Last month the Oh Waily kids and I went for a visit to their grandparents in Tauranga. On this trip I finally decided that we would do some day trips while we visited instead of spending most of the time locally.
To that end we headed to Rotorua for the day. We started with a gentle stroll along the lakefront, a run around in the lovely playground before refueling with morning tea in a local cafe. We reinforced our recognition of the Scaup from our visit to Nga Manu as there was a huge number of them floating around the jetty.
We then drove around to The Bath House, which now houses Rotorua’s museum. On the way we stopped and admired the beautiful waka on the lakefront. You can’t help but love the prow, can you?
Unfortunately I can’t show you any photographs of the wonderful inside of the Bath House building as you aren’t allowed to take any. But I can recommend a visit. It is a small museum, but it is very modern and very nicely presented. It was especially fun to see the restored and excavated sections of the original bath house stalls. It was even more fun when we got to walk under the building, hard hats and all, to see all the underground workings involved in “taking the cure”.
Then I took the kids to the top viewing platform, through the attic, looking out for the ghost all the way. It was a very nice experience all around.
After this we headed out to the Redwoods on the outskirts of Rotorua, stopping for a late lunch on the way. I’ve driven past this area so many times in the last three years and had no idea that this existed. What a waste!
So, we started by getting the kiddie’s questionnaire to encourage them to observe their surroundings and then set off for the short walk, Redwood Memorial Grove track. It’s two kilometres of mostly easy walking, and it takes you through some beautiful parts of the forest. Here’s a couple of photographs I took along the way.
And when we reached the end, we had to stop and say hello to the Redwood Family. Apparently one of them might have had a bit of a headache the day we visited. Maybe they’d spent all day trailing around after small people?
If you are visiting the central North Island, or just passing through, I can recommend visiting both the Bath House and the Redwoods. By the time we had visited these two spots we were pretty done for the day, with an hour and a bit drive each way from the Oh Waily grandparents’ house to bookend our day.
Following on from our successful trip to Rotorua, we headed out on one more day trip a little later in our stay, this time to a hidden valley just outside Taupo.