Trip Start Jun 13, 2006
Trip End Jun 12, 2007

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Flag of New Zealand  ,
Saturday, March 24, 2007

Alex: Our first stop after Auckland was Whangarei, the biggest difficulty here is trying to work out how to say the name (fan-ga-ray, I think). We used Whangarei as a base to see some of the nearby sights, the first being the Bay of Islands an hour north. We didn't go out on into the bay so missed out on the major draw of the place and the weather treated us to drizzle and cloud but still it is still a pretty place and we spent a little bit of time just sat on the beach enjoying the view.

We also visited the Poor Knights Islands which is a diving mecca. I snorkeled which was great, and I manage to catch a glimpse of a couple of Stingrays and swam through loads of schools of beautiful fish, the only problem is the water which is a bit chilly. Dean did a couple of dives too but I will let him tell you about those. The highlight was the humpback whale which joined us in the bay, unfortunately after we had all got out of the water but it was still a great experience. The Poor Knights Islands are very pretty, you can't go on the islands themselves as the islands, like the water around them, are nature reserves but you can still appreciate the craggy rocks, trees and bird life from the water. The islands are pretty much unspoilt as many of the introduced pest on the mainland never arrived here and although people have lived on them the numbers were minimal. Other than the cold water the only other downer on the day was the journey to and from the island which was "lumpy"!

Dean:  I love diving, but I really dislike boating!  This is a bit of a problem when you want to get out to some of the worlds best dive spots!  The trip out to the island was a bit rough but once we got there I was fine.  Two dives, one at 'Trevor's Rock' and the other at 'Shag Bay', both with a really good divemaster as my dive buddy, which made both dives really interesting (she knew where all the good stuff was!).  The trip back was also a bit rough but I survived!  Maybe I'll get use to the boating over time...  if not I'll carry on having the experience of chucking up before every dive!!!
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trevnjean on

NZ looks great
The photo's of The Bay of Islands look great. Nice to catch up with what you've been doing this past week. Hope the caving was OK - scary. Love Mum and Dad M

gtk on

Dean, I'm glad you are enjoying your diving. I bet you can't wait to get back to the UK for some cold, drysuit diving. Gordon

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