Te Araroa Trail – Day 12

Friday, November 10, 2023
Distance/ Total: 0 km / 0 mi

Today was a zero day for me in Paihia. I had bought a ticket for a 5 hour Bay of Islands cruise that started at 9:00 am.

I packed all my things including the bounce box to Auckland this morning and I could leave them in the office at the hostel. I was on my way to the wharf by 8:30 excited about the cruise.

We started boarding at 8:45 and left the dock at 9:00 am. The first stop on the tour was Motuarohia Island where Captain James Cook had an encounter with the Maori in 1769 that ended in a small battle. There was a nice lookout I walked up to where you could see the bays almost touching on both sides of the island. The ocean and cliffs below were fascinating.

Back on the boat we headed out to Cape Brett where the Cape Brett lighthouse stood as well as the “hole in the rock”. The captain of the boat circled around so we could all get a good view then drove the boat through the “hole in the rock”.

Heading back into the bay he spotted a seal swimming alongside the boat and pulled up near a rock which had another seal sunning on it.

The next stop was Otehei Island. This stop had a small cafe’ and a nice beach to enjoy for about an hour. I grabbed a beer and a brownie and sat on the edge of the beach enjoying the noonday sun.

Back on the boat it was a short trip back to dock in Paihia. I headed back to the hostel to pick up my gear and headed to the post office to ship out my bounce box. I then headed across town to the Bay of Islands Lodge to meet Lupi.

We met on the street down from the lodge and I got checked in. We ate lunch at the Lodge and waited for the other hikers to wander in through the afternoon.

As dinner time approached several of us went to Paihia Fish & Chips and enjoyed our food as we sat on the edge of the waterfront.

Back at the hostel we sat around until about 9:00 and then all headed to our bunks to rest up for the hike tomorrow.

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