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Coromandel to Rotorua - Day 60

Cool cars & Thermal Parks, Views, Luge & Lakes!

21 °C

It rained last night and the awning pooled with water. Andrew pushed it up to get rid of the water and it went everywhere, including some inside the van! We managed to get a hot shower using the coin machine, which wasn't bad at all except having to shower in flip flops and get dressed straight away inside the cubicle.

Today we had a long drive down to Rotorua, but we thought we'd have a look at the Beach Hop while we were here. There were so many cool cars there and we both said we'd love to have an old car like that to drive around in on weekends.

We saw lots of similar cars on the drive too and eventually we got to Rotorua. It was another lovely sunny day, which was only slightly tainted by the smell of sulphur (if you're not sure what this smells like, think sour,rotten eggs). Rotorua is a town based on top of an old erupted volcano and is an area of geothermal activity. We we walked around the town, looking at the lovely museum and lake, then of all a sudden the smell became stronger and we saw the 'thermal area' signs. There were bubbling mud pools and steaming vents on the side of the lake, which were like nothing I'd seen before in such a residential area. We're going to the big geothermal park tomorrow so we'll see much more like this then.

Late afternoon we took the Skyline gondola up to the top of a hill - hanging from a string up high is always my favourite place to spend my time! - to see the view and also have a go on the luge. Rotorua looked really pretty from up there (plus the smell didn't reach here!). The town itself is a bit industrial and not much to write home about. So I won't.

We had an delicious ice cream (hokey pokey is honeycomb/cinder toffee out here and boysenberry is pretty much blackberry), watched two girls go on the swing ride off the mountain and then went on the luge. It was fun going down the track in the little kart, but a bit like on Death Road I took it steady and Andrew had time to get to the bottom and take a picture of me before I got there.

Andrew had said we could get out of the park at the bottom of the luge, but that wasn't true. I had to get on a ski lift chair all the way back to the top!! I've never liked this things since I was a child and they used to have one at Frontierland going across the promenade in Morecambe. Needless to say though, I survived! Check out the helmets too ;)

It was time to head to tonights campsite, but we saw some steam rising from a park and decided to have a look. More mud pools and steaming lakes in a public area! The weird thing about this area was that it had park benches, like you'd want to stop and have your lunch here with the smell?!

As you might have gathered from previous posts, I like street art, and I saw my first (nice) piece in New Zealand on the way out of town.

We camped by Lake Rerewhakaaitu (try and pronounce that!) tonight, a peaceful place with only three other campers on there. We cooked in the dark for the first time and ate by torchlight, which isn't the easiest thing to do. We plan to try and get places before dark as often as possible.

Posted by staceywaugh 05:45 Archived in New Zealand Tagged lakes art birds views geothermal luge

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