To the South – Day Two

The next morning we stopped at Lake Taupo’s most famous attraction, Huka Falls. According to Lonely Planet’s Guide to New Zealand, Huka Falls is “the spot where NZ’s longest river, the Waikato, is slammed into a narrow chasm, making a dramatic 10m drop (33 ft) into a surging pool.” It looked like Six Flag’s Thunder River on steroids, and it was so LOUD.

North Island, New ZealandNorth Island, New Zealand

I knew photos wouldn’t do it justice, so I took amateur videos for you.

Pretty impressive, huh?

We left Huka Falls and headed to Hawke’s Bay Wine Country.

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Ben had chosen Mission Estate Winery as our first stop. Mission Estate is New Zealand’s oldest winery, and it is located in a restored seminary. The grounds were beautiful.

North Island, New Zealand North Island, New Zealand

North Island, New Zealand

We took a quick tour of the building. In the basement, there were full wine barrels on display.

North Island, New Zealand

They also had an old bottling barrel. You can see how they used to bottle the wine.

North Island, New Zealand

After a quick wine tasting, the manager recommended we visit Moana Park Winery. While Mission Estate is large and grand, Moana Park is small and homey. We were the only ones there at the time, which meant we had an intimate wine tasting on the patio with the cellar door manager.

North Island, New Zealand

North Island, New Zealand

Moana Park’s wine proved to be better than that of Mission Estate. They are a natural winery that boasts low allergen wines with limited additives. The manager swears, because of this, their wine is hangover proof. With the price of the wine, it’s safe to say I’ll never test that theory.

After a relaxing day in wine country, we headed to the tip of the North Island to the city of Wellington. More on that tomorrow!

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