Category Archives: Lower North Island

Getting Close to the Ferry

For our last night in Wellington before the ferry, we thought it would be sensible to get a bit closer to avoid the weekday traffic with our early check in being 7am at the Bluebridge terminal.

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The NZMCA App screamed out the Petone  Club as a good place to be and we cruised in the late morning to this massive park.

Petone Club

There’s plenty of room to park and they’re very obliging and helpful. They have a Buffet going for lunch and dinner and you’re very welcome in the bar. Just remember to take your NZMCA card with you.

Our parking.

The parking area is huge and all sealed. The power  is a bit awkward as it is all in a bunch of 4 plugs right next to the entrance to the Motorhome parking area so its throw your leads over the fence.

The entrance to the parking area. The power is on the gatepost outside.

Our lead was just long enough to reach but it all works and for $10 a night, a fantastic place to stop. There are also toilets and a shower that can be used too.

We went for walk down to the local Pak N Save for some basics, which is about 20 minutes walk away.

Later in the day, we invited our next door neighbours over for a drink. John and Margaret hail from Masterton and were staying in Wellington.  After a pleasant hour with them, we went into the Petone club for a spectacular tea for $9.50 each and a Sticky Date pudding.. Yum!  All washed down with a huge $7 glass of chardy.. also Yum!

Rafes Track to Petone

A nice spot. Onto the ferry next.

Some new China at the new park.

Some of our china plates that we bought  a few years ago in Oamaru that we use in Rafe, had deteriorated. Fiona had  managed to find some new ones the same sort and colour on Trade Me so on the way south, we had to pick these up in Porirua.

Fiona with some of her China

This time she got a Teapot, 6 of each, cups and saucers, small side plates, bigger side plates, bowls and dinner plates all for $190 !! ..

A panorama of the park when we arrived.

After getting the China, we headed straight for the new Plimmerton NZMCA park and it looks fantastic. There had been a working bee on ealier and it was pretty busy. I counted over 40 Buses and Motorhomes there.

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Fantastic new Dump Station

The new Dump Station looks great in the middle and its really handy to the Railway Station. A great spot.

We called our son Alex who is currently working in Wellington amnd he popped out for tea. The next morning, we got up early and caught the train into Wellington City. Its an easy walk from the park and only takes 25 minutes and then we walked around to a French cafe for brunch.

Alex met us at the cafe, then we went for a walk around the city. Very pleasant.,

You know you’re in Wellington when you see this.

Alex later dropped us off at Rafe in Plimmerton and stopped for a cup of coffee and then headed home.

When we left !

I’m impressed with this park and have to say, the crew here have done a great job with it. Fiona was keen to stay a third night but as I’d booked an early ferry during the week, I thought we might be better closer in for our last night with the early morning weekday traffic.

A nice park and I’m sure it is going to be well used and enjoyed by many.

Rafes Track to Plimmerton

South Island, here we come.

After spending our last night in Auckland with eldest son Drew and his partner Jenna in Milford, we set off in the morning, bound for Taupo.

Rafe and Ian and Lynda’s XLI

We were heading for Dianne and Gary’s home in Taupo to meet other fulltimimg Motorhome friends Ian and Lynda, who arrived earlier in their Dethleffs XLI.

Dianne and Fiona made a spectacular curry for us all and we had a lot of laughs and lots of fun.

Dianne picking the girls up for a tiki tour around Taupo

In the morning, we all went to a local Cafe and then for a look around Taupo.  Another great night with everyone and lots more laughs and Fiona and I were off to Rafe for the night. In the morning we caught up  briefly with everyone for a cup of tea and then we were off, heading further south.

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We stopped at the Army Museum in Waiouru for lunch which was great and then carried on to Mangaweka.

Rafe at the Mangaweka Campground

We stayed at a neat wee Campground in Mangaweka last Christmas with Gary and Dianne and its a fantastic place right by the river. The same people own another more upmarket Campground with a bar and eating area right over the bridge.

Look at those cliffs!

There is also an old Power Station just along the road with an old dam. Apparently Mangaweka was one of the first to have its own streetlights and electricity in the country, all driven by this local dam.

Fiona at the old Power station

At $7 a night each with power with our NZMCA discount, it is spectacularly “reasonably priced” but I understand the price with soon be $9 per night with no discount. .. Still very good value in a lovely spot.

Rafes track to the Mangaweka Camp