woensdag 25 november 2009

Today is 26th. November 2009.
We are not sure whether it is Wednesday or Thursday. We have no newspaper or something else to look what is the exact day today (I am writing this off line).
I know now; it is Thursday. (Dat was even schrikken).

Yesterday we were in the neighborhood of Rotorua, a well known place for:
- its Lake
- thermal baths
- scenic lookouts (you’ll find these everywhere)
- hot water springs
- steaming cliffs
- the famous “White and Pink terraces” destroyed in 1886 as consequence
of an eruption of Mount Tarawera (height nowadays 1111 meters)
- the “Buried Village” about which more later.

We camped in a place called Waitake, a camping with hot pools.
The camping was a nonety but the pools were nice (mostly 38 degrees C) and we lay in them all. No swimming, just sitting around in the nice hot water. But I wrote that already yesterday.

The “buried village” (I called it yesterday “ the hidden village by mistake”) was called “Te Wairoa” and I don’t know the reason.
In the same eruption of Mount Tarawera of 1886, this village was smothered under lava, hot ashes, rocks, etc. and some people died.
Nowadays there is a small hike through the diggings of this buried village and it looked like the Chinese gold digging village we visited a week ago on the South Island.
The difference was that lots of artifacts and utensils were grey (from being buried for a long time under ashes of the eruption) in this village and in the other village they were just rusted.
There was a waterfall too and I filmed that one.
But very interesting, of course like most of the events, functions, reserves, lookouts, parks, views here in New Zealand, and we were very, very happy that we didn’t miss this very interesting site.
The New Zealanders know exactly how to attract tourists.

Last night we camped in a place called Whangamata.
It has a beach with rather large waves and some guys were surfing and now and then they succeeded in surfing and that was nice to see.
The beach was very clean and the weather really nice, so we stayed for a few hours on this beach but we didn’t swim (much to cold).

Today we would visited one of THE tourist attractions near the city of Coromandel (well known to the New Zealanders as a historic gold town). It concerns a railway (with a very small track like the rails are only 50 cm’s apart) of not less than 3 Km’s with lots of turns, tunnels (2 but 4 of you go back the same way!! which you have to, otherwise you have to walk down the mountain), bridges, wissels (I don’t know the English name, but I know the “wisselwachter” in German which is: Reichseisenbahnknotenpunkthinundherschieber) and lots of interesting things like:
- pottery along the track (the builder of the railway has a pottery as well),
- empty bottles as walls to keep the earth from burying the track,
- all kinds of rusted iron tools along the track,
- signs with names of trees (Kauri*, Muri, etc.)
- little station buildings built by the potter himself,
- a lookout tower which is called the “Eifeltower” and here too I don’t see
the reason and it does not look like the Eifeltower at all,
- etc.

* About the Kauri I could tell you some stories but I don’t.

After this awesome view in the life of a potter we set for the camping where we are now. We are in a place called Hot Water Beach near a place called Hahei. Hahei is well known for its Cathedral Cove, which we are going to visit tomorrow.
Well, you already understood that there is hot water on the beach.
When it is low tide and you dig holes in the beach near the waterline, water of about 60 degrees C erupts and mixing it with seawater, it should be:
- nice (if not to hot or to cold)
- very healthy because the water contains all sorts of very healthy
minerals like (salt, calcium and all other sorts of very healthy minerals).

The weather is nice today although we have lots of wind (I have never visited a country with so much wind and with so much sheep).
For people who love sheep this must be really heaven, especially the South Island.

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