The road north from Kawhia was unsealed for the first segment. Bad weather had caused rock and mud slides in places which meant the road would narrow to a thin wedge. The road passed through some lovely native bush. We hit a diversion almost as soon as the road became sealed. Following the diversion signs we managed to get to our first stop of the day, the Bridal Veil Falls. The falls were lovely, a single spout of water pouring out over the rock and into a large pool beneath.
The sealed road continued the rest of the way to Raglan a town well known for it’s surf breaks. We were just heading into the town when a man stopped his van and beckoned us over. He told us to walk round the corner to the harbour, which we duly did to be rewarded by the sight of several orcas surfacing in the harbour. Some people were out in kayaks with the killer whales gently breaking the surface only metres away from them. We followed a pair further into the harbour, where many people were gathering. A woman told us that they appear once or twice a year, so we felt extremely lucky to have seen them.
The largest town of the Waikato region is Hamilton and this was our next stop. We bypassed the centre of town and made straight for the Hamilton Gardens. The gardens are a large and pretty park with various themed areas. We took a walk around the lake, ate lunch at the café and spent some time browsing the herb and vegetable gardens. I think Gemma enjoyed my game of ‘what’s this vegetable?’
With plenty of time on our hands we decided to call it a day and book into a holiday park in Hamilton.