Thursday, October 15, 2009

So Stoked for Lord Of the Rings!...I mean New Zealand!

Had a safe journey back to Brisbane, an early morning to the airport, and an uneventful journey to Auckland. Landed in 18 degree weather and rain. As unfortunate as it may have seemed to most, it was kind of nice to have a break from sun, surf, and sand. Quote me and hit me when I'm complaining about the cold back in Canada in 2 months.
After a ridiculous climb down the steepest hill I've ever seen in a city (Yay for 17 kg packs!) I found my hostel. Clean, civilized, and clean. MUCH different from where I was staying in Aus. Did I mention it was clean? The YHA is by far the way to go when it comes to cleanliness standard. The downside, is that they're bloody expensive to stay in in Australia.

*Backpacking Tips and Tricks from Pitts*
It's a good idea to pick up a YHA or any other hosteling card as you'll get great discounts on tours, etc. When booking your hostel be sure to check out before booking through the hostel or the hosteling website. I've done my research and found the same room for $3-4 cheaper online. When I went to book a room through reception, and cringed at the price further explaining I found it cheaper online the girl nodded, and said it is often that way but they obviously don't want to promote it. Furthermore, I've been upgraded to a better room a couple of times because you are able to book one night at a time online, when they often discourage that booking in house :)

Back to the adventure; it was pouring rain the first day I was here so I wandered around with my 2 lovely German roommates. We were later joined that day by another Canadian and had to go out for a celebratory pint. Celebrating what you may ask? Our lives.

Today we made our way to Rangitoto Island which is the youngest volcanic island in Auckland. It was an awesome hike with a fantastic outlook point at the top. We also checked out a couple of the Lava Caves which were exciting and hilarious to navigate through with no torch. Good fun.

I'm off to Paihia tomorrow. Stay posted for pictures!

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