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Northland and Auckland, landscape and wildlife photography and a photo essay at Waitangi

Arrived in Auckland in New Zealand, after thirty hours of air travel and a thirteen-hour time shift, to long queues at the airports’ immigration and then again at customs. It was early evening by the time we picked up the rental car and drove the short distance from to Mangere for an overnight stop and evening meal at a local restaurant.

Bay of Islands

Drive north from Mangere through the Auckland region to Piahia on the Bay of Islands in Northland. Apart from Auckland's sprawling suburbs, our travels were through rolling countryside, grassland, pastures and mixed forests. The sun was shining so we detoured off SH1 onto the coast road to see the North Auckland seaside town of Orewa.

The weather was poor, overcast with wind and rain - the roaring forties, so when we arrived in Piahia we decided to chill out at the motel. Our body clock was still on UK time, so we only ventured out that evening for a stroll in the wind and drizzle for a meal at the local Chinese Restaurant.

Next morning we toured the local area in the rain: Waitangi Treaty Grounds, Haruru Falls, Kerikeri town with its stone store, Rewa's Village and Rainbow Falls. I’m unimpressed with the area, its attractions and the weather so my camera stayed in the bag most of the time. The only interesting attraction was Rewa's Village, an outdoor museum that replicates an eighteenth century Maori fishing village. It continued to rain so we set off for Waitangi.

Whangarei

To keep the driving distances down while recovering from possible jet lag I planned to get a closer to Howick so I booked an overnight stay in Waitangi rather than Piahia for a second night.

Next morning saw a marked improvement in the weather so we stopped at the Whangarei Town Basin’s Hatea River for a stroll along the Heritage Trail and Hihiaua Art Walkway. After our walk, thoroughly recommend, we travelled south towards Howick, a south Auckland suburb.

Photo Essay – Whangarei Town Basin’s Heritage Trail and Hihiaua Art Walkway

Auckland and the Southern Suburb of Howick

En-route we stopped at Langs Beach and Orewa Beach on the coast road north of Auckland before checking into the Howick Motor Lodge for two nights. We had arranged to meet my wife's friends Brenda & Jim at their house for drinks and then dinner. The next day we went into Auckland city via the Half Moon Bay Ferry rather than drive. While in the city we took the ferry across to Devonport for a look around. Nothing seems to have changed since I was there over thirty years ago, Auckland still doesn’t make my favourite cities list.