Paihia. We. LOVE. this. place.
Waitangai Treaty Grounds-this is where it all started. The Maoris signed a treaty with the Queen of England here and New Zealand was born. Interesting Fact of the Day: Maoris are the only people to sign a treaty of this nature with the British Crown. They refused to be subjects to the Queen which led to a treaty.
I was prepared to pay to get into the treaty grounds. Little did I know, New Zealand residents get in for free!! Foreigners pay $25 buckaroos!! It was a good day to be a New Zealand resident (see sign below).
notable sites at Waitangi-flagpole marking the signing of the Treaty
Kayak at Paihia-this one is a Jars tradition. Our very last activity before leaving was to kayak. We hired a double kayak and ended up rowing around a pretty sizeable island. Let's be honest, my weakling arms did minimal work. Jason saved us from a potential man over board, rough current, and a possible capsize from hidden rocks. Good job sailor. I loved every second of it. Mostly, I love the picture below because it looks like Jason is an enthusiastic tour guide.
Hole in the Rock via The Excitor-Jason's pick. It doesn't sound too exciting but it was worth every penny. We got all suited up and buckled up for a ridiculously fast ride out to the famous Hole in the Rock by jet boat going 55 knots. At several points I thought I was going to lose my lunch, camera, or my husband due to the very bumpy ride on the waves. Hole in the Rock is yet another example of why New Zealand is freaking amazing. Need I say more? The pictures speak for themselves.
Random Breakfast at Waitangi- Our last day in Paihia I insisted that we take a picnic breakfast and enjoy it on of the many scenic spots. We opted for hole 9 of the Waitangi golf course. I would just like you to know that I had Vogel Museli with freshly sliced New Zealand strawberries and vanilla soy milk. Jason enjoyed Honey Poppas. Yes, Honey Poppas. I don't understand it completely but many words on signs, boxes, advertisements are purposely spelled incorrectly. If a New Zealander were to pronounce the cereal Honey Poppers they would say Honey Poppas. I guess that's why they spell it phonemically? Other phonemic favorites I've spotted are Supa and Soba (super and sober).
and a Christmas season bonus for you...
Pohutukawa blossoms are in full bloom!!! That's how we know it's Christmas time down here in the South Pacific.