Monday, February 23, 2009


We got back this afternoon from a few days at Lake Taupo.

It all started when we couldn't get tickets to see Billy Connolly in Palmy because they had sold out. I did a quick search and discovered there were tickets left for the Taupo show so we decided to make a weekend of it.

We drove up on Saturday afternoon which was pretty rainy and miserable. We could hardly see the mountains from the Desert Road and then we got stuck in a bit of traffic due to an Iron Man contst which had people running from Turangi to Taupo (crazy people!). But we arrived in the end and checked in to our hotel about 10 minutes north of Taupo - the Bayview Wairekei Resort. The hotel was lovely. We went for a swim that afternoon and Graeme attempted to teach me to play squash (for those that don't know I am hugely unco-ordinated) which was heaps of fun! Then we had dinner at the resort cafe that night.

On Sunday morning we headed out to Huka Falls which were just down the road from the hotel. They were spectacular. We went for a walk up the track both ways but didn't go too far because I was not wearing "suitable" shoes. But we went just far enough away from the crowds and got some lovely photos. This photo was taken from the bridge right by the carpark so it was swarming with tourists!

We also went to the Honey Hive and took a drive down to the Prawn Farm (although we didn't go in) before heading to town for some lunch. We also managed to fit in another swim that afternoon before getting ready to go into town for dinner before Billy.
We miscalculated our time though and ended up only able to have starters for dinner because we needed to leave to get up to the Events Centre on time. (Yummy starters though - the most amazing onion rings and rosemary & feta pizza bread at Dixie Brown's - must go back some time to actually try their dessert cocktails!)

Then came the show which was fabulous. This was the second time we have seen Billy Connolly live (the first time being at the Clyde Auditorium in Glasgow in 2005 before we left for NZ) and he didn't disappoint. I had heard him tell some of the stories before (in DVDs, TV shows etc) but they were still funny and he added lots of other details in as well. I was also pleased that the zoom on our camera allowed me to take this shot...

He was definetly worth the money and the huge wait we had in the carpark when it came to leave!

This morning we visited the Craters of the Moon before leaving Taupo. It's a site of geothermal activity and involves a 45 minute walk around a site which has lots of steam and mud pools and 'craters'. It stunk of rotten eggs (due to the sulphur but thankfully it wasn't quite as bad as Rotorua!) but was worth a visit.

Then came the drive home (which normally takes about 3 hours) which was better today with no rain. We stopped in Taihape on the way back for coffee and cake and made it home for 3pm.

This afternoon we've been unpacking, sorting through the photos and got some food in (cupboards were empty!). And tomorrow it's back to work for both of us. After having 11 days off I think I may be inconsolable come tomorrow morning!

Hope you all had a good weekend too!

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