AucklandJune 5, 2015 in New Zealand ⋅ ⛅ 52 °F
Feeling like we might be turning the jet-lag curve, we decided to climb Mount Eden after breakfast.
Mount Eden or Maungawha is the highest peak within Auckland city's volcanic field, which comprises of approximately 50 individual volcanoes. Mount Eden rises up over its urban surroundings at nearly 200 metres with a 50 metre crater at its summit. Learning that it offered great 360-degree views of the city and surrounding country we decided we had to climb up to take a look for ourselves.
At the risk of sounding arrogant, the climb up Mount Eden did not appear to be as arduous as our previous hikes up to the Hollywood sign or Bunsen Peak at Yellowstone NP for example. However we are breath was still laboured when we reached the summit. The land fell away on both sides, on one back down to the city, on the other down into the bowl of the summit's crater. The dormancy of the volcano had allowed grass to cover its surface all the way down to the crater's bottom. Signs warned against attempts to climb down into the crater but even so it appeared it would be a challenge to climb back out if you did descend into it. Seeing tiny people and vehicles on the opposite edge of the crater gave greater perceptive on its size and scale.
The rains of yesterday had ebbed away leaving bright warm sunshine to kiss our faces as we circumnavigated the crater's edge. Blue sky matched the colour of the water in the bay, which glistened as the sun turned above. Auckland's landmarks, the Space Needle, the Harbour Bridge, Eden Park and more were all visible from our vantage point, standing out to not let us forget where we were. As we rounded the crater and our perspective changed, the Space Needle appeared to merge with the trees on the mount as if it too was part of them. We ate sandwiches in the sun before descending back down into Auckland, just in time as the rain returned.
We spent the afternoon planning the next few days of our trip, calculating how to make the most of our budget. Similar to Trek America, Kiwi Experience offers the opportunity to do additional activities so we're so trying to decide what we most want to do. We also brought BBH cards, which are like a savings/loyalty card for hostels in New Zealand. Whilst it seems an expensive outlay ($45 each), we've already made savings of $24 on our accommodation in Paihia and when we return to Auckland.Read more