Tuesday 15 July 2014

New Plymouth, New Zealand: Stunning Mount Taranaki

This is the reason why I included New Plymouth in my NZ trip. I became Mount Taranaki's photographer during my stay in New Plymouth, trying to capture its glory from various angles. The above photos taken at a particular lake are my favourite. I was extremely lucky that there were no clouds surrounding the mountain so I managed see Mount Taranaki so clearly.

I couchsurfed with a retired couple who lives in a cosy little house near the city center. B drove me to the lake together with her grandchildren who were so cute! Especially the younger boy! He warmed up to me afterwards and played pirate ship with me aww. We sat down at the benches near the lake where the children ate their lunch and fed the ducks. I think I can sit there forever and just look at Mount Taranaki haha.

Then we went to a beach where the sand is black! I was quite fascinated. I think the black sand is due to the volcanic ash? I left them and continued walking down the beach to the white bridge. It was a wonderful stroll and everyone seemed so relaxed and happy.

As you can see, I am in love with this snow capped mountain haha.

Other things I did in New Plymouth include going for walks in the small forests around their house with B where I saw glow worms! I wanted to go see the glow worm caves but it wasn't along the way plus it was quite expensive so I skipped out on it. So I'm glad I saw them here, they resemble fireflies but their lights don't blink. I also went to the free zoo, it was a small zoo made for children. There were otters and they were lazying around the artificial pond, adorable. No kiwis though. I went to another park where there was a light festival going on, so the park was decorated prettily with Christmas lights and other colourful lighting. I also went to the museum and learned about volcanoes around New Zealand and their eruption history. They animated the volcanoes to be like giant monsters so it was quite interesting to watch. Mount Taranaki is the tallest volcano in NZ, some think that Mt Ruapehu is the tallest but it's on a 200m base so Taranaki is technically the tallest.

New Plymouth is the last stop on my trip around North Island in NZ. So I took a bus to Auckland airport at night and slept over at the airport for my flight at 6am. I couldn't really sleep and it was freezing, so I gulped down many cups of hot chocolate from McCafe.

Goodbye New Zealand, I will be back! :D

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