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New Zealand Round the World 2007

Taupo to Waitomo

We checked out, but weren’t planning to leave Taupo until 3pm. Rainbow Lodge lets you stay all day after you’ve checked out though. Kris and I played Scrabble, which I lost badly, but didn’t have a terrible score. Then we went to Taupo’s mini golf, and both did better than yesterday. I even got two hole-in-ones! Kris had another go at the golf game on the lake.

We went back to the hostel and had another game of Trivial Pursuit (lost badly), had lunch, and I finally got round to writing in my diary for the first time in days!

We left Taupo at 3pm and headed for Waitomo. Played “eye spy” and went through some scary hailstones. We checked into Juno Hall Backpackers, which has a bit of “school field trip” feel to it. The four of us walked into “town” – Kris saw half a dead cat – and got some supplies. Freddy and Inga walked back while it was still light, and Kris and I went for a beer in the tavern. Walked back in the dark, then I spent the evening reading Harry Potter.

New Zealand Round the World 2007

Rotorua to Taupo

Checked out and went back to Te Whaka for the cultural performance. It was quite interesting having half-dressed Maoris stamping and dancing, and making weird faces at us. Anyway, that finished around noon and we got on the road to Taupo. We stopped at the Wai-O-Tapu thermal reserve on the way. We wandered around looking at the thermal activity. Most of it wasn’t that exciting to look at, but the whole idea of the thermal activity and Champagne Pool were good.

Back on the road to Taupo, and we stopped at the Huka Falls before getting into town. I’m still awed by the sheer volume of water gushing over the falls: two swimming pools per second. Once in town we went to Rainbow Lodge and dropped our stuff off, then wandered into town.

Kris had a couple of tries at a golf game on the lake, then we went to Breakers for some food and a few games of pool. Then we went to the Irish bar next door for a couple, then back to the lodge. We watched Donnie Brasco and I finally got started on Harry Potter 7 – which Freddy gave to me – before bed.