Another day, another ride! And today is just as good as the ones before. First we head on to the Million Dollar View Road for some excellent twisty roads.and stunning views, then visit New Zealand's oldest building for a flat white. After quick stop at the most famous public rest rooms in New Zealand we head out onto Old Russell Road for 60km of grin-inducing twists and turns. Our goal for the day is Russell, New Zealand's first capital and "Hellhole of the Pacific "!
There is no rest for the wicked, so our plan for today is to ride the final 100km north to Cape Reinga, the northern most point one can reach by road in New Zealand. The road is almost deserted as the skies clear from overcast to clear blue. The cape has an almost magical atmosphere, with a single white lighthouse surrounded by the Tasman Sea and the Pacific Ocean. After a relaxed ride back we return to our hotel where enjoy a beautiful afternoon in one of the most beautiful places in the country.
A shorter ride today, but one that's full of highlights. First a relaxing ride to Dargaville, where things become decidedly less relaxed as we enter the Waipoua Forest. The road becomes narrower, with tight turns and hidden dips as the road winds its way north. One of the best roads of the trip so far! We stop in.one of the many forest glades to visit the Lord of the Forest, a giant Kauri tree, then carry on to the beautiful shores of Hokianga Harbour. After a short ferry ride across the harbour we tackle one of the best roads in New Zealand. Mangamouka Gorge is a motorcycle dream, a road designed to put a massive grin on a riders face! Our next stop is Kaitaia, where we gas up the bikes and the ride the last few miles to Karikari, where we will spend the next two nights.
It's a long ride today as we start our trek north. After crossing the Coromandel once more we hit the highway, then circle around Auckland. Along the way we stop at Piha beach and then head towards the Kauri coast. The roads offer excellent grip, allowing us to enjoy the seemingly never ending twisties to their fullest. After a visit to the excellently quirky Kauri museum we tackle the last few miles to Whangarei, our home for the night.
Our first day takes us out of the hectic heart of Auckland towards the sleepy suburbs of Maraetai and Kawakawa Bay. City traffic gives way to beautiful sweepers and ocean views as we ride around the Firth of Thames and onto the Coromandel road, that circles the peninsula. After an excellent lunch af very fresh fish and chips we continue to Tairua, a sleepy sea side village just perfect for a late afternoon swim.