Sunday, 23 November 2014
The highlight of our trip last year in Sumatra was a visit to Krakatoa where we were able to go ashore and walk up the sides of the volcano. It's a rare privilege to be able to do this. Lots of cruise ship go there but you need a small one to get close and you need Zodiacs to get ashore, so most people get to look at it, but not climb up it. We did both.
This is White Island and it's very active! With luck we will be able to get the Zodiacs out and go ashore here too. Looking forward to it!
Day 7 - WHITE ISLAND
Arrive this morning at White Island. Weather permitting, there will be an excursion to explore the active volcano, identifiable by the plume of steam continually spouting from its crater. We will use the Zodiacs to reach the island and then spend approximately three hours on a guided walk to the crater. Afternoon cruising.
Saturday, 22 November 2014
Apparently it stinks. Literally...
Day 6 - TAURANGA FOR ROTORUA
This morning we will drive to the famous thermal springs Wai-O-Tapu at Rotorua to see the geysers and pools of bubbling mud. We also visit a local Maori Marae where we will enjoy a traditional Maori welcome and lunch.
Friday, 21 November 2014
It's a very comfortable ship. 57 cabins and a total guest complement of just over a hundred. It's tough, but somebody has to do it...
The company gives us a tour of the city this morning (ironic as we will have been here two days already) but we know we're going to the main museum here so we avoided doing that. After a leisurely lunch it's off to the ship for few glasses of bubbly and the obligatory safety briefing before we set sail this evening and settle down for dinner.
Day 5 - AUCKLAND
A morning tour will include the city’s highlights and the Auckland Museum, which houses the world’s largest collection of Polynesian artefacts. After lunch in a local restaurant we will transfer to the MS Caledonian Sky which is moored in the city.
Thursday, 20 November 2014
My friend Saxon says this is a nice place, so we take him at his word and hop on a ferry across the bay. Fantastic views of the city and a wander around the historic north shore suburb of Devonport.
The rest of our group touch down at lunchtime and we'll be joining them for a dinner tonight and there'll be a few familiar faces amongst both the expedition team and the other passengers.
Wednesday, 19 November 2014
Made it. Hopefully. Of course, we could have disappeared off the face of the planet somewhere into the Pacific Ocean. It has been known, after all...
I'd never know because I am writing this in advance - but then if I am dead, then I don't care anyway.
This is Auckland; the city of sails. We land bright and early in the morning and have a full day here on our own before the rest of our travelling companions turn up tomorrow lunchtime. They are flying via Hong Kong and we've done that so we thought we'd spend an extra day here instead.
We plan to go up the Sky Tower and then get our bearings. Nothing strenuous - just a wander around to shake off the jet lag.
I was silly enough to ask Flaxen Saxon what the weather is like out there at the moment with a view to deciding what to pack. This is what he sent me...
Cheers, matey. That's really helpful!