Day 03 – Auckland to Maraetai

Motorbike/Motorcycle, New Zealand, Travel 2 Comments

It took us a lot of time to pack the bike for the first time. There were things we just couldn’t fit in (well, we could have made them fit, but there are some things we usually acquire along the way, so there was no point filling every last little spot). We did a little bit more shopping for some small things, and then we were off.

We decided to join a few friends who were going to camp at Maraetai (east of Auckland) for three nights. The place is called Omana Regional Park. We hadn’t booked, and were very luck to be able to get a place. The official capacity is 80 campers, and then the park manager has discretion over 20 more. Well, the park manager had used up 19 of those, so theoretically only one of us should be able to stay there. But they had pity on us (and it was only the first night that was overbooked).


It was Peter and Victorias’ wedding anniversary, so we had a cake to celebrate the occasion (the following photo was taken by Victoria’s brother Michael).


It was new year’s eve, and the full moon was absolutely beautiful.


Rebecca and I went to bed early. Surprisingly, little noise was made as midnight came around.

Day 02 – Auckland to Warkworth to Henderson return

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Elevation Profile

We decided to do a day trip and have a hot swim at the pools in Parakai. We set off at 11:30am, thinking that we would get to Warkworth around 12:00pm – how wrong we were. The traffic was diabolical on the new tollway bypassing the old Hibiscus Coast road. It was stop start traffic from the tunnel north. Even on a motorbike it was very slow going.

We passed this unique tree house along the way.


When we spotted a cafe by the side of the road, we decided to exit the almost non-moving traffic and have lunch.


This is the view from the cafe where we had lunch. As you can see, the traffic is very heavy – travelling at walking pace.


We took Woodcocks Road from just before Warkworth down towards Helensville, a road that is very enjoyable on a motorbike.

We arrived at Parakai mid afternoon, and were surprised by the entry cost to the hot pools. It cost $16 per adult, but they only have two very basic pools – one outdoor and one indoor. Compared with AC baths or De Bretts in Taupo, this is very expensive. AC Baths only charge $6.50 per adult, and have a sauna, steam room and many more facilities.

Day 01 – Around Auckland

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We spent our first day in Auckland by doing some shopping and getting prepared for our trip.

In the evening, we went to the Te Atatu Peninsula and had a picnic with our friends (Peter and Victoria) and their family. It was surprisingly cold for this time of the year.


After our dinner, Rebecca went for a canoe on the Waitemata Harbour with some of the others.


Day 00 – Trip Overview

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This trip represents almost 6,500km of travel around the North Island of New Zealand. The initial plan was to travel to all regions, but due to unforseen circumstances (which reduced our trip by about 1.5 weeks in duration), we didn’t end up travelling to the Coromandel, Northland, or Taranaki.

Some of the days were spent with family/friends, and may therefore not be relevant to all viewers.

The weather was very cold for this time of the year, and as we live in Papua New Guinea, we felt the cold more so than the locals. However, we were very fortunate that we never really ended up in great discomfort due to the rain. However, we did adjust our schedule a few times – we stayed in Taupo and extra night, because it was pouring the morning we wanted to leave, and we stayed in Gisbourne a few extra days.

If you are planning to tour New Zealand on a motorbike, I strongly encourage you! This is a wonderful country to tour. The roads are often windy, and the scenery is always stunning.

And remember – you can drill down on all the maps to see exactly which roads we travelled (although the map on this page has been compressed, due to the size of the full trip – over 90,000 track points).