Day 25-Dec 9/22- to Coromandel Peninsula, Hahei Beach and Hot Water Beach

Again we hear that this weather is not the norm, that el nina and global warming is to blame.

Tāmaki Makaurau is the Māori name for Auckland, means Tāmaki desired by many. It is at the narrowest part of the island…. So accessible by both oceans. Auckland also place of sails with over 500,000 watercraft

1840 treaty signed … constitution between all people under one king.

The capital first was Okiato then to Auckland and then to Wellington. It changed to Wellington because it was located in the middle of the two islands.

Mount Telemaki is the name of the volcano north of Auckland. The black sand in the area is from the lava from that volcano. Because of the high iron content the sand is very hot on feet when it is sunny.

1000 years ago…. People came from Couiki(French Polynesia) but the great migration came about 1300 ad. From those there were 8 major tribes of Māori. The Maoris are the best combat warriors in world in hand to hand combat.

1648… Abel Tesman was the first “white” explorer the come.

In 1776…. Captain Cook arrived. He called Christchurch…. Banks Isl. cause he thought it was an island.

NZ Flax (Harakeke) is used to in the making of clothing, fishing nets & lines & many other uses.

Lamb raised is mainly for Merino wool. It is the be all, end all. It breathes, is warm, doesn’t get smelly & dries fast. It also doesn’t itch.

Lots of Fresian cows-highest producers of dairy. Our guide told us that they are white but after being in the field a while they turn black, they then bring them in to milk then when they send them back out they are white again…. Lol!!!

Honey that is made by bees that feed on the melaleuca (called something else here… manukau ) bushes, is big business here.

Firth of Thames… furthest Cook got….. 1769. In late 1800s the area hoping was like wild west because gold was discovered

Driving into an area of beautiful hills with native trees and ferns and introduced trees (that because of the ideal growing conditions, matures in 15-20 years. In other countries takes hundreds of years). Now they are trying to get the native to be reintroduced to the areas that has had the non-native trees.

Kauri trees….. huge and straight. The ones that were over 2000 years old were all cut down. These 2 are over 700years. They are sub-tropical. The trail has been closed for their protection. The soul brought in on people boots were being absorbed by the trees and killing them.

We cannot see a thing because of the fog/low cloud …. Can’t see the terrific view 😂 of dolphins jumping in the sea. We were just remarking that we can’t believe this weather. It just doesn’t want to quit!

We are going down to the beach at Hot Water Beach to make “hot tubs” in the sand with shovels we got from our accommodations…. Accommodations that are one room huts cute and better than sleeping a tent but do not include bathrooms. You have to walk to a community washroom like when camping). We had so much fun. You have to search for spots that have hot water under the sand (geothermal). If we knew at the start how to recognize the spots (they had bubbles coming to the surface like when you are searching for clams in the sand). Some spots were so hot it seriously was scalding my feet. Everyone including others not from our group would sit in these nice warm pools only to have a big wave come crashing in and taking out the walls.

Mokos is the name of Māori tattoos on the face. It tells a story of each persons life.

Hahei (translation is Ha’s nose) is name of the town after the Island in the bay that someone thought looked like a nose.

Mercury Bay named because Cook used Mercury to navigate.

We went to where Narnia was filmed. Most of the group went to Cathedral Cave, I went partway veering off down to Stingray Bay. You cannot see any stingrays today cuz the waves were pounding in. It was a really good hike down and back up with so many giant ferns on the way….. amazing!

Pohutukawa…. New Zealand Christmas Tree. They already are decorated with red bobbles on them…in the form of dark red fluffy/spikey flowers.

All endemic trees are evergreen.

10,248 steps (13 stories)

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