15th Oct 

Packing up the tent in the rain isn’t fun, but not long after first light and without breakfast, we were heading back to the main road that would take us down to Waitangi.

Walking through the rain this morning was slow going and we became grumpy with each other such small things, but we are ok now.  Spent a great 3hours at Waitangi, visited the museum and went on the guided tours about the treaty of Waitangi.  I didn’t realize that there were battles with the British army back in the days with the Maoris.

Treaty of Waitangi, one of the documents (maybe a copy of the original)


We entered the complex where you had to pay, first question that you are asked was, where are you from? Naturally I said Christchurch and was then charged 20 dollars per person. People behind me said Sydney and was then charged 40 dollars each.  To me it seems expensive especially that it’s a national birth place of New Zealand and we celebrate it every year with a public holiday. 

The tour was really good, the rain clouds disappeared while we were there, so walking about on the well keeped gardens was a real pleasure. It’s hard to believe  that the treaty was signed back in 1840, such a young nation compared to other nations in the world.

The tour was very informative, but I couldn’t help my self thinking that the story we were being told of what happened back then was more one sided and  the British side of the story was being left out. But I’m not really sure as my knowledge of the history of the events is next to non existent.

The Maori meeting house that provided a entertaining performance

After spending a few hours at the Waitangi Treaty Grounds, we carried on along the road to to eventually arrive at Opua. At this point were had plans to catch a ferry or water taxi to get to Waikare, which by boat is a 11kms trip.

We arrived after a pleasant day walk along the bays walkway to only find out that we had to return three kms or so (one and a half hours walking) and camp at the Holiday Park. At which point, we would get a lift tomorrow morning along with seven other TA hikers to the start of the next track.

What a treat, we arrive at the holiday park and booked the last cabin, expensive but with clean white towels, hot shower and a kitchen, we were happy to pay.