Outside of Tauranga


This wonderful Kereru (NZ native wood pigeon) was quite happy for me to take it’s photo. I got 3 or 4 of it while it was perched here despite the fact that I had a group of 6 noisy school kids nearby. I was thrilled to spot it and even more thrilled to get photos.  When it flew off it actually flew so close to me that I felt the breeze from it’s wings at the top of my head! What a buzz for a bird fanatic like me! I took this in a walk through aviary at Hamilton Zoo and although we had to rush in this trip I will be doing a very slow walk through when we go back as a family. I saw a Weka in another part of the Zoo (although it was not as photogenic!) and I’d never seen a Weka before (except for on the Tv) so I was doubly happy!

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

I did a quick google search on Kereru before this post and I found this great site which I hope you will check out. It has several short Kereru videos including one so drunk on fermented berries it actually falls out of the tree! There’s a longer video on the home page that shows some of the stunning forest’s that Kereru and many other native birds live in if you feel like a bit of “bush walking!” I also found this video clip on YouTube of a Weka going about it’s daily business. The Weka looks like it’s a cross between out native Kiwi and Pukeko’s. In the background you can also hear the call of a Morepork.

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Yesterday we went on s school trip to Hamilton Zoo. It was a great trip and while there I took as many photos as I could…ofcourse! This handsome young fellow is a Kune Kune pig (which I believe means ‘fat and round’ in Maori) and I had to post him today with my 2 things challenge entry because he is just 2 cute!

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

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The 2 things challenge entry theme this week is Yellow/Brick. All mediums are welcome!

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

I had thought I would post these a little sooner but a family emergancy meant other things took over! This is Opunake Beach. Opunake has world famous surf running along it’s coastlines and it hosts international Surfing championships. I lived here for 7 years and feel quite attached to the wild west coast and this great beach! You can see the volcanic origins of the sand in the marbling on the beach. The cliff tops are what form the black line on the map, the edge of NZ quite literally! I love this place! The singular rock doesn’t portray the rocky nature of the coastline very well, this area in particular had many ships run a ground of sink here in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. The beach was initially intended to be the main port of Taranaki but proved to be far too rough and 2 major wharf’s fell victim to the sea.  Nature in all her beauty and wisdom obviously had other ideas!

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

We’re back home again after a great few days away in Taranaki.  It was so good to go back for a while and very tempting to stay! The drive down was wonderful, Autumn is fantastic time to travel through the country and a lot of NZs highways are dotted with ranges and farmlands so the view was great the whole way down the island. Well, technically across and down as we live on the opposite coastline!

I took photos on the way there and have other photos to come as soon as I have resized them!

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

Top photo: Corrogated Iron Kiwi in Otrohonga aka Kiwi Town! Next photo: An autumn highway photo through the windscreen…just before Otrohonga. Photo 3: Mokau- just before the Taranaki region officially begins. Photo 4: My mountain. Ok, everyones Mountain. The fabulous Mount Taranaki (also known as Mt Egmont) taken at the first peak we got of Taranaki. By the time we’d travelled closer and around her the cloud had tucked the moutain away again! Hard to believe that this could be invisiable but it’s true! I did get photos later though!

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

The kids are at school, the sun was definately shining and DH was on his day off…sounds like a great excuse for a ride! Anzac bay is not to far from Tauranga and I spent a lot of time here when I was growing up.  The beach is quite shallow for the first 50 meters or so and then it drops quite quickly and makes for good fishing! Today I do more ‘viewing’ than fishing but I enjoy it just as much! (The Island in the middle of the photo is Matakana Island.)Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

The words ‘world famous…in New Zealand’ were part of a nation wide television advertisement for L&P  a few years back and they’ve become almost as famous as the drink itself. The letters L&P stand for “Lemon & Paeroa” and Paeroa is the town it is brewed in. The addition of “Paeroa” to the name though actually comes from the fact that a natural water spring is used in the making of this drink. It quite litteraly contains part of Paeroa! Stopping for photographs at this bottle is the ‘done thing’ when you go to Paeroa and has been for many years. One day may even dig out and scan the photo of me standing by the bottle when I was young girl! You can find out  more about Paeroa here if you wish to read on.

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

I am stepping outside Tauranga for this post because  the big family day out has  finally arrived and our much anticipated trip to “Rainbows End” was a great hit. We had a blast and rode the roller coaster (NZ’s only corkscrew roller coaster) did the 18 storey/85 kph fear fall (not pictured) got wet on the log flume and bumper boats, spun about on the power surge and enjoyed the many other sights and rides!  We even managed a trip to Grandpa’s house at the end of the day and despite the 26 degree heat I would have to say it was a great day all round. Copyright Lisa Sarsfield 2009

If your ever in Auckland I definately recommend Rainbows End as a days entertainment. This was my 3rd trip here, the first I was the kid, the second I was the teenager and the third I am the parent with kids so I guess that makes me fairly well qualified to recommend it! There’s plenty to see and do in Auckland and there is of course a daily photo blog giving you a personal tour around some of it… http://www.awalkthroughauckland.blogspot.com/

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