Sunday, November 20, 2016

Running away to Rotorua

A couple of fellow Australian miniaturists planned to spend the Sunday of the NZAME convention going on a road trip to Rotorua, and invited me along (especially after I happened to mention that I used to live there).
Boatsheds across a river.
Suddenly I was the tour guide for the day: even when I explained that 'used to live there' was over 45 years ago...

So, after racking my brains for suitable activities, I started our day with a visit Te Puia, which would give us a Māori cultural experience at a marae, a walk through a geothermal valley so we could see geysers and mud pools, a visit to the Maori carving and weaving schools, and (if we were lucky) a glimpse of a live kiwi.
Maori carving at the edge of a path through the bush.
The last time I'd visited was way back in 1985, and I was looking forward to seeing it again.
Close up of a maori carving of a face, painted in red and green.
Close up of a maori carving of a face.


Close up of a maori carving of a face.
Close up of a maori carving of a face.
First on our agenda was the marae visit and concert:
Marae visit Marae visit
Followed by a guided tour down through the bush
New Zealand bush.
to visit the geysers
New Zealand bush with a geyser in the distance.
Thermal area in New Zealand bush.
Geyser in a thermal area.
Geyser Geyser Thermal area
Geyser in a thermal area.
Man sitting on a railing of a bridge, watching tourists taking photos of a geyser.
We then stopped at the mud pools, where our guide explained how the mud is used:
Mud pools
We visited the kiwi house, but peer as we might into the darkened bush, there was no sign of our feathered friend...

Before we left Te Puia, we popped into the carving school to watch some students working on a carving,
Man working on a maori carving.
A maori carving in progress.
and to the weaving school.
Maori grass skirt with the words 'Kia ora Te Puia' woven into it.
One of our group had said she'd like to visit the lake shore, so I took the chance to swing us by the old bath house building (now the Rotorua Museum).
Large elizabethan-style building.
Large elizabethan-style building.
Corner of a large elizabethan-style building.
Doorway of a large elizabethan-style building.
Large statue at the foot of a curved staircase.
Large statue at the foot of a curved staircase.
We didn't have time to stay long, as we were due back in Tauranga for convention dinner. Before we left town, though, we drove along the lake front to Ohinemutu, and St Faith's Church (where I'd been baptised).
Front of a mock-tudor style wooden church.
Alas, the church was already closed for the day, so we weren't able to go inside. Instead we wandered around the outside, admiring the architecture
Front of a mock-tudor style wooden church.


Front of a mock-tudor style wooden church.
Back of a mock-tudor style wooden church.
(including the feature window of Jesus wearing a maori cloak. From inside the church it looks like he's walking on the lake...)
Detail of a window feature in a church, showing Jesus dressed in a maori cloak.
and the view across the lake.
View over a lake, with a yellow bench on the left side.
View over a lake.
View over a lake, with a geothermal outlet pipe in the foreground.
Want to join me?
At the edge of Lake Rotorua, by St Faith's Church
Finally, here's a video I took of some of the geothermal activity, showing how hot the water is:
Thermal activity at Ohinemutu
No wonder that, when I lived in Rotorua when I was three, I refused to swim in the lake unless Dad had poured a bucket of water in it to cool it down first!

4 comments :

Veronique Blommaart said...

Oh this brings me back to my backpacking trip to New Zealand back in 1990. Another life. Sweet memory!

Veronique Blommaart said...

Oh this brings me back to my backpacking trip to New Zealand back in 1990. Another life. Sweet memory!

Jodi Hippler said...

Just incredible... all of it! This is the trip of a lifetime!

Susan@minicrochetmad said...

Wow! Thanks for the tour, loved it, brought back memories, even the smell! It hasn't changed in 40 years since I was there last.