Tag Archives: Nice Rest areas

The Busiest Bay around

While we were looking around Bowentown, we stumbled on Anzac Bay. What a great spot and I can now understand why it has had so many issues with Freedom Camping.  It seems now to be well managed but so busy, you’d need to get there really early to have any chance of getting an overnight spot.

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No room at the Inn
No room at the Inn
Great view
Great view

The water literally sparkles and its a really protected safe beach for the kids too. Waterskiing and jet skiers were having fun there too.

We were just stopping to have lunch but within minutes of arriving, I was chatting quite happily to my next door neighbor from Auckland and his friends in a matching Auto Sleeper. They had met as a result of buying the same vehicle 4 or so years ago and were travelling together. Nice people.

Busy busy
Busy busy

After a few sammies and a cuppa, we went for a wander down to the beach and to check out some of the Motorhomes in the overnight area. Some were pretty close together but they all seemed happy with the setup. It was chocker and it was a Sunday too.

Check out that water
Check out that water

A lovely bay and if I get there early enough one day, I might try a night there.

The Birds

I didn’t ever think I’d ever become a birdwatcher but when you sit down and watch them, its crazy how clever they are and what they get up to.

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A quiet day at Rays Rest
A quiet day at Rays Rest

I’d popped in to one of my favorite spots on the Firth of Thames, Rays Rest. I’ve done a couple of posts on Rays Rest over the last year or so and although I haven’t been here for a while, it is one of my all time favorite places to stay.
Its not popular with Fiona but I suspect that’s because there are no shops there or “anything to do” but that’s its charm. 🙂  Your choices are to Blob and to Blob.. just great.

Rays RestIt wasn’t particularly busy being a Wednesday afternoon but stinking hot.
The birds were amazing as just before the tide turned, they’re were all quite happily sitting on the sand banks and then it was like someone had blown the whistle. They were off to spread themselves out along the edge of the water for a feed and then follow the water as the tide went out. Its amazing just watching them following the water.

The weather was due to change and pour with rain. No problem here as it is all well draining sand. There is always a friendly face here too and its amazing who you meet.

The local horses came down for a swim too
The local horses came down for a swim too

I also did a Netspeed speed test here and was amazed it was so good given that it is a rural area and quite remote. See below.

Download: 41.19 Mbps
Upload: 24.30 Mbps
Ping: 54 ms

Rafes Tracker map is below for its location.

Rafes Tracking map
Rafes Tracking map for the trip back to Akld

The Roller Coaster to Napier

We set off around 10am to different parts of Taupo.

Rob, Helen and Chloe had to visit the dump station and water, we needed fuel and Gary and Dianne had to pop in briefly to see old friends on the way out. We were meeting at De Brett’s on the Napier road out where we later met and we were under way.

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The convoy in the car park
The convoy in the car park

The road was in good shape and there really wasn’t much traffic to speak of. We were planning to stop at the Tarawera Cafe where there used to be a pub. You can also stay the night there as well with your CSC Motorhome.

How the Hotel was
How the Hotel was

Its interesting on a windy road how hard it gets to try and get people to overtake you. They travel along half way up your backside and when there’s an opportunity to pass and you move over for them, they sit tight. There was one car that followed Gary first and them came up behind me. It didn’t matter how easy I was making it, the bugger wouldn’t  move on !

It was good to get to Tarawera Cafe and have a nosey around and I was really looking forward to the coffee at that stage. The really windy and up and down stuff was still to come on the road.

After half an hour or so we set off.. All very uneventful and again I was pleasantly surprised how little traffic there was.

We arrived in Napier early in the afternoon and after a quick trip to the supermarket, we headed to one our favourite spots at Clifton Beach.  Its just such a nice spot here and we keep coming back. We had a great night having a few glasses of the wet stuff and a meal out in the sun.  A great day..

Clifton

The Tracker image to Clifton Beach
The Tracker image to Clifton Beach

We love our Viseo

As B&Brs from Waiheke and being in the hospitality business, Brian and Carol were ready to explore NZ in their 7m A Class Burstner Viseo . They’ve sold the House at Waiheke and now moved north.

Don’t forget to click on the images for Hi Res

Carol and Brian with their Burstner
Carol and Brian with their Burstner

I bumped into them at Rays Rest during a cup of tea and lunch stop as we swapped notes with their Burstner and Rafe. Both Dethleffs and Burstner are owned by the Hymer group in Germany and although they’re quite different, there are a few similarities.

The Living space
The Living space
The Galley
The Galley

They bought their Viseo from a dealer in Taupo in 2011 before the current importer was dealing with them.  It has a 3l Fiat motor with a manual gearbox and plenty of room. Having a solar panel and LED lights makes it really easy to enjoy their freedom camping and the NZMCA parks which they’re really keen on.

They previously had a Mitzi Canter which they had had since 2005.

A great view
A great view

They’ve been all over the country in it several times and are thrilled with it. The favorite place was Lake Tekapo. .. I think Rays Rest is pretty good too 🙂

By the pools parking

In Rotorua recently, I discovered by accident almost, the amazing new free overnight parking put in as part of the Motorhome Friendly towns scheme and by the Rotorua Council.

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Great Parking
Great Parking

What a great spot right in the middle of town really and in the Gardens area by the Polynesian Pools complex.

Although it’s essentially a modified carpark, it has been done really nicely with the sculpture garden next door and surrounded by pools.

The view from the park
The view from the park

Well done Rotorua Council and I bet it’ll be well used by Motorhomers.

Mangaokewa Gorge

A years ago or so,  we found this spot and stayed here with our friends Rob, Helen and Chloe. With high cliffs all around with a river running through the middle, it’s an amazing spot. When we were there with Rob, Helen and Chloe in our way south. it was a bit warmer and there were people swimming in the river, a lovely spot.

The River
The River

There is a swing bridge which takes you leads you along the valley for some great walks up into into the bush into the valley.
Mangaokewa GorgePlenty of level parking, picnic tables, Barbeques, swings and slides and some loos too. The best part of all this is that you can stay for free overnight as long as you have that Blue Sticker of Self Containment.

The Viaduct
The Viaduct

As you enter the park, you pass under the main trunk railway on a massive viaduct.

I just popped in for a look and to do a Internet speed test and get some photos but while I was there a train went through. You can hear it but being a couple of hills away, only just. To get there, head south out of Te Kuiti towards Bennydale and it’s a few K’s on the left. A nice spot to stay if you’re heading through that way.

The Netspeed Internet Speedtest
Test Date: 14/08/2016 2:30 PM
Download: 7.31 Mbps
Upload: 0.73 Mbps
Ping: 57 ms
Server: Christchurch

Lunch and Coffee at Kaiwaka

We were on our way back to Auckland and were looking for somewhere to stop for lunch on the way.  Rob, Helen and Chloe were about 5 minutes behind us as we came down from the Brynderwyn Hills so the pressure was on.. finding somewhere!

kaiwakaJust before we came into Kaiwaka, Fiona spotted a nice little rest area off to the right. It was after the Motel complex but before the bridge into Kaiwaka.  We were too far past it to turn so we went into Kaiwaka to turn around and went back to it.

Just as we were turning into it, we spotted the Tracker coming down the hill ahead of us so they knew where we were.

The Tracker and Rafe
The Tracker and Rafe

We settled down in a dry hard area and got ready for lunch.

kaiwakaThere is a picnic table there and its all beside what looks like a tributary river to the Kaipara Harbour.

The river to the Kaipara
The river to the Kaipara

A nice wee spot and in a handy position. There is a bit of a hump at the entrance so for those with a big overhang, a diagonal crossing is wise. If you’re travelling north, Just after the bridge on the left before you get to the Motel complex.