizabeth II Army Memorial Museum. They have showcase the Tanks, Guns etc. in the outer courtyard, which triggered a must be STOP to show these army weapons to our kids.

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This Horse statue was installed in memory of War Animals.=D>

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This was the end of the day, as it got dark after this and we reached Wellington around 8PM. completed the required check-in formalities at Motel and settled for the day.

Next few days will be in Wellington and than return to Tauranga by Northern Explorer Train those 3 days I will cover in single story. Till than Sayonara.
 
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