Place 60 – Day 5: Rotorua – Mountain Lunch, Impromptu Luge-Ing & Blue Lake

We had to be up at a pretty good time so we could get to the gondola for 12:30.

We met some friends of Kim’s parents there as they had booked a lunch in the restaurant at the top of the mountain.

Once we all arrived, we went on the cable car to the top and entered the restaurant. The food was a big buffet, with multiple areas including salads, curries, roast meat and vegetables and dessert.

We sat and chatted for a long while whilst ensuring we ate as much as we could!

Once we left the restaurant we eventually decided we wanted to do a quick luge run, so we did so. It was great fun and us two had a great battle in which Curtis came out on top .

We left there and drove to blue lake. Unsurprisingly by the name, this is a lake of which is blue. We walked in the water a little and then sat and chatted for a while in the very warm heat!

We said goodbye and drove back home. We were so warm, but we went to the supermarket just to get suncream as we were running out.

We chilled for the evening and had bacon, eggs, beans and toast for dinner.

Pretty early start tomorrow, with a very fun and scary day!

This time last year!

Poroporoaki!

– Mr & Mrs Hale

Place 63 – Day 1: Queenstown 🇳🇿 – Car Pickup, Arrowtown & Luge!

We were up nice and early at 05:30 to get showered and ready to fly!

We booked an Uber and got to the airport with about 2 hours to spare. We went to check our bags but realised they were too heavy, so had to re-jig them to ensure they were of an acceptable weight.

We checked our bags and went to McDonald’s for a spot of breakfast and a coffee.

We breezed through security, waited briefly and went onto the plane! The flight was nice and easy, we listened to some music and before we knew it, we were there.

Queenstown is very mountainous, which is the first thing we noticed.

We all collected our bags and walked outside to the transfers area where we were to wait for our free shuttle to our car rental company. We had to wait for 45 minutes for the shuttle, but eventually got there.

The car was very dirty, but to be fair to them, they are currently working on a construction site! We have the car for a couple of weeks.

After picking up the car, we drove to Arrowtown for a look around and for some lunch. Our airbnb host was kind enough to recommend a nice pub to go to, so one we walked around, we went there for lunch. Curtis had fish and chips whilst Kim had a chicken wrap.

We walk around a bit more after lunch and then just before driving to our airbnb, we had a brief walk around the old chinese settlement.

We drove to the airbnb and met our host who was lovely! We are in our own apartment out in the back garden of the house and it is perfect! Exactly what we were looking for!

We relaxed a bit and then drove down to Queenstown’s Centre to see what all the fuss is about.

We found a parking spot and went for a wander. We sat on the pier and watched some boats and looked at the mountains. It was perfectly relaxing!

Kim got a crepe and then we walked up to the cable car to do the luge!

We got 5 rides each and it wasn’t too busy.

We attempted to race but it didn’t work too well, until the last run which was a really good battle, until Curtis got stuck!

The views were exceptional from the top of the mountain.

Once we finished this, we walked down to the car and stopped at a supermarket for dinner supplies before heading home.

We got back to the apartment and had some salad for dinner with some other things and then pretty much went to bed! We did a bit of admin but got too tired so went to sleep.

More fun things ahead!

This time last year!

Poroporoaki!

– Mr & Mrs Hale

Place 62 – Day 2: Bland Bay 🇳🇿 – Jetskiing & BBQing

We woke up around 09:00, had a coffee and then Kim made some pancakes with bacon.

The sun came out pretty quickly so it quickly became hot!

Some of Josh’s family came up to join us in the festivities in the morning. We all chilled out for a while and then Kim, Daniellle and Josh went out on the donut for a few bumps around!

Later in the afternoon, some of the guys went out to fish.

Whilst they were fishing, we walked with the others across the road to another beach and then around the corner to yet another beach. We did have to go over some rocks to get there, though.

We walked all the way back and got back to the house where we briefly chilled out and then Josh took Danielle and Kim out on the Jetski!

Once they got back, it was almost time for dinner! Josh’s family went home and then Curtis and Josh lit a pretty mean fire whilst the BBQ was being cooked.

We sat around the fire for a few hours before coming inside and having some dessert of chocolate cake, strawberries and some lemon pie.

We all went to bed pretty early…being outside all day does that to you!

This time last year!

Poroporoaki!

– Mr & Mrs Hale

Place 62 – Day 1: Bland Bay 🇳🇿 – Amphibious Boat, Waterskiing & Bonfires

We woke up nice and early this morning to get up to Bland Bay.

We left and stopped at the supermarket, which we arrived to just before it opened for the day.

We got all of our supplies, got some breakfast and headed off.

We got up to the house around 10:45, settled in and then went out on the boat! They have an amphibious boat which has wheels as well as being a boat so you can’t drive it right into the water! We had a great time in this boat as we went to a couple of beaches which we walked around.

We finished up with that and when we got back the sun was scorching so we sat outside for a few hours just catching the sun.

It was then decided that people would try Waterskiing! This didn’t work too well as it was too choppy, but people got a few goes out of it.

Once the boat was back, Josh sent out a contraption which goes out into the water and had a lot of hooks on it and catches fish, using a fishing line.

We all sat around drinking and chatting with all of the surrounding neighbours when a boat drove into the contraption, causing it to get a bit damaged and wrap around the propeller of the boat! People were able to salvage it and there wasn’t much damage. We were even able to get the few fish that had been caught on it!

Shortly after it started to get a little colder, so we went inside and had our dinner which was nachos.

We saw the beautiful sunset go down, too.

After it became dark, we lit a nice mini bonfire and all sat around that eating s’mores, listening to music and having a laugh!

We finished having the fire around 22:10 as everyone was exhausted but it was an action packed and really fun day!

Tomorrow should be just as fun!

This time last year!

Poroporoaki!

– Mr & Mrs Hale

Place 49 – Day 269: Auckland – A Wedding

Today was Danielle & Josh’s Wedding!

We woke up at 09:00 and Kim and went out to get breakfast for us. She went to McDonald’s which was absolutely delicious!

After breakfast, we both got ready for the wedding by showering and Kim did her nails.

We got a lift from Nicola to the wedding. The wedding was at a vineyard. The wedding included free beer and wine, which was great!

We got to the wedding and mingled before we all had to sit for the ceremony.

The ceremony was beautiful and lasted for about 30 minutes.

After the ceremony, there were a lot of photos. We sat and chatted with people as well as having some drinks and having some of the food that was being walked around.

After the photos, we all sat down at our tables for food. There were a lot of different options, which were in a buffet style.

We ate out food and had some more drinks as well as having a dance or two.

Danielle and Josh had their first dance and then everyone just had a great time for the rest of the evening.

We left at 23:15 and got an Uber home where we were incredibly tired and went right to bed.

Be sure to use code MRANDMRSHALE for 10% Off at Capitolawatches.com!

This time last year!

Poroporoaki!

– Mr & Mrs Hale

Place 49 – Day 265: Auckland – Piha Beach (Again) & Sky Tower Dinner

Wee both woke up at 07:30 and Kim went to work. Curtis got up and had breakfast whilst waiting for his family to arrive.

Once his family arrived, Curtis got in the car and they were off for the day.

The plan for today was to go to Piha beach. This is the black beach that we have been to previously, but we wanted to show the family.

Once they got to the beach, it was pretty windy but there wasn’t really anyone there, which made for a good walk.

It was windy enough that the sand was being kicked up from the beach, which had an awesome affect!

They walked around the beach for a while and then went to look at the waves that Curtis knew crashed onto the rocks nearby.

After the beach, they went to the highest cafe in Auckland, which we had been to previously.

Curtis had the Moroccan Lamb Sandwich which was phenomenal!

They left the cafe and drove to Kim’s work to get the keys for Curtis’car from her and then Curtis was dropped off at the car.

Curtis drove home to get some evening clothes and then drove to the rental house.

At 16:20, Curtis drove to the garage that Kim’s car was in to pickup the keys and pay for required repairs. He then got some fuel and drove to pick Kim up from work.

After this, we can home and chilled for a moment before driving down to the sky tower in the city.

We first went to the observation deck from which we got a 360° view of the city.

After here, we went down a level to the cafe and had a drink whilst we waited.

We finished our drinks and went in the lift to the floor above where we were booked to have dinner, on a revolving floor! This allowed us to see the whole city at night which was beautiful.

The food was absolutely divine! For starter, we all shared some Kumara bread and had our own starters also. Curtis had King Prawns and Kim had duck breast.

Shortly after, it was the main! Curtis had venison and Kim had steak.

The venison was excellent and the steak was just OK.

For dessert, Curtis had a coffee cake and Kim had a chocolate orange dessert.

The food was excellent and the company even better!

Curtis’ family leave tomorrow evening, so it’s the last day!

This time last year!

Poroporoaki!

– Mr & Mrs Hale

Place 58 – Day 2: Kaikoura – Whale Watching, Hot Tub & Family Games Night!

We woke up a bit later, at 08:30, and got showered. We had very nice showers here again, which was a win!

Lisa went to the bakery to get some breakfast. This was an assortment of pastries.

From this point, we walked down to the whale watching building. Next to this, there was a black stony beach and a wonderful view of the mountains. We then went inside for our briefing.

After the briefing, we went into a bus to take us to the bay where the boat was.

We were then on the boat for 2.5 hours! We saw a lot of Albatross, including the biggest one in the world, the wandering Albatross. As well as this, we got to see the mountains from the sea, which were stunning.

There were many other birds that we saw, too. We stopped moving a few times so the crew could track the whales’ sonar, which we were unlucky with the first few times.

After a while, they finally heard the sonar of a whale and we raced to where it should be and, sure enough, it was right there, just chilling on the top of the water. We were then told that it was about to dive back down and we got some great photos and videos!

We then made our way back to land and got on the bus back to the whale watching building.

From here, Kim went off with Lisa and the kids to get food whilst Curtis and Gareth went to get the campervan looked at as there were some warning lights appearing.

Kim, the kids and Lisa were unable to find any food and met Curtis and Gareth at the garage before going to Subway for lunch.

After lunch, we went back to the garage and found out that the campervan was all good so didn’t have to worry about that at all. We then went to the shop to get dinner supplies.

We got back to the campsite and fancied a dip in the hottub, so we did that for a couple of hours, though it was incredibly hot!

We got out and had a shower and then it was time for dinner.

We had a BBQ for dinner, though it was too cold to sit outside so we went inside and had a lovely meal!

After this, we went to the onsite games room and all had an amazing time playing the games there. There was table tennis, fußball, pool & air hockey. We were here for ages and then had to head to bed at 22:00!

Tomorrow is another driving day but not too long, which is a positive.

This time last year!

Poroporoaki!

– Mr & Mrs Hale