178. Kiwis on the Beach

Kiwis on the Beach: With one full day in Auckland to shake the intercontinental jet lag, we bought a sack of kiwi fruit from the Countdown Foodmarket and picked a random day trip in the Hauraki Gulf, reachable via the spider’s web of ferry routes departing from downtown. Where we landed was a delightful little island called Motuihe, ringed with sand and sailboats and water as cold and clear as any Oregon alpine lake. I swam (rather, gasped), we inhaled spectacular fresh golden kiwi fruit and then dozed in a cove shaded by strong stand of norfolk pines. As promised, the sun is incredibly hot on the skin here so we worked a stop at the floppy hat and swimsuit shop into our morning commute. Nothing really says “vacation” like ducking into a sketchy bathroom somewhere to rip the price tag off of and change into some clearance sale swim trunks.

Back on the mainland for dinner, the office towers are looming a little too large over us. We’re ready to ease into some of that famous middle earth scenery, so tomorrow we’ll gather our rental car and start a short tour of the pretty but passable north island, a kind of striptease leading up to the main attractions of the south island. This island though, she’s no plain and tall. All dressed in green and jeweled with hot springs and Indian takeout shops, we’re eager to see a little more before we join the throngs of south island apostles who say, “The north is nice, but the south? Well you’ll see.” Soon enough.

More photos from sunny Motuihe island:


  1. Debra Hornbecker says:

    I want to see a photo of a kiwi bird!