More food and more hot pools

August 18, 2013 - Taupo, New Zealand

At the risk of turning this travel blog into a food blog, the highlights of Taupo centred around top food.
The tongario crossing is a famous volcano walk which is classed as one of the top ten walks in the world. Unfortunately for us, it was deemed too dangerous over the weekend we were in town because of bad weather. Our skydive was cancelled too :( It chucked it down for the two days we spent in Taupo and there was nothing to do except eat, drink and be merry. After a great night out, we found a brilliant little cafe for brunch, walked around the lake and returned for afternoon tea, before heading to the shops and buying ingredients to make fajitas for our little family of ten. Everyone mucked in and it was epic!
The other highlight was our trip to the hot springs- finally some real hot springs you can actually go in! The stream which comes down the mountain is red hot, then it meets with a cold river in the valley. Coming down the mountain are many little waterfalls spilling into hot pools. The further up the hill you go, the hotter the water. You can't put your head in though, if the water goes up your nostrils you'll get amoebic meningitis. I can't really get my head around that, but obviously followed the rules anyway.
After Taupo we headed out to Wellington. I was super excited for this, purely because I was staying with Jayne and Graham who are friends of my parents.
I had my own room with a double bed and electric blanket and a top dinner every night. Jayne took me to mount vic which is a great lookout point. Afterwards we headed over to the Weta Caves at Weta studio. I actively dislike Lord of the Rings and have avoided "Hobbiton", the set of the hobbit houses. However, this place was pretty cool. This is where all the special effects and costumforward made not only for The Lord of The Rings,  but Irobot, Avatar and. They have a shop which sells Lord of the Rings ornaments which are actually hand made by the people who make the set and costumes. Because of this, they charge $400 for a tiny little Frodo. Sorry Sanj, I don't love you that much. They were also showing a short film which explained how the company had grown into the leaders m in special effects and animation.
We later spent some time in the Te Papa museum which is the coolest museum I've ever been in. They have earthquake simulation rooms and loads of Maori artefacts. They also have a giant squid which is possibly the most disgusting thing I've ever seen. It has the largest eyes on record (literally the size of footballs) which are suspended in a liquid and aren't rigid so ripple and move. Yuk!
I went to bed that night before my last day full day in Wellington, oblivious to the excitement and chaos the following day would bring...

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