You may have gathered my last post was largely crafted after I had left Wellington, as this one is being written in the metropolis of Auckland.
Taupo is very similar to Queenstown a largely unreal collection of restaurants, bars, shops and activity outlets all of whom are exclusively focussed on the visitor rather than the resident.
Staying in Taupo was actually felt good. There were less coaches than Queenstown and fewer groups with face masks and cameras…. If you know you know….
The one example of being stuck in two worlds that I forgot to mention last time is that they still have video/dvd rental shops here…. The only word I can think of is ‘quaint’….
We drove from Wellington up Highway 2 to Napier. The scenery is simply stunning.
Napier is an interesting town, very oddly wedded to all things ‘Art Deco’ for some reason we didn’t fathom during our short stay. By the time we got there we only experienced the tale end of that curse of mass tourism…. The cruise ship passenger – on shore… We came, we saw, we walked along the beach a little, had an ice cream and went again.
The landscape on North Island is less dramatic than the South but we took a chair lift to the snow line, saw an active volcano, saw the power of some amazing natural falls, delved deep into caves to see thousands of glow worms clinging to ancient rock roofs and cruised across a huge lake… Not too bad for the middle bit.