The Far North

I’m writing this from the small town of Kaitaia in ‘The Far North’. That’s what they call the top bit of North Island, and I think it’s partly why I was drawn to coming here – it sounds adventurous and a teeny bit dangerous. It did actually feel like we were driving to the end of the world as I took the long bus trip up here from Auckland. The highway hugged the coast for much of the journey and I wistfully passed many perfect golden beaches with relaxed bathers peppering the sand. However, my destination is ‘Ninety Mile Beach’ so  hopefully I will not be wanting for my own patch of sand. Although apparently it’s a bit of a misnomer, it’s more like Ninety Kilometre Beach – but still, with such mind-boggling distances, why quibble?

I’m currently making use of the free wi-fi in Kaitaia library – an incongruously flash and modern place within this sleepy town. Libraries seem to be popular hang-outs in NZ, for all ages – it could be the free wi-fi, or the fact that books are extortionate here, but Will had told me of this fact, and if Kaitaia is anything to go by then it’s certainly true. That pleases me greatly, especially considering the hammering UK libraries have had over the last few years. It’s good to know some countries place a deservedly high value on access to books.

Later the same day…

I am now safely ensconced in the aptly named ‘Endless Summer Lodge’, situated right at the southern end of Ninety Mile Beach. I arrived via the local bus from Kaitaia, having been befriended by all the local commuters, to glorious sunshine. The beach is right in front of the hostel and I dived straight into the sea for an evening swim – wonderful. The sand is so fine it squeaks and creaks like cornflour, and the sense of freedom I always get from being on a long, empty beach is multiplied, well, probably by ninety.

Pictures of the hostel and the start of Ninety Mile Beach across the road below (you can just make out the length of the beach curving round to the left):

Oh yes, and in case you were wondering, I made up the fact about sheep-related injuries yesterday. Which means that, yes, the longest place name in the world is for real. Some things you just can’t make up…

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One Response to The Far North

  1. Nadine says:

    Hey my love,

    it is so wonderful to be able to follow your adventures! Thanks for sharing them and keep it up – I promise I will buy the book if you decide to publish your blog in paper format! 🙂
    Went to DimT tonight (as we did last week) – I am not sure how that compares to pasta and pesto 🙂 You can also try brown rice mixed with pesto and then throw an egg in, so it will be pesto-egg-fried-rice. Yummy.

    Waiting for your next blog.

    Lots of love from the little Island
    N

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