I have cut a video of my time in Malaysia below. I began in Kuala Lumpur, then visited Batu Caves (a worshipping ground for Buddhists), moved on to Taman Negara (the oldest rainforest in the world) and finished up in the Perhentian Islands, which are as close to paradise as I could find. Penang is the only place I missed and will one day go back so I can experience it. I hear the food in Penang is incredible!
To save money for our remaining few weeks in New Zealand, we moved out of our flat and into a motel. I managed to find a room for $54 per night, as the stay was 20 days long. It was roughly the same price per week ($375) as our flat, and we didn’t have to pay for water or electricity. The down sides were a smaller space and only 200MB of WiFi per day.
As a man that was raised to eat anything and everything, I’m not exactly a food connoisseur. I enjoy too much food to ever be an acclaimed critic. However I love Indian food and was therefore really happy to be invited to review Indian Delights in Taupo.
This 100 seater authentic and fully licensed establishment comes advertised as having a “Million Dollar Lake View”. That’s quite a claim. They are open for lunch between 11am and 2pm so I popped in during my day in the area.
Most of us know that going to Taupo involves seeing Lake Taupo, with a side of skydiving or bungy jumping. I only had a day here, so I had to plan carefully and decide what my priorities were and decide what to do in Taupo.
I was heading South from Rotorua last Sunday, after an epic weekend of fun which you can read about here. As you come towards Taupo from the North there are some nice spots to take in, so I organised to stop at Aratiatia Dam, Huka Falls and finally, Lake Taupo.
We weren’t sure what to expect when reviewing Tamaki Maori Village. According to TripAdvisor this place is the bees knees, and is ranked 2nd on ‘Things To Do in Rotorua’ at time of print. We’ll be the judges of that thank you! Tamaki Maori Village all began with two brothers having an idea many moons ago, and is now a fully functioning pre-European Maori village.
After hearing good things about Agroventures Adventure Park in Rotorua, we were delighted at being invited to review it. We arrived around lunchtime on a Saturday in May, and we were very surprised to find the place almost empty. Agroventures offer 5 different “extreme” activities, and they are all unaffected by weather, so not going because it’s raining seems daft to me. Having the park almost to yourselves is fun though, as we could pick and choose what activities to do without considering queues.
As we arrived we were welcomed by a happy receptionist that signed us in and gave us our wristbands. The bands were marked 4 times, which means we can do 4 of the activities once. We qualified for the Shweeb, Swoop, Freefall Xtreme and Agrojet. The bungy jump is ticketed separately, and we opted to leave that one out. The friendly staff member gave us a run through of which way we should go for all the activities, and even recommended an order for us. We decided to do the Shweeb first, as this is the world’s only commercial Shweeb. Basically it’s an upside down monorail powered like a bicycle.
Situated on the outskirts of Rotorua lies Rotorua Hideaway Lodge. This aptly named set of 10 quiet, self contained units is tucked away from civilisation by a row of large trees. When we had the opportunity to review this place we were both very excited, and Rotorua Hideaway Lodge didn’t disappoint.
We arrived slightly later than scheduled, around 4.30pm, and were met with a gravel driveway that bends around the aforementioned trees. On the drive in, there are some dolls dressed as humans, surf boarding, playing rugby and cycling. They are a nice touch. Mannequins aside, the first noticeable feature about Rotorua Hideaway Lodge is the peacefulness. They have 4 acres of gorgeous land and the only sounds are those of nature.
I had the chance to review Pure Dirt Tours in Rotorua, and having never ridden anything except a moped, I jumped at the chance!
As you arrive there is a Portakabin that doubles as the office, then what looked like a cleaning/storing shed next to it full of dirt bikes. I arrived in the afternoon and it was very quiet around, despite being close to the main road. I met the owner Merv and his employee Matt. Matt explained what the biking would entail, and he asked questions about my abilities. I struggle with balance on a bicycle so was a little nervous! Continue reading “Pure Dirt Tours Review”
Finding things to do in Rotorua is not difficult once you are there, but knowing which Rotorua attractions to go and see can make for daunting planning. Do I head for the geothermal mud pools, or do I embrace the adventure of a zorbing activity? I have collated all of the best things to do in Rotorua for you in this post. Continue reading “Things To Do In Rotorua”
I went to Hot Water Beach during Easter weekend. It is found in the Coromandel Peninsula on New Zealand’s North Island. It is often voted one of the top 10 beaches in the world.
I had heard good things, about beachgoers digging holes and the hole then filling with really hot water so that they have their very own jacuzzi on the beach. It has something to do with geothermal springs under the surface heating the water. When my parents visited in January they said that the water was too hot and they had to use seawater to cool it down. That’s saying something, because my Dad doesn’t bother with the cold tap when having a bath. I wanted to find out for myself how hot is was.
Nothing processed, nothing cooked. Fruit, nuts, vegetables and legumes, whatever the hell they are. That means no beer. This is not going to end well.
My parents and I travelled up to the beach resort of Paihia, Bay of Islands for the last weekend in January. They had just flown in from Christchurch after spending 4 nights at Arrowsmith Lodge, which is a totally isolated private lodging, complete with its very own private lake. How posh.
I was great to reunite with my parents after our joint trip to the South Island. I met them at Auckland airport around 2pm and we headed straight up the highway towards the Northlands. It took us under 3 hours, which is pretty good for a Friday afternoon. The drive up is lovely too, just like the majority of drives in New Zealand.