We started our first day in Paihia with a 5km walk through the forest to the Haruru Falls. We had booked a dolphin spotting boat trip around the bay for the afternoon, and hadn’t quite left enough time to finish the walk and get back to the town centre, so we had to improvise a little! Kate managed to flag down a car and we hitchhiked the last 3km with a local councillor.
The boat ride around some of the 140 islands in the bay became more of an Orka watching trip, as a large number of the killer whales were passing through the area, which is apparently quite rare. Unfortunately that meant we couldn’t see any bottlenose dolphin, but there should be plenty more opportunities as we head towards the South Island. The relatively famous ‘hole in the rock’ was quite impressive, not least because of the boat captain’s skill in sailing through it.
We don’t plan to eat out much while we’re here, but we decided to treat ourselves to an Indian at Green’s, and had plenty of food leftover for the next night!