What a great feeling it is to in the country I grew up in, New Zealand. So far has been all I hoped for – refreshing and warm, especially since our flight landing was delayed due to wind and weather alerts on the ground about cyclone Cook ripping its way through the country. Nevertheless, the next day, had blue skies and sunshine, with only periodic showers. So yeah… What Cyclone?!
Exquisite Locations Travel Cinemagraph 001
You cannot replace the warmth you feel when your eyes are met by the faces of friends and family that you haven’t seen in years – the last time I was on these shores was 2013 and it’s been just amazing.
Here is my first attempt at a video-log or Vlog (as the kids are calling it!)
My first morning back
My First Travel Vlog
After this was taken, we did the trip past Orewa Beach and onto the village of Matakana. Check out the iconic Four Square Dairy and Post Office – very Kiwi and you’ll find one or similar in most NZ villages and towns. Heading to the popular farmer’s markets, we quickly found that we’d missed by 30mins! So, if you’re thinking of going, do try to get there no later than 11 am for a good look around and give yourself plenty of drive time – traffic heading north can be chocka on the weekend, especially in summer. Feeling the hunger groans, my friends ushered over to The Matakana – a restored early 1900’s pub that flaunts a Garden bar, a wide range of local and imported brews as well as a menu that filled with locally sourced produce that looked to impress both the humble traveller like me and the Artisan. This area is also famous for oysters however, we were out of luck and, due to recent storms, the oysters were nowhere to be found. We pick our bottom lips up placed our orders and retreated classically NZ styled outdoor Garden Bar to enjoy the day’s sun. It wasn’t long before our beers arrived.
This area is also famous for oysters however, we were out of luck and, due to recent storms, the oysters were nowhere to be found. We pick our bottom lips up placed our orders and retreated classically NZ styled outdoor Garden Bar to enjoy the day’s sun. It wasn’t long before our beers arrived. Mine was this sampler so aptly named the ‘Cheeky Threesome’ (Pale Ale / Pilsner / IPA), all tasty but I think my favourite had to be the Pale Ale – just my tastes I guess.
Next to arrive at our table was, from the pit smoker, Low’n’Slow Smoked Pork Belly, Fish & Chips and the Salt’n’Pepper Squid – and that’s the great thing about dining with friends, you get to order and try more than you would as a loner…!! 🙂
The Matakana left us nurse happily full bellies as we shuffled back to our car in search of the vintage/antique shops that are dotted around the area – one had a rather styli little ice cream caravan at the front! If you find it, you won’t be disappointed.