We stayed with my brother-, sister- and mother-in-law in Tauranga and Athenree. This part of Noz, though it's as far south as Melbourne, has a clement climate, so warm and mild that in the garden of the cottage at Athenree, there was a paw-paw tree, an avocado tree, a plum tree (laden with plums), and a fig tree. Tauranga and Athenree are both on a 60 kilometer long lagoon/estuary, and beyond the coastal dune system there is a surprisingly warm sea.
|We spread our towels under this massive tree, a pohutakawa|
|Island off the coast at Waihi beach|
|Waihi Beach looking north|
|Athenree estuary near holiday cottage (little spikes in the mud are baby mangroves)|
|Athenree estuary looking inland towards mountain range|
|Athenree estuary at twilight|
By the way, just in case you were wondering -- I didn't take these pics!