New Zealand

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    • Day 189

      Unter der Erde

      August 8, 2019 in New Zealand ⋅ 🌧 10 °C

      Unter der Erde ist es gar nicht so langweilig, wie wir vielleicht immer gedacht haben. Gleich drei Tropfsteinhöhlen habe ich vor einigen Tagen in Waitomo besichtigt. In zweien davon waren besagte Glühwürmchen zahlreich vorhanden. Aber auch beeindruckende Stalagmiten und Stalaktiten wachsen dort. Dafür brauchen sie mehrere Hunderttausende von Jahren. Ein Stalagtit beispielsweise wächst einen Quadratzentimeter - ungefähr die Größe eines Zuckerwürfels - in 10 (oder waren es 100?) Jahren.

      In Neuseeland gibt es zahlreiche Höhlen und häufig wurden sie eher zufällig entdeckt. Da es dabei nicht ohne Konflikte zwischen Staat und Landeigentümer um die Besitzansprüche blieb, wurde ein Gesetz erlassen. Die Höhle geht in Privatbesitz, wenn sie mit mehr als 75 Prozent der Fläche unter eben jenem privat besessenen Land liegt. Die Entscheidung, ob die Höhle öffentlich zugänglich gemacht - also kommerzialisiert - wird, obliegt dann dem Besitzer. So eine interessante Einnahmequelle ist mir auch noch nicht untergekommen.
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    • Day 51


      February 1, 2017 in New Zealand ⋅ 🌙 27 °C

      I had set some very early alarms so I could wake up and go to the hot pools at low tide with most of the others. I was way too tired to wake up then so I decided I'd just wake up for sunset but that plan failed as well. I woke up around 6:30 and quickly got ready and had a half assed breakfast before boarding the bus again. After a very restless bus ride we stopped at a supermarket and ate some lunch before driving the rest of the way to Waitoma. Our first stop was at the Black Water Rafting center where all of us had to pay and get checked in. Then those with later times went and checked into the hostels. I tried to get some sleep for the hour I had to spare but my room was quite loud due to Daniel, Felix, Kk and Siri and I gave up after awhile. Then it was time to go to the rafting so I changed bought some caffeine and then jumped in the van. We all got suited up and ready to go in our cold wet wetsuits. After a short little drive we were at the entrance to the cave which we had to abseil down into. Besides the fact that I was so light that I couldn't go very fast it was very fun and a great first abseil experience. After that we walked a little and then zip lined in the pitch dark as we watched the glow worms. Next was snack time consisting of hot chocolate and a very large flapjack. Then we jumped down into the water and pulled ourselves up the stream where our guide told us all about the glow worms. After rafting back down we continued walking and sliding our way down the cave. After another stop for chocolate we climbed our way out of the cave through a series of waterfalls which was a great way to end the trip. Once back at the rafting center we had some bagels and soup before heading back to our hostel, showering, eating then going down to the bar. I played quite a few games of pool (all of which I won) and had the best shot ever to win the game after I had already scored three in a row. After some swinging and talking at the play structure across the street we headed back and quickly fell asleep.Read more

    • Day 270


      April 12, 2017 in New Zealand ⋅ ☀️ 22 °C

      Have you ever burned your feet while walking on a beach?
      Most of us have probably experienced very hot, sun-heated sand but it is something different that makes this beach in New Zealand special. It is indeed not the sun and actually not even the sand that turns the ground into a stovetop. It is the ground water that seeps through fractures in the ground and gets heated by volcanic activity 2km under the surface of the earth before it rises to the surface again. This water reaches temperatures around 60 degrees which, trust me, is enough to burn your feet.
      But if you dig a hole at the right spot where the hot ground water is mixed with the cold ocean water you get a perfectly warm spa pool directly on the beach.
      It was definitely fun to experience this one of a kind phenomenon, our earth truly is amazing. 💕
      Waitomo is famous for its Glowworm Caves and deservedly so. We joined a tour where we got to walk down into the cave where we got to see some magnificent stone formations and even got a little concert to show us the perfect accustics down there. 💕 The highlight of the tour though was the boat ride at the end.
      You enter a part of the cave that would be completely pitch black if it weren't for the millions of Glowworms that cover the ceilling of the cavesystem.
      They glow in a turquoise blue-ish light and it truly is a magical sight. I have never seen anything like it and it definitely was a once in a lifetime experience and one of the many highlights of our New Zealand tour. 💕
      On our way to Rotorua we spotted some ostrich and of course New Zealand's famous sheep.
      Later that evening we went to a Maori cultural show. It was really informative and interesting and we got to see the Haka dance and other Maori dances. It was a great night with amazing food. 💕
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