• Gisborne from a lookout on Titirangi-Kaiti Hill. Photo by Damon Meade

What to See and Do in Gisborne

December 12th, 2018|Tags: , , , , |

Gisborne, the most easterly city in the world, is the first city on the planet to see the light of each new day; it’s where Māori landed their voyaging waka (canoes) in the 14th century after navigating across the Pacific Ocean; it’s home to Millton Vineyards and Winery, the first producer in New Zealand to [...]

Whakatane to Opotiki

December 12th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

Ride the Dunes Trail section of Motu Trails Six years after it was opened, the Motu Trails (motutrails.co.nz) has become one of the highlight visitor attractions of the eastern Bay of Plenty/Tairāwhiti regions. There is a range of levels to choose from, with Ōpōtiki’s Dunes Trail at the easy end. Even so, the popular 9km [...]

  • Waipu Caves

Waipu – Highland at Heart

December 12th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , , |

Planning on visiting Waipu? What better way to begin a New Year than to experience the sights and sounds of the traditional Waipu Highland Games with clans, kilts and cabers, pipe bands and bagpipes, sports, stalls and Scottish dancing! Each New Year’s Day Waipu celebrates its Scottish and Nova Scotian heritage, as it has done [...]

  • The coast section is a real stunner (credit: TBS Photography)

Remutaka Cycle Trail – A Great Ride

December 12th, 2018|Tags: , , , , |

I begin my cycle mission on the foreshore at Petone – the official start of the Remutaka Cycle Trail. With my GPS units set to record every second of my experience so I can continue building the Great Rides App, I’m away. The sky is blue and there is a little chop on the harbour [...]

  • Tolaga Bay wharf under a full moon. Photo by Damon Meade

Gisborne Road Trip

December 12th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , , |

When I first arrived as an import from the South Island, ‘hybrid vigour’ my husband used to say about me. The east coast of the North Island is now my backyard, but as is so often the way, I’ve travelled the rest of New Zealand and the world before exploring my own neighbourhood. For this [...]

  • Above: The quaint Ohakune Railway Station which is still in use Left: On the old viaduct and appreciating the new one beyond

A Great Ride – A Ride in the Park

November 11th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , |

So it was that on a cool autumn day my wife and I headed to the centre of the North Island. We were conscious of an ex-tropical weather system that was bearing down on the region, threatening to thwart our plan. Our plan was to have an easy ride together on day one, riding the [...]

  • Bronze statue of a mare and her foal outside the Town Hall in Cambridge was unveiled in March 2004

Cambridge Connections

November 11th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Cambridge is way more than a one-horse town. As the centre of New Zealand’s equine industry, the Waikato town is surrounded by prosperous-looking stud farms, a number of training tracks and arenas, and the Cambridge raceway. There’s a life-size sculpture of a mare and foal outside the town hall, and the town’s pavements feature an [...]

  • Model ships trace the history of naval vessels

Torpedo Bay Navy Museum

November 11th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , |

Who knew that a string of mines once stretched across Auckland Harbour to protect the city from invasion? I certainly did not. This startling gem was just one of the facts imparted during the time it took to enjoy a cup of coffee with Jane Cotty, Communications Manager for the National Museum of the Royal [...]

  • Misty sunrise at Kawakawa

‘On Yer Bike’ – Northland Rail Trail Holiday

November 11th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , |

We’re just recreational riders knocking on in years, using everyday bikes and no fancy equipment, so we plan our rides accordingly, with daily stage lengths of 40km or less, and a relaxed timeframe that allows rest and sightseeing time en route. We use our campervan as home base for each night. It’s a two-berth Toyota [...]

Weekend in the Capital

September 10th, 2018|Tags: , , , , |

We are perched in a high-rise building with a glimpse of the sea. Through the binoculars I see people in the building across the way, with headphones on, talking – people in cubicles, staring at screens. I notice one of the computer screens looks like the colour of my tax return. That’s interesting. “We are [...]