over easter i had a chance to be a tourist again, but this time back in my own country. ten of us ventured northwards, where a glorious miracle ($6 for 8 people for accommodation, total… we only had to pay a bit more for two extra people!) lead us to a hostel in Paihia, a five minute walk from the shore. the bay of islands, if you’ve not yet visited, is pretty spectacular. the views are stunning at every corner you turn. amongst other things, we rode bikes across Waitangi where we stopped to swim at a small bay, did many bush walks, swam, swam, swam (+ it’s autumn!), rode the giant sand dunes first unsuccessfully with cardboard, and later zooming down with boogie boards (where i got more sand in my mouth/ears than i’d anticipated), saw beautiful sunsets, took a ferry ride at sunrise, had the most epic swim in crystal clear water at Mangawhai Heads and of course drove to the most northern tip of New Zealand – Cape Reinga. it was such a great trip, and one which made me finally stoked to be back in my home country, i’m a lucky lady to live in a country like this. below are a few of the photos i took before i dropped my camera, resulting in the death of one of my most trusty lenses… dang it.