Napier and Hastings are the largest twin cities in Hawke’s Bay. They both enjoy higher amount of sunshine and warmer climates as compared to other places in New Zealand. Consequently a lot of fruit is produced in the region. The vineyards are also very abundant in the region because of the very reason.
Although we had visited a lot of places in the past 2 days, it was a no-brainer to visit the twin cities and their major attractions. The weather forecast was not very favourable for the day and we thought we would make the most of our time there. After checking out of the accommodation we drove towards Cape Kidnappers.
We visited Clifton, a small settlement just before Cape Kidnappers and had breakfast there. After a short walk and bit of sightseeing, we decided to go to Te MataPeak in Havelock North, a famous suburb in Hastings, since it was nearby. After only half an hour’s drive from Clifton, we reached Te Mata Peak. I had been here earlier, hence knew the place and surrounds very well.
The peak is a marvellous place and offers awe inspiring 360 degree views of the surroundings including the Pacific Ocean and the huge Hawke’s Bay plains. There is a small car park on the top of the mountain which easily gets congested on a nice sunny day due to large number of visitors. There are some walks on the peak and surroundings, clearly segregated on the basis of difficulty levels.
|Views from Te Mata Peak.|
The Arataki honey factory is also located in Havelock North. We skipped to visit it since we were already short on time. On the way to Napier, we saw a large fig orchard and decided to see how figs were grown. We could see some fig trees and the visitor centre at Te Mata Figs sold a decent variety of fig based products. We did purchase some figs since they were very tempting.
|A Beautiful fountain on the Marine Parade.|
|Pacific Ocean from the Marine Parade.|
|Art Deco Museum, Napier.|
|Port Napier seen from Bluff Hill Lookout.|
Located in Waikato region near Putaruru, the Blue Spring is a natural mineral water aquifer which accounts for more than 70% of bottled spring water in New Zealand. After an hour and a half we reached the Blue Spring car park at Leslie Road and saw huge queues of people visiting. We had to park the car a little bit far from the entrance and walk the rest.
to Blue Spring is through a small car park and the walk is almost a kilometre from
the car park. It took about 15 minutes to reach the springs. We saw people just
swimming and lying around in the spring with their families. The place had been
recently made popular due to media coverage. There were a lot of people
visiting given the small number of facilities available.
|Looking eastwards from Bluff Hill Lookout.|
|People taking a dip at Blue Spring.|
|Info about Blue Spring.|
PS: These days entering and swimming in Blue Spring has been prohibited due to environmental concerns by the local council.