Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Final Stop, Beautiful Bay of Islands

Our last stop was the Bay of Islands.  This time I decided I would see the Kauri forest and Glow Worm Cave.  Yes, you heard me right!

Once again it was a tender to shore but this guy looked like he was asking directions!  It was significantly further than our other tender.

We stopped briefly to see New Zealand's oldest stone house and oldest wooden house.

One again the Maori are well represented on this island and this was the entrance to their meeting house.

I saw the Mangianagina Forest which was very beautiful.  We took a lovely forest walk through these wonderful silver fern trees.  Their leaves look silver at night.

Then it was the giant Kauri which are the second largest trees in the world behind the mighty sequoia.  They have been destroyed by poachers seeking the gum for use as turpentine and other products.

This fern is the national emblem of New Zealand.

After leaving the forest we made a rest stop at the funkiest bathroom I have ever seen.  It was designed by an Austrian architect who was probably run out of Austria!!  Once again the art freaked me out.

This was the view from my seat!

Then it was off to the glow worm cave.

No pictures were allowed except at the entrance.

It was a fascinating experience.  Stalactites and stalagmites everywhere and when the lights went out the glow worms  flashed on and off all over the ceiling.  I have never seen anything like it.  They flash to attract bugs to eat and stay lit if looking to mate.

On the way out we were shown some of the actual worms but again no photographs.

We did get to take a picture of this asteroid supposedly found nearby.

The Bay of Islands was a beautiful last stop as we say adieu to New Zealand.

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