Rotorua

Day 16, Saturday 22nd 2003f November 2003

Today we drive to the hot and steamy heart of New Zealand, Rotorua. It's know for it's many geothermal hotspots with spouting geysers, bubbling and belching acrid-smelling mud pools, and warm geothermal pools and ponds. Rotorua is also the main centre for Maori cultural experiences. There us so much to see and do in and around here, that we'll have a hard time choosing ... We'll be staying at the unique lakefront retreat, the Swiss Lodge, hosted by Heiko and Christina.

Journal

Taupo - Huka Falls

Skipped breakfast at the Chateau, checked out and headed for Rotorua.
Stopped shortly at a mountainboarding event in Taupo. Next we went to the Huka Falls, a 'horizontal' falls (yes, we know,..., take our word for it).

Wai-o-tapu

Then visited Wai-o-tapu thermal park, before arranging a Maori cultural experience for the evening at Rotorua's tourist office. The weather was pretty grey again, making the otherwise colourful thermal pools look bleak and less spectacular. Had some trouble finding the Swiss Lodge, got there finally, very nice people, and a very beautiful location at the lake!

Maori Cultural Experience

Pick-up for Maori Cultural Experience (pre-European village, traditional dance and song + hangi meal), man in souvenir shop with woodcarvings was most fascinating to listen to, Would have preferred to listen to him all night instead of going through the motion of this very well organised, but extremely commercialised set-up.
R also had to sing a Flemish song before being allowed of the bus ("Ik hou van u", Noordkaap).

Accomodation

The Swiss Lodge

207 - 209 Kawaha Point Road,
PO Box 1600
Rotorua - (North Island) NZ


http://www.swisslodge.net.nz/

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