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Mark Moxon's Travel Writing

New Zealand: Northland

The Cape Reinga signpost
The unavoidable Cape Reinga signpost

From Whangarei I drove north to Matauri Bay, home to an extremely picturesque primary school, and the best views from a principal's office in the country, and possibly the world. It's also the resting place of the Greenpeace ship the Rainbow Warrior; after being blown up in Auckland by the French in 1995, the ship was laid to rest off Matauri Bay, which is a fitting resting place for a ship dedicated to saving the planet. The interview with the school principal went very well, and I had the honour of having a full haka performed for me by the school children; a haka is what the All Blacks perform before playing rugby, and the version I witnessed went on for about five minutes. Hakas are performed for honoured guests and very important people, and it gave me quite a buzz to see this classroom of Maori kids getting really into it. Soon after I was back on the road, with the sun still shining, and I drove to the small town of Kerikeri in the Bay of Islands and pitched camp, ready to visit the local Acorn dealer in the morning.

Cape Reinga lighthouse
I couldn't see the Cape Reinga lighthouse until I stubbed my toe on it...