North Island, New Zealand   2018

Photos by Barbara Dahn, unless otherwise acknowledged.


The day after Barbara arrived from her home in Cazenovia (USA) we visited the Auckland museum. There we found an exhibition of nature photos, many taken with drones. One in particular caught my eye... Mermaid Pools, north of the Bay of Islands. We never visited the site, unfortunately. 
Photo by Lola Wright.





At Whangarei, one old quarry has been made into a public garden, while another has been made into an arts complex, with a gallery, shop, and studios.  My favourite artist was Sally Spicer.





The 'gardens' at the Abbey Caves Reserve are also very beautiful.


Native quail can be found in the larger gardens.


New Zealand artists are skilled at the use of corrugated iron.


And there are lots of houses made from corrugated iron.


Cows are a feature of New Zealand roads.


Some areas are 'out of bounds' to the public.


Softwood plantations are a HUGE industry in NZ. Even steep slopes are planted, and later harvesting brings both soil erosion and river wood debris, which later ends up on shores facing the prevailing SW winds.


Windswept sand dunes lie to the north of Hokianga Harbour, in the northwest. This area receives few visitors. Although the harbour is very large, it is little used now by larger boats. An information billboard refers to the harbour's role in early shipping days, noting: "of the hundreds of ships which have entered the harbour, only 26 have been lost". 

The entrance to the harbour is shallow, and the deep channel is constantly shifting.


Abandoned farm-workers' houses can be found throughout New Zealand. They are particularly common in the far northwest.


The "Four Sisters".  South of Hokianga Harbour lies a forest with a few very old kauri trees. The largest, Tane Mahuta, is said to be the fourth largest tree, by volume, in the world.  These trees are beautiful and impressive.


Signs at a T-intersection.  All roads lead to Russell.  Russell is the Bay of Islands' "boutique" village.


Whangamumu is a sheltered harbour a few miles east of the Bay of Islands.


Someone has gone to a lot of trouble to carve an image on this driftwood at Whangamumu Harbour.

I think this traditional pattern is known as 'nihotahiwha', loosely translated as "teeth of the dragon". As you can see, the pattern has been carved on a tree buried in the beach gravel.


The ruins of the old whaling station remain, surrounded by bush, at Whangamumu.


Urban murals are a great feature of many NZ towns and cities. This one depicts the effects of an earthquake. (Town of Bulls).


Below... the city of Wellington is the administrative capital of New Zealand (while Auckland is the largest city). Wellington lies beside the crater of what was once a huge volcano.