West coast, NorthlandDecember 20, 2017 in New Zealand ⋅ ☀️ 19 °C
Our next stop was a long drive down to Rawene which is were we would be camping for the night. There was a long drive down and a wait for the ferry, but a swimming pool was waiting for us at the end, bliss. We visited the huge and stately kauri trees the next day. Tane Mahuta is really quite awe-inspiring, especially when you hear the rather beautiful Maori creation story it is part of. Kauri aren't as big as the redwoods we saw in California, but they somehow seem more imposing and grand.
We stayed in relative luxury at the Trounson Top 10 so we could take advantage of their kiwi tour, but we told it wasn't running because of lack of interest! But they did give us a DIY kiwi hunting kit and at 10pm, we set out for the reserve with a Dutch father and son who also wanted to see a kiwi. We set off on the boardwalk through the reserve and shone our huge red light into the bushes, keeping as quiet as possible. And after 10 minutes or so we were rewarded by seeing a little kiwi rustling around in the bushes in front of us! We must have watched it for 2 minutes or more and it came within a few metres of us! It was the only kiwi we saw that night, but we had an amazing time creeping through the dark, listening to kiwi and ruru calls. Apparently very few kiwis (people) have ever seen a kiwi (bird) in the wild, so we feel incredibly lucky to have experienced it. Probably one of our best evenings spend in NZ!Read more