Day 4 last day in Bay of Islands
The next morning we slept in until 8:00. When I went to pull my breakfast ingredients out of the fridge, I noticed that everything in it was warm; the switch that powers the refrigerator had been switched off. Our fish and leftover Thai food were now inedible. The plan for the day was to head to Russell to go to Long Beach, which Bob had told us was a good swimming beach. We took the ferry over ($24 round trip for 2 people) and then walked for about 30 min. to the beach.
When we got there, it was warm and sunny, and we got into the water and found out that it was much cooler than I had been expecting.
After an hour the sun completely disappeared behind a cloud bank and we didn’t know if it would come back. Marc was worried that it was going to rain, and suggested we walk from Long Beach to Waitata Bay. It was a 10 minute walk. This turned out to be a nudist beach, which the New Zealanders call a “naturist” beach (apparently this was on the sign at the trailhead, not that I noticed or would have known what that meant).
After swimming, we headed to town and had lunch at Sally’s, where we had had coffee and carrot cake the day before. Sadly, the lunch was not as good as the dessert. Marc had a burger and fries for $15, and I had a chicken/brie/caramelized onion panini with salad for $11. My sandwich had maybe 1 ounce of stringy chicken on it, and Marc said his burger was just okay.
We caught the 2:00 pm ferry back to Paihia, where the Thursday afternoon farmer’s market was in full swing. We ended up buying a huge calzone for $10, some cherry tomatoes for $3, and some macadamia nut mini tartlets (6 for $5).
Back at the hostel, we washed the saltwater off in the shower and then got ready to drive to Haruru Falls. They were a disappointment. The falls themselves were pretty, but what was behind them and below them (ugly buildings and ugly flora and fauna) was not so pretty. We’ve seen much lovelier falls in Hawaii. Then we drove to Keri Keri, which was also a bit of a disappointment. We had cappucini in a cafe and after that I stopped in a pharmacy to check the price of lip balm with SPF and sunscreen… Lip balm was $6 and sunscreen $15! I was shocked, but bought lip balm anyway and decided to wait on sunscreen since we weren’t out yet.
We came back to the hostel and stopped at Makanu Chocolate shop along the way back and bought some truffles.
At the hostel, I put the calzone we had bought at the farmer’s market into the oven. We ate it along with the salad greens and feta cheese. We finished off a bottle of $10 Sauvignon Blanc and sat out on the deck, enjoying the view. After dinner we packed our stuff and went to bed fairly early. The next day we had to be back in Auckland by noon to catch our 1:30 flight to Wellington.