The morning routine – Jason wakes at 5am and makes subtle noises with the intention of getting us awake. We start with the usual toilet run – Jason hates it when we pee in the campervan as it means he’ll have to empty it at the dump station more frequently. Cups of tea & cereal whilst Harrison snoozes away – by second breakfast (fresh eggs on bagels), Harrison has usually surfaced from the sweet scent throughout the camper.
After a quick fuel stop in which we used our 35 cent off a litre mega discount voucher thanks to Countdown (spend over $200 in a shop), we were left with a fuel bill of $32.15 – sweet as, Bro as they say in NZ. A little dip into McD’s for some coffee and FREE Wi-Fi, then we head to our daily activity.
It was supposed to be the gondola and luge rides but Harrison had a last minute “nooooooooo” – I want to see a kiwi moment, so we reversed into Rainbow Springs Nature Park. Not a bad choice an hour in, where we upgraded our ticket to the ‘Kiwi Encounter’ and got an exclusive guide through the whole hatchery process which made sense to us since we hatched our own little chicks just last year. The only difference is kiwi eggs take up 70 days to incubate and chickens are around 21 days. Too much to write about our learnings but it was very interesting. At the end we learnt that their last kiwi chick for the season was born on Harrison’s birthday so he was pretty chuffed about that!
Following our tour we checked out the other creatures of the park including some Australian birds, some fish which Jason wished he’d packed the old fly rod for (Rainbow Trout), and also a laser machine which Harrison proudly earned 6th place! He was jumping with joy.
Next stop Taupo! Beautiful drive through NZ’s greenest hills. You cannot get bored with the scenery, except if you’re 11 years old. Once we arrived at Taupo we checked into one of our most anticipated camper parks which has recently had a mega upgrade of their pool area. Think swim up bar, 4-metre-deep dark cave, open pool area, sun chairs galore – seriously an awesome place to be except it’s quite cool out of the sun.
The night will end with Jason cooking up some NZ steak and veges and our usual cup of tea & chocolate whilst watching the sunset. Tomorrow we head off to ‘Uncle Clint’s and Aunty Ngai’s’ for some family farm time – it will be a much welcome change and looking forward to it. (Julie)