Last week I told you all about our day at Hobbiton. We only spent two full days in Auckland, so we wanted to make the most of it. The second day we decided to take the ferry to Rangitoto Island. Rangitoto is a volcanic island that was formed by a series of eruptions.
Our AirBnB looked over the harbour, so it was only a quick 10 minute stroll down to the ferry terminal that morning. We took the first ferry out that morning. The ride was pretty smooth and the views were gorgeous as we pulled away from the mainland.
Half an hour later we pulled up to Rangitoto. The island is only 5.5km and does not have any stores or residences on it, so make sure you bring a long your own water and food. The weather was quite brisk but still sunny luckily since the original forecast called for rain.
There was a group leading tours on the island but we chose to go the self guided route. We read a few of the informational signs by the jetty before setting off to do the 1.5 mile summit hike.
The walk starts off going through lots of volcanic rocks which was really cool to see. Then it turned into more of a bush walk. Every so often we would stop and admire the beautiful views of the Auckland skyline. That cool looking sky tower you see was right in front of our apartment, so it was fun to keep seeing it and knowing we could see our AirBnB from the island.
It took about an hour to reach the summit with baby on board and a nine year old. The summit has a nice, large deck with benches so it is the perfect spot to hang out and eat your lunch. There are 360 degree views from the deck that are just stunning.
One side you are looking over Auckland and the other side is rolling, green hills. After taking lots of pictures and admiring the views, we set up shop to enjoy our lunches we picked up at the bakery on the way to the ferry.
I kept trying to take pictures of Leighton but she just wanted to cheers my lens!
After our picnic we started the hike back down. We decided to check out the lava caves on the way down. They were pretty dark and narrow, so Leighton and I waited behind while Sandy and Dylan checked them out.
As we descended, it started to sprinkle a bit but luckily all of the trees kept us pretty dry. When we got to the jetty we were greeted by a beautiful rainbow. I swear New Zealand is the rainbow capital.
That evening we enjoyed a pre-birthday dinner for Sandy, who was turning 60 the next day. After dinner I was able to sneak away to meet up with a high school friends who lives in Auckland (ps she is extremely talented- check out her etsy shop!) for some kid free wines. When I got back to the apartment, Dylan was waiting up for me so we could decorate for our sneaky birthday surprise (we had secretly bought the decorations the day before).
Sandy was very surprised the next morning to wake up to our decor. We had a low key last day enjoying a big brunch and checking out a different neighborhood. As we were heading to the airport the weather took a turn for the worse and was very rainy and cold. We were so thankful for the weather we had during our short trip because originally it was supposed to be cold and rainy, and neither Hobbiton or Rangitoto would have been nearly as enjoyable.
Even with multiple delays we had a successful flight home where Leighton managed to entertain the majority of the plane as they waited to use the toilet (traveling with kid perk- you get stuck in the back by the bathroom).
That’s all for New Zealand, hopefully we will be back someday!