Monday, February 29, 2016

Thar she blows

After our Coromandel interlude, it was time for our first night in the van, in Rotorua. Although apparently the van handles really well, it's a big beast, and with stops, we need to add an hour or two to whatever Google tells us the driving times are, especially if we encounter windy roads. So by the time we got to Rotorua, did a light bit of shopping, and checked into the motorhome park, it was early evening and that was us done for the day.

Our home on the road

The fridge (left) is literally bigger than the fridge in my apartment

The sad thing is, I actually did try to make the bed for photography purposes. Fail

Rotorua is well known for its thermal activity (and associated sulphurous stink), which we took advantage of by having a dip in the park's own naturally-heated hot pools (and a jump in the cold swimming pool, since the hot water quickly gets unbearable). Once some rowdy teens got told off by someone bigger and braver than us, the park quietened down and we had a pretty good sleep.

We were up relatively bright and early the next day for a short drive out of Rotorua to the Wai-o-Tapu "thermal wonderland". I've been before, but it's still a pretty amazing place - bubbling mud pools, geysers, lakes dyed all kind of crazy colours due to the strong concentrations of minerals leached out of the rocks by the boiling hot water, etc.

We first saw the Lady Knox geyser erupt promptly at 10:15 am - we heard some tourists nearby wondering "how the earth knows it's 10:15 am". The secret is that they put soap down the geyser, which breaks the surface tension, allowing the super-heated water below to burst forth. I've seen this decried on the internet as "fake", which I suppose it is, but there you go. If you want to see a show promptly at 10:15 every day, fake is what you get.

Pre-eruption

Soap goes in

Thar she blows!



The Lady Knox geyser and the mud pools are actually slightly away from the rest of the park, and you can visit them separately if you like (in fact, you can see the mud pools for free). The full entry cost like $35 per person, which is, like everything else in NZ it seems, pretty blooming expensive, but on the other hand, you get several hours of wonderment for your money, so probably an okay deal.

View of the mud pools

I took approximately a million billion photos like this and like 2 of them actually show the mud bubbling

I took so many photos at Wai-o-Tapu, this post will have To Be Continued. I'll just leave you with a photo of our new mate, Tommy Two-Hats, controlling traffic on the State Highway between Rotorua and Taupo.


2 comments:

  1. Haha Tommy Two-Hats! He's not daft - protecting himself from sun-stroke. I was wondering why you hadn't made the bed before you took the pic - on reflection, considering what your bed usually looks like, it is perfect, lol. xxx

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  2. I'm going to convert your NZ$ into euros so that I have a better understanding of the costs. $35 seems really expensive!

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