Been There Done That, Natural Wonders, New Zealand, Things To Do, Walks

Tongariro Alpine Crossing – NZ Best Day Walk

Completing the Tongariro Alpine Crossing was considered a top bucket list item for me. Many consider this to be New Zealand’s best day hike! The 19.4 kilometer walk took us roughly 6 1/2 hours to complete with lots of photography stops and a brief lunch break. My original plans were cancelled when New Zealand weather went nuts and decided to dump ridiculous amounts of rain on the entire North Island.   The back-up plan included Andrew and our…

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Been There Done That, New Zealand, Things To Do, Walks

Redwoods Treewalk Rotorua

The Redwoods Treewalk in Rotorua, New Zealand is an incredible experience for anyone not rattled by heights.  The vision of then German tourist (now resident) and mechanical engineer, Alex Schmid, was to create a bird’s eye view of these magnificent 100+ year old giants.  The 23 suspension bridges are situated 6-12 meters above ground forming a loop through the California Redwoods. The experience is a self-guided walk with plenty of benches for bird watching and easy…

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Animal Parks, Australia, Been There Done That, Family Friendly, Things To Do

Tropical Fruit World

My determination to visit Tropical Fruit World may seem silly to most but my love for fruit extends back to childhood. Give me a bowl of strawberries over a chocolate bar anytime!  When we were scouting out areas between Gold Coast and Byron Bay, Tropical Fruit World sounded like a perfect place to stop off for a couple hours.   They farm over 500 exotic fruits and the experience includes a tasting, farm tour, petting zoo, boat…

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Family

Kiwi vs American – Expat Word Comparison

Aubrey landed in New Zealand as a six-year-old having completed only one year of primary school in the United States.  She began immediately picking up Kiwi words/slang and using the new terms in her day-to-day life.  Over the last year I have seen a change in her accent as well and now at 8 1/2 she uses the new terms so seamlessly.  I wanted to document her now before our move to Australia to be…

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Been There Done That, Natural Wonders, New Zealand, Things To Do, Walks

Wai-O-Tapu Geothermal Wonderland & Lady Knox Geyser

New Zealand’s thermal explorer highway between Rotorua and Taupo provides numerous opportunities to see geothermal activities like boiling mud pools, steam vents and geysers. The Lady Knox Geyser located at the Wai-O-Tapu (Sacred Waters) Thermal Wonderland offers a chance for a front row viewing of a geyser erupting. Once we arrived at the facility and purchased tickets, they asked that we drive to the viewing platform located 4 minutes from the admissions building.  The geyser…

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Been There Done That, New Zealand, Things To Do, Walks, Waterfalls

Wairere Falls Track – New Zealand

The Wairere Falls Track starts next to a dairy farm located 10 minutes from Matamata, New Zealand. This incredible 153 meter waterfall is a stunner even from the car park. The trail leads you through beautiful bush and large boulders.  The early part of the walk is an easy stroll. Check out the massive trees! The bridge crosses over Wairere Falls and I could not help but be in awe of the green moss-covered rocks….

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Beaches, Been There Done That, Family Friendly, New Zealand, Places to Stay, Things To Do, Walks, Waterfalls

Waihi Beach Top 10 Holiday Park

One thing I learned after moving here… New Zealanders love to camp!   I grew up in Arkansas and have memories of camping at the lake or a river. My girls had not experienced a tent until moving to New Zealand and that was mostly due to my desire to not sleep on the ground.  I finally agreed once Andrew purchased a 3 room tent with air mattresses, cooking gear and extra warm sleeping bags….

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Australia, Been There Done That, Things To Do, Walks

Tamborine Rainforest Skywalk

Mount Tamborine in Queensland, Australia would be the perfect weekend getaway.  There are so many great walks, wineries, shops and much more to keep you busy.  We drove up for the day and would love to go back! The Tamborine Rainforest Skywalk is a self guided tour through a beautiful Australian rainforest situated on 30 acres of private land.  Basically this is Andrew’s worst nightmare as he hates heights!  The Skywalk track starts on a steel…

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Been There Done That, Natural Wonders, New Zealand, Things To Do, Walks

Te Puia Pōhutu Gyser Eruption

Te Puia is a popular tourist attraction located on the edge of Rotorua, New Zealand.  The complex is rich with Maori culture like the carving and weaving institute, model pre-European village and cultural performance as well as a Kiwi bird house. The 60 hectares of geothermal activity within the Te Whakarewarewa Valley was the highlight of the experience for me. The Pōhutu geyser known to be the Southern Hemisphere’s largest active geyser extending to a maximum…

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