After a day off exploring Christchurch, playing scrabble and hanging out at Alec and Alison’s, we headed to the airport to pick up our Camper Van. There was a bit of faff as Jim figured out how to drive an automatic, then we were off! Covering 4 days worth of riding in one, we sped northwards.

We enjoyed 3 days of luxury, being able to carry loads of food and water, camp at the free campsites and take big detours. We camped at some lovely sites where we could have afternoon and morning swims and spend the evening stargazing. And we checked out the North island’s east coast which we had missed on our way down.

It’s been incredibly hot and sunny here, which was fine in the van but not so great once we were back on the bikes.

After dropping the camper off at the airport, it was back on the bikes. And we cycled into central Auckland to pick up some new cassettes before taking advantage of some of Aukland’s many cycle trails to get out to Massey and Mark and Moira’s (W.S) house. We have arranged quite a few warm showers for our last week in NZ, it’s our last chance to get some kiwi hospitality!

From Aukland we headed north up the west coast, across some very hilly countryside. It was just constant up and down, but pretty lovely scenery and the coast was beautiful. We have needed frequent shade stops during this heat wave. We stayed with Jason (W. S) and enjoyed a swim in the school pool and a an evening of nerf gun wars.

Then we had a few long days, crossing over to the east coast and riding up to Whangarei. The east coast was also awsome, lots of gorgeous beaches and loads more hills. And we enjoyed a nice evening chatting with Stephen and Connie (W.S).





Jim’s words – Museum, Camper Van, Volcano, Driving, Aukland, Silent and Long.