Friday, March 09, 2007

exploring the north island 1: whanganui to raglan

In February we had 2 blissful sunshine-filled weeks off, during which we explored some of the north island. I don't agree with people who think the north island is inferior to the south - it has sooo many beautiful areas and gets great weather so there. We started off driving on a dirt road alongside the beautiful Wanganui river (quite isolated, perfect for an impromptu swim) and then up to the Waitomo caves, a labyrinth of underground caves (as opposed to the overground type) with glowworms. As can be seen from the photo, it involved getting into wetsuits and floating on underground rivers sitting in rubber tubes. All sounds very peaceful, but i did have a moment where i felt very claustrophobic and found the prospect of jumping backwards off a 2 metre high underground waterfall into the river clearly ludicrous.

Next stop after Waitomo was Raglan, a lovely laid-back surfy town with nice coffee shops, beautiful beaches, and the biggest attractions of all: The Churns! It was fab staying with Pete, (fellow GP) Lucy and Ben in their airy stylish house, being wined and dined and introduced to the joys of parenthood. You can see gorgeous Ben having a deep and meaningful with Ash in the photo.


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