Monday, 17 October 2011

I made it, wooooo

Hi and welcome to my blog. Hopefully I will update it fairly regularly and there will not be too many spelling mistakes :)

So I did it I made it to New Zealand and have just completed my first week here. After all my talk for a year about coming over it is amazing to actually be in the country. So far I have tried to do a mix of job hunting and seeing New Zealand. The job hunting part does not seem to be moving very fast at the moment. I'm not too worried, yet, I’m sure this will change soon.

I arrived in Auckland on Saturday 8th Oct with my plan extending to a hostel booked for three days and that was it. Eeeek. To be honest when I got of the plane, after barely any sleep, all I wanted to curl up and cry. But after a quick pep talk to myself in the toilets I bounced back. I was in New Zealand this was a time to be happy not being a baby hiding in the airport toilets.

I arrived to the quarter finals taking place and Auckland buzzing with excitement, I met a great girl (Becky- English) in my room who had been in New Zealand for three months and showed me around and took me to the fan zone. Areas set up in cities around New Zealand where you can watch the rugby on a big screen. The buzz in the fan zones has even got me into Rugby. Although I did switch sides half way through supporting the French I don't think I am a very loyal fan if I do this, woops. I then had my first experience of a night out in New Zealand, good fun was had. Meeting lot's of new people. 

Watching England at the FanZone Auckland, 8th October

My next day I spent exploring Auckland and trying to recover from jet-lag and a hangover. Woops. I also figured it was about time I came up with a plan, at least for the rest of the week. I wanted to leave Auckland for a while as I was not getting a true feel for the city whilst the rugby was on. It is also ridiculously expensive at the moment so I was happy to leave it to the Rugby fans. 

My 5 day plan (I have decided not to plan to far ahead as I keep meeting people so this changes all the time.
Tue – Fri: Hire a car and check out areas of the North Island where possible jobs are or where I stand a chance of getting work. I have decided after talking to people I stand most chance in cities, as small towns would prefer the teachers to speak a little Maori.

Saturday: Over-lander train to Wellington

I had seen a school in an area called the Bay of Pleanty. So this was my first port of call. You may have heard of this area at the moment. This is the area that the ship has become wrecked on the reef. It was great to get out of the city and start to see New Zealand seeing some amazing countryside on my way to Tauranga I lovely little sea side town that is really worried about the effects the wreck is going to have on their summer this year. Fingers crossed it all gets sorted before the main tourist season starts.

On my first night in Tauranga I started chatting to some people who were planning on going to an area called Hot water beach the next day. I offered to drive if I could tag along and we could share the petrol. I am so glad I did as I had an amazing day driving up the beautiful coast to the Coramandal area and digging a hole in a beach with Charlie (British Guy) and Now (Japanese Girl)

Looking out onto Mercury Bay - 19th Oct

Hot water beach is a long beautiful beach located between Tairua and Whitianga. This beach is unique though because it has an underground river of hot water flowing underneath it in certain areas. Every day at two hours either side of low tide visitors flock to the usually deserted Hot Water Beach to find hot water bubbling through the golden sand. It was crazy when we first arrived as no one really knows what to do you just see lot's of people either stood on a hot spot waiting for the tide to go out so they could start to dig their own little thermal pool. A small people had started to dig, trying to stop the sea ruining their holes.

People looking for a hot spot.
I have never seen so many grown people excited about digging holes in sand. After about 30 minutes we finally found an area we thought might make a hot pool and began to dig. With a little bit of assistance from two other British guys (we kinda stole their hole, I don't think they were to bothered though, they just wanted to dig not sit in the warm water) we managed to create a lukewarm hot pool. We sat in it for 5 min and decided it was time for lunch, haha not really reaping the benefits of all our hard work. But boy I was ready for that steak sandwich :) 

Hot water Beach - 19th Oct

The drive back to Tauranaga was pretty amazing with me driving the steepest ,windiest road I have driven on. When catching a brief look at the view I got really excited, thinking my passengers would as-well but it seemed all their digging on the beach had worn them out and they were missing out on my scary driving and the view fast asleep. This took us over to the west coast of the Coramandel.  

From some point on the road trip

One of the bends on the steep hill, it really does not give the best sense of what it was like.

Whilst in the area I got chance to meet a member of staff at the school who seemed encouraging about finding work out, fingers crossed. I also started the process of living here a bit more permanently, getting a NZ number and bank account. A rather productive two days I felt :) I loved the Bay of Pleanty and Coramandel area and shall defiantly be going back during my time in New Zealand, hopefully in the summer and take full advantage of the beaches.

After leaving Tauranga I headed inland to Hamilton as I have seen a job in this area and wanted to check what the area was like. I was in the area for one day liking the area and the people but not fully sure if I would want to live around here. It has the benefit that it is central so easy to drive to many places. But after being by the sea for three days I think I would prefer this, although Hamilton would have more going on in the Winter. Hamilton is a smallish city about the size of Preston. It is land locked but has a stunning river running through it. It seemed to have a good mix of things happening during the day and at night. I went to a great open music night during my time there. On the Friday I wanted to go to some caves nearby but did not have enough time before heading back to Auckland to drop off my car. I am certainly getting a huge list of things I want to do whilst in New Zealand, but hey there is no rush I have two years.

Hamilton - Waikato River

Hamilton Gardens

Hamilon Gardens

Earlier in the week I had decided to go get the over-lander train to the south of the North Island and see what Wellington is like and decide if I wanted to make this my base. The over-lander train took 12 hours and was unlike any train I have got before. You have a running commentary throughout the train ride explaining the area. It has a viewing platform and lounge area, very comfortable. It gave me a chance to see the North Island whilst getting from one end to the other fairly quickly. 

Pictures from the train, I took so many it was really hard to choose.

Argh windy....

So that was my first week. In a rather rambling way. Hope you enjoyed reading.

It is a beautiful day outside and my fingers are getting bored of typing. So I shall love and leave you all. Till next time.

Katie :)


  1. frikkin hell it looks amazing! p.s how much have you managed in one week alone!

    the hole digging thermal beach sounds amazing I've never heard of anything like it! Loving your blog can't wait to see what you get up too next!

  2. oo i found your blog, very good. i bet Britain feels like an age ago seen as you've been up to sooo much.


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