We set off on our road trip north up Highway 1, which soon becomes a normal 2-way road despite its grand name. We have two cars between us but don’t drive in convoy, making sure each car has a working mobile phone. We all stop for lunch in Dargaville and I get treated to the Mother’s Day Special in a little cafe as today is Mother’s Day in this part of the world. Billy continues with his beef, scallop, beef, beef, scallop theme, but we’re all so full we have to take our kumara cake away with us to eat later.
|Lined up in front of one of the biggest kauris|
|Sun setting at the mouth of Hokianga Harbour|
|Tree House kitchen, dorms off to the left.|
|The Hokianga car ferry which criss-crosses from Rawene to Kohukohu all day long|
|Billy outside the Hundertwasser toilets at Kawakawa|
|Inside the ladies loo. The windows are made of coloured bottles|
|Looking down to the sitting room from the landing of our Russell house|
|Looking down the wharf at Russell, with one of many rainbows|
|A tangle of ancient pohutukawa trees on the beach|
Out to eat again this evening, and the Duke of Marlborough comes out favourite when we vote on which restaurant to grace with our presence. It’s the oldest and finest restaurant in Russell, and used to be a famous drinking hole for the riff-raff that made up the population in those days. Once Russell was known as the hell hole of the Pacific because of the savage and drunken behaviour of the whalers and sealers that lived in the place but tonight the D of M seems a very civilised rather up-market establishment even after the Boons arrive and get stuck into the inevitable oysters.
|Detail of the waka at Waitangi|
|Table's all laid for dinner. Oysters are quite cheap here: just as well!|
|Lang's Beach on the way home|
|Looking out over the harbour and bridge to North Shore from Sky Tower|