Fw: North to Doubtless Bay and Hihi Beach Holiday Park

Wed 3 May 2017 00:30

-----Original Message----- From: zoonie {CHANGE TO AT} mailasail {DOT} com
Sent: Wednesday, May 3, 2017 1:11 AM
To: zoonie {CHANGE TO AT} mailasail {DOT} com
Subject: Re: North to Doubtless Bay and Hihi Beach Holiday Park

Kiwis and anyone for Morepork?

Keri Keri is an up market little town and we strolled the centre street before enjoying coffee and hot chocolate at one of the many al fresco cafes. We were killing time as Lauren made her way from Wellington via Auckland to the little airstrip nearby grandly named the Bay of Islands Airport.

At a little settlement hamlet called Rewa’s Village we made a picnic in the camper and took it to a table by the pretty river with its historic stone store and Kemp House opposite and a natural stone weir creating a handy dam for the ducks and gulls to bathe in. This site is also where some of the first maoris settled hundreds of years back and now areas where they lived and worshipped are preserved and treated with respect. From here north there were many such early maori settlement sites and meeting halls, matae.

We made our way to the airport and enjoyed Lauren’s return so we could continue our adventures together. That afternoon we arrived at Hihi, a peninsula that wraps around Mangonui Harbour and has an ocean side and a sheltered side. We pitched our little tent in one of the most lovely holiday parks we had yet visited in all of NZ. Privately owned and run by a couple who wanted the best for everyone.

This beautiful seaside area was once the busy scene of the whaling and trading industry and in Cable Bay from 1902 to 1912 the Pacific Telegraph Cable Station linked Canada, Australia, Norfolk Island and NZ. We so loved the area and atmosphere we determined to return sometime during the next year and spend a few days exploring.

But now was the time for an afternoon on the beach. As Captain Cook sailed past here he was recorded to say, “That is Doubtless a Bay” and the name stuck. We were awaiting the sunset which had the promise of surreal beauty but before then we paddled, combed the beach, marvelled at the tiny chitons wedged into crevasses on the rocks and chatted to a local who was saving up for his own boat so he could go fishing.

Ruby took the photos of the sunset as we all sat on the beach wall. There was that atmosphere once again, small groups of people lost in the timeless wonder of the passage of celestial bodies passing in a constant orbit and perpetual motion linked in no way to man’s activities. None of it was lost on the children, they were as rapt as us adults.

During the night we lay awake listening to ear splitting screeching sounds and the owl like calls of what we identified as a pair of Morepork. The name is onomatopoeic and can be mimicked by blowing into cupped hands. But what of the screeching cries? Could they be kiwis? We knew there were kiwis around because of the road signs requesting caution at night.

We packed away the tent to the accompaniment of Tui birds and their delightful, quirky orchestra of tuneful sounds interspersed with clicks, rattles and wheezes. Their random choice of sounds meant they were always fun and interesting to hear.

The I Site at Kaitaia is brand new, so new that Gary’s sat nav took him on past it to the old building and we waited in the centre for them to find their way back. The lady confirmed that the sounds we had heard the night before were indeed wild kiwi, magic.

We clambered aboard the Sand Safari Coach mystified by the fact that they had no record of our booking the trip. I was mildly annoyed and looked forward to sorting the problem out when we arrived at the Kauri Kingdom where our bookings would be checked.

Fortunately there was plenty of room on the coach this time of year so we would not be disappointed but with only that day to spare for the trip I wanted some answers. The lady asked numerous annoying questions like “Are you sure you booked with us and not the ‘opposition’?”, and “Did you book for today?”

“Yes to both of those questions and I remember your accent, so it was with you that I booked.” That sorted that out and we were now ready to go.

From: zoonie {CHANGE TO AT} mailasail {DOT} com
Sent: Tuesday, May 2, 2017 2:03 AM
To: zoonie blog
Subject: North to Doubtless Bay and Hihi Beach Holiday Park