Hi Auckland!

I actually seem to have made my way all the way to Auckland! I’ve been here a week now and I still can’t quite believe it! I’ve been dreaming of New Zealand for so long now that it seems completely and utterly wild that I am now here! I’m actually heading out of the city again at the end of the week and I’m incredibly excited to move on.

If Bangkok was loud, chaotic and thoroughly stressed me out, Auckland seems to be doing the exact opposite. I have never felt more chilled out than I have in Auckland – which if you know me in real life, you would know that’s quite the feat. I am not a chill person by any stretch of the imagination. I am easily excitable and easily stressed. Yet, here, I’m just… calm. Maybe it’s because I’ve actually bloody made it and I still can’t quite get my head around the fact that New Zealand isn’t some wildly future plan but it’s here, it’s now.

Auckland skyline, including the apparently famous SkyTower

Whatever the reason – I love it. I arrived, and then proceeded to force myself to stay awake that first day to the point of absolute nonsensical insensibility. The poor Kiwi Expeirence man trying to get sense out of me… I forced myself to stay up, video chatting several family based in the UK (because I really miss them) and that was weird! It was the end of the day here, 2200 here and barely 1100 there! I know time zones are a thing and all, but it was still super weird to be saying good morning and goodnight at the same time! Its also strange not being able to just message my friends and my family throughout the day – because they’re asleep!

View from North Head, Devonport – look at the colour of the water!

Anyway. Been a chill few days. My first full day in Auckland and I find out Fleetwood Mac have a concert in Auckland and, even better, they have tickets! It was incredible! Such an amazing atmosphere, even if I only knew all the words to about four of the songs. Got my first band t-shirt as well. Given how I dropped quite a bit of money unexpectedly on the tickets, I had a lowkey day, investigating the local parks and the harbour. It was very relaxed.

The bandstand in Albert Square, Auckland CBD

The day after, I hopped on the local ferry, crossed the bay and went to the small Victorian village/region of Auckland called Devonport. I had several Totally Reasonable reasons for doing so. The First of my Totally Reasonable reasons was actually reasonable – there is a good view of the Auckland skyline from the top of the hill/extinct volcano there. And it was a good photo on a frankly gorgeous day.

The view from the top of Devonport

Honestly, I swear the water is bluer here, and the grass is actually greener (however, this may have more to do with the fact that I left England at the tail end of an unpredictable summer, and arrived in Auckland in Spring. But poetry).

Flowers near Mount Eden.

The second Totally Reasonable reason is Cheltenham Beach. I wasn’t going because I like going to the beach – oh no – I went because I know Cheltenham very well, and I wanted to be able to say “I travelled 11,000 miles to end up back in Cheltenham”. It was a good walking day. I only spent about $40 all in, which was awesome!

Cheltenham Beach

I have experienced my first hiccup though. I signed up to the IEP working holiday visa scheme, and I set up my bank account before arriving in the country. Today, however, I found out I couldn’t activate it until Wednesday which is the day I was meant to be leaving Auckland! Then I found out it wouldn’t be usable until Thursday afternoon. I had to book into my hostel and shuffle around my travel plans to accomodate this all. Lesson for you all – don’t rely on having money available instantly. I didn’t bring nearly enough cash to last in Auckland for more than a few days!

Sunset over the Devonport-Auckland ferry

Update: Stunning views from the top of Mount Eden – 10/10 would recommend, even if my legs and lungs want to know what they have done to upset me so much to make me do that walk. I do need to sort my fitness out.

There’s a crater at the top of Mount Eden – walking around the egde is incredible
It’s the highest point in Auckland – the views were spectacular!

I’ve added loads of other photos to the Auckland, New Zealand photogallery!

Off to eat crackers and read books – Bea

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