AHH I loved Rotorua! It has a bad rep because the town smells like Sulfur.. I mean big time. New Zealand is so unique for a variety of reasons, this one in particular is the “thermal activity” seen throughout this area in the North Island. Throughout the town centre one can see steam rising along the horizons where there are these little mud pools (fenced off) with 100C+ temperatures produce a sulfur gas which is released making the town smell like someone has constantly just lit off a ginormous firecracker!
We spend about 10 days here. We camped in our tents most of the time. When Emma and I first arrived, it was forecasted to thunderstorm for about 48-72 hours so we splurged and got ourselves a hostel. This was nice bc we returned here the remaining days whenever we needed to take a shower! Haha we just snuck in and used the facilities. When you are camping for 3+ months, you learn to do what you gotta do.. and I have been quoted saying showering is “one of my favorite things in the world” so I can’t go too long without one! haha.
Also in Rotorua we visited some lakes as you can see below. We did an overnight hike to this one place called “Hot Water Beach” bc there was a stream of boiling water from below the ground that empties into this massive lake. Therefore, there are warm pockets where people wade in near where the hot river meets the lake. We fond it rather uncomfortable bc it was either kinda hot or WAY TOO HOT to even stand. I got burnt more than I relaxed.. As mentioned, it was an overnight hike which was my first time doing so! I loved it.. also, the next day when we hiked back to the car after camping, a HUGE wind and rain storm came through. One at first would think that hiking through this would suck.. but after you get soaking wet it stops really mattering. What was cool was being alone on this trail in the middle of the forest and seeing this storm unfold! Branches were falling and leaves were getting blown sideways across the trail. It was so cool to see nature unfold in an area so remote and in such an intimate setting.
Lastly, in our near two weeks in Rotorua, we visited a “Thermal Wonderland” which is shown beneath too. It is a tourist place to show all the thermal activity in the region. VERY cool stuff and worth every penny in my opinion! There are photos of this incredible place below as well!
Ahh, OK so the longer I am in the States the more and more I am missing New Zealand. It is such an incredible place with such an easy life. If only it wasn’t so damn secluded from everything else in the world! The reason I fell in love with NZ was the reason I ended up wanting to leave. Funny how what is attractive changes over time.
All in all.. New Zealand is the bomb.
Thanks for reading – This makes me want to get back into writing more again. I miss it.