Sailing Yacht SEA BUNNY


The top of NZ 

Whangarei - Buying a car

Bay of Islands- November to December 2002
Whangarie Falls

One of the first things we did on arrival in NZ was to hire a car and drive to the car auction in Whangerei, buying a car, We visit 5 separate ATMs to get the cash together!

Driving down from Opua we note how the scenery looks like England, almost like it has been landscaped.

The trip back is via Whangarei Falls, set in a pleasant park


 Whangaroa Harbour

To try out the car we head north towards Cape Reinga at the very north of North Island. and have a mini-tour of Northland. The first stop is a Whangaroa, which has an enclosed harbour...

Wise advice

...and some wise advice.

Ninety Mile Beach

Ninety mile beach

Ninety Mile Beach, at 90 km long somewhat shorter than its name implies, stretches from Ahipara Bay in the south up to Cape Maria Van Dieman in the north.  Given the right tides and a 4 WD for the softer patches it is possible to drive its length. Apparently it is not uncommon for cars to start but not to finish. In our new, to us, car we opted just to drive onto the beach at one of the access points along the way

Cape Reinga

Cape Reiga

Cape Reinga is not the northernmost point in New Zealand - that honour goes to North Cape, which is about 1 mile further north.  However the main road SH1, unsealed for the last 20 km, goes to Cape Reinga with only a track going out to the North Cape area.

In Maori legend spirits leave this world from the rocks off Cape Reinga.  Accordingly there are "tapu" areas that one is asked not to enter, not that this deterred several visitors.

Ca[e Reinga LH Pacific meets Rasman
Cape Maria van Dieman

Cape Maria van Dieman is a short dustance south of Cape Reinga and marks the end of Ninety Mile Beach. We were told that the sand came from the massive volcanic explosion that created Lake Taupo around 25000 years ago

Awanui - Gumdiggers Park

Gumdiggers Park

Around the start of the 20th century there was a major industry in Northland involved in digging fossilised kauri gum out of the ground.  It was exported for use in floor varnish.  Conditions for the diggers were primitive.

Although the logging of kauri (agathis australis) trees is now banned, the forests having been nearly destroyed, it is still possible to obtain the wood.  This is wood that fell around 50000 or more years ago and got buried and preserved in swamp.  The trunks are dug up and the wood is still workable

Tane Mahuta (Lord of the Forest)

Lord of the Forest

There are still some kauris left - they are protected.  This is supposed to be the largest - the "Lord of the Forest".  As usual it is difficult to do photographic justice to the size of a tree. 

 Dimensions are:
Trunk Girth 13.77 m
Trunk Height 17.68 m
Total Height 51.2 m
Trunk Volume 244.5 m3


Hokianga harbour

Hokianga has one of the few harbours on the west coast of North Island.  Unfortunately it has a shallow entrance facing the prevailing weather from the Tasman Sea, with a fetch of over 1000 miles from Australia and much more from Antartica, which can cause it to be closed for weeks on end. Once in a boat may be stuck there for a while! We were there at a fairly calm time

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Last updated from Nongsa Point Marina, Batam, Indonesia on 21 November 2013

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