This was my first time to Bay of Islands in New Zealand and it was beautiful. The countryside reminded me a little of the UK, as it was very green with rolling hills, but with warmer weather! The day started off cool, then it warmed up.
While I was in the Bay of Islands I needed to see the natural wonder, the Kawiti Glow Worm Cave which was a magical cave with thousands of glow worms that lights the ceiling of the cave. Just tiny green/white lights the size of matchstick heads.
The limestone cave itself was spectacular with a formation of the stalactites and stalagmites. You had to watch your head when walking past as some of them came down quite low.
We were taken on a guided tour of the cave, this is the only way to visit. There was a guide at the front and back with torches and some more torches were distributed through the group as the cave is completely dark to protect the glow worms, it was cold inside too.
Also, you could not use your camera while inside, so my photos are of the entrance of the cave (if you go on their website you can see a photo of what it looks like inside (http://www.kawiticaves.co.nz/).
The story of the of how the cave was found in the 17th century was funny (how true, who knows), a woman was living in it & was stealing sweet potatoes from the farm next to the cave. The farmers were wondering where some of the potatoes were going, until one day they saw smoke coming from the entrance of the cave and that is how it was discovered.
While you wait for your guided tour you can have a walk around the small rain forest next to the cave. Wear comfortable shoes and bring a light jacket for inside the cave.
We then drove to Kawakawa, a small town for a quick stop and there they had an impressive toilet that was more of a work of art, very colourful with glass bottles. I didn’t take a selfie on the loo!
Then we continued our drive to Puketi Forest, which was a lush rain forest with lots of old tall trees. It is easy to walk through as the broad walk was built for Queen Elizabeth II, that visited 25 years ago. We had a guide that told us about each tree! It was very nice to walk through.
Then back on the bus to take us back to the ship, we made one last stop to see the Oldest Stone House built in 1880. The drive was beautiful country side, lots of dairy farms, so we saw a lot of cows, hills and trees.
The Bay of Islands had it all, beaches and countryside and nice small towns to walk around. Hope to return one day.
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Love Lucy x