Lupton Lodge Tucked Away in Whangarei

So we had been in New Zealand a few hours, and we had a 3-hour drive north to Whangarei.  So Lupton Lodge has been around for many years but has only in recent time been under the careful watch of fellow Brit Andy.

Middle Earth at the Hobbiton Village

Omg, omg, oh my freaking god! Excuse the excitable fangirl in me but seriously I could not have been more excited to visit Hobbiton Movie Set. I am in New Zealand, of course, I'm going, there was no doubt in that.

The Magnificent Ruakuri Caves in Otorohanga

The Ruakuri Caves was the second stop on our first tour with gray line tours. The only thing we knew about this place was that there was a good chance that we could see real life glow worms. Eeeeek!

Otorohanga Kiwi House

The Otorohanga Kiwi House was our last stop on our first Grayline Tour, this rather demure looking building had inside of it two kiwi houses. These houses housed four kiwi birds in two different buildings and four separate enclosures; they were all separate because they are apparently incredibly territorial.

The Fox and their own Brew

The Fox down in the CBD of Auckland is an excellent place to get great food and sample some of the homebrew. Close to...

Category: New Zealand

The Blue and Green Lake just Outside Rotorua

Well, we spent a few days in the beautiful but very smelly town of Rotorua.  The smell, well that's due to the many, many sulphur springs throughout the town.  Even down to steam coming out of roadside drainpipes! Yep, it's a smelly tourist town.

Our Little Visit To The Piha Cafe

This cute, quirky café is about five minutes from Piha beach on the west coast of New Zealand. It's located on the steep slant of a hill, but it has ample parking even though it was busy.

Our Second Grayline Tour in New Zealand

Overall review of our second full day tour with Greyline Tours. We were picked up from the centre of Auckland; this tour was also one of those multi-stop tours. We had three destinations we were going to visit today on the north island of New Zealand.

The Very Hidden Gem That Is The Food Truck

We went to the City Works Depot, on 90 Wellesley St West. This restaurant is placed in the heart of Auckland’s CBD, its surrounded by lots of parking and is near key transport lines into the city. Defiantly a great location for both city dwellers and travellers coming into the city.

Not Much Gusto At Gusto Italiano In Auckland

Gusto Italiano has a wide variety of authentic Italian food to appease your taste. Located on the Ponsonby Road in Auckland, Gusto Italiano has a lot of competition for your money. Even opposite you have a gelato ice cream place, oh heaven.

The Very Dissapointing Hangi Meal We Ate At Kiwi Kai in Rotorua

So it was our final day in Rotorua, and we headed to Kiwi Kai for a nice Hangi lunch.  Kiwi Kai is situated right next to the main shopping centre, and with parking, just opposite was a really good location.

The Nomad Restaurant in Auckland

The Nomad restaurant is located in Point Chevalier in Auckland, situated in a busy district of local shops. The parking was limited, but I am sure there would be local transport links around.

Some Authentic Latin American Food at Besos Latinos, Auckland

Besos Latinos translates to many kisses. Este lugar es increíble (or, this place is incredible)!! Somewhere you could walk past every day for your whole life and not know it was there.  Tucked away deep within Elliot Stables is this fantastic Caribbean, South American, Mexican restaurant.

The Day At Auckland Zoo in New Zealand

I have been to many Zoos in my time. So coming to Auckland Zoo in New Zealand was something I was looking forward to.

The Very Trendy Burger Fuel Restaurant

BurgerFuel is a company with a chain of restaurants that quite honestly I had not heard of until going to New Zealand. It was the first experience for me even though they have a few across the pond in Australia and a few in other countries too. BurgerFuel is a gourmet burger chain restaurant

A Tour Along The West Coast with Unique Visions Tours

Brett picked us up from our accommodation, and we headed off on our west coast tour of Auckland’s North Island. We were the only ones on the tour but that was no problem for him, he is more than happy to mix things up and tailor the tours an individual need, wants and desires. Below are the places we went and the experiences we had there.

A Night at the Mini Golf NZ

Who does not love a good game of mini golf? We had seen the Mini Gold NZ place a few times while driving through Rotorua.

The Lion Feeding at Paradise Valley Springs

The weather wasn't exactly the best it could've been, but we braved the cold wind and the spotty rain for a chance to see the animals at Paradise Valley Springs. As we arrived, we entered the park and picked up some food for the animals, we turned left and followed the path along.

An Unforgettable Abracadabra Cafe Dinner

So we just had enough time to get back to our accommodation and have a shower before we were off and back for our evening meal. It certainly didn’t disappoint. The atmosphere was incredible! Nothing like it was just a few hours earlier.

An Outstanding Abracadabra Cafe Lunch

Abracadabra in Rotorua.  What a deceivingly spacious place this is.  I should have known with the name; it gives it a magical charm. 

Whose Had a Fright at the Skyline Gondola Ride

We didn't know what to expect from the skyline experience; we have been on a gondola ride before on the hills in southern Spain, and it was an excellent chance to take some great photos.

The Tamaki Maori Village Experience in Rotorua

You cannot visit New Zealand and not take in some of the cultures of the Maori people. So the opportunity came to visit the Tamaki Maori Village down in Rotorua.

The Tranquile Polynesian Spa in Rotorua

Well, we had been travelling pretty much non-stop for the past five weeks.  Whether this is the 5,000km around Australia or the near 1,500km clocked up in the first few days in New Zealand.

Victoria Lodge and our Thermal Hot Spa in Rotorua

Oh, what a sweet delight Victoria Lodge was after our Mammoth driving sessions further north up the island. As we checked in we got chatting about the local attractions and what was on offer in this small but beautifully varied town

Degree Restaurant and Bar Down At The Auckland Viaduct

So we were in Auckland for a few days and had already eaten at The Fox. But just around the corner, we had noticed Degree Restaurant and Bar. Situated just off the viaduct, the Degree Restaurant and Bar goes for a Miami feel. With plenty of plants and a decor not too dissimilar to some of the Miami bars along Ocean Drive.

Our Day and Night Habitat Tour

So there are a few different tours that the Habitat Tour company run. We chose to do their Tawharanui Regional Park in the day/night tour. We love walking through natural trust places, local forests, and pretty much any natural beauty sights, so this tour was one for us.

The World Famous Pohutu Geyser at Te Puia

So our final stop on our first Grayline Tour while in New Zealand was Te Puia. Te Puia has the famous geyser Pohutu.  But before we...

Grayline Hobbiton, Caves, and Kiwi Tour

Well, it was an early start to say at least, we had to be at the bus stop for 6:45 am and even though...

Sheep Shearing at the Agrodome in Rotorua

So the Agrodome was stop number two on our second Grayline tour.  So after our Waitomo Cave experience, we headed down to the smelly town of Rotorua, and the Agrodome farm.