Archive for September, 2009

Change of plans

We flicked on the TV whilst having breakfast this morning to see news of a tsunami heading towards NZ following the earthquake off Samoa. They were predicting that it would hit Napier later in the morning with waves of up to 1 metre. This is quite scary news when you’re from the UK and not [...]

Wine tour

The weather forecast wasn’t good for today but it turned out great. This morning we went for a walk around Napier and followed an art-deco tour route.

Taupo to Napier

Today has been mostly about avoiding the rain. We were planning to spend the day on and around Lake Taupo but at times the rain was so heavy that we could barely see the lake so we changed our plans. First we went to Huka Falls which is a section of rapids on the Waikoto  [...]


First off today, a trip round Lake Rotorua with a picture stop: Then a stop at the Skyride gondola and luge for a cable car trip up the hill and a go on the luge (like a soapbox car down a winding route back down the mountain) with a chairlift back to the top. Next [...]

Waitomo caves

Yesterday we drove to Waitomo (about 3hrs South of Auckland). Along the way we drove through some pretty heavy rain but by the time we arrived late morning it was bright and warm again. There are 3 main caves at Waitomo and we went in Ruakuri and the Glow Worm cave. The caves are formed [...]

Auckland, New Zealand

Day 1 of the New Zealand leg of the journey began with a very early arrival into Auckland and the collection of a rather too large car. Having several hours to kill before being able to check into the hotel for a much needed shower, we headed to Mount Eden for some panoramic views of [...]

The day that never happened

Well this is confusing: Yesterday we were in the US. Today we’re in New Zealand. Yesterday was Wednesday. Today is Friday. See what’s missing there? We boarded a plane in LA at 23:30 on Wednesday, flew for 13 hours, crossed the dateline and landed in Auckland at 07:15 on Friday. We’ve lost a day of [...]

Hot, hot, hot

We’re now sat in our hotel bar back in Hollywood passing the time until our pickup for the airport in about 2 hours. Today we took the metro from Hollywood & Vine to downtown LA. We saw City Hall (the building was used as the offices for The Daily Planet in the Superman TV series), [...]

Day 2: Beverly Hills & Santa Monica

Santa Monica Pier Today we took one of the “hop-on, hop-off” bus tours from Hollywood Boulevard via Beverly Hills to Santa Monica beach. We didn’t spend much time in Beverly Hills -¬† it’s mainly geared up for (very expensive) shopping or celeb spotting and neither really interest us. The celebrity/tourist thing is a bit crazy: [...]

From Heathrow to Hollywood

Hollywood map The first leg of our journey is complete. We arrived in LA after an uneventful 11 hour flight to find it warm and sunny. We immediately went in search of Hollywood Boulevard and a Hollywood sign photo opportunity. With this mission complete, it was early to bed (by LA time – about 4am [...]