Cape Reinga - the bottom of the world but the very top of New Zealand and where two oceans collide. The Bay of Islands is a popular base to visit Cape Reinga on a day tour from Paihia to Cape Reinga -  the very tip of NZ.

Cape Reinga Lighthouse

By User:Gadfium (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Cape Reinga Day Tour - where we stopped

An early start as we boarded the air conditioned bus and headed to our first destination: the Puketi Kauri Forest. We took a short walk through the forest and the 2,000 year old trees. We then stopped by the sea side town of Taipa Beach for morning tea before venturing to the Cape.

Cape Reinga is a significant location to the Maori culture and is believed to be the departing place of spirits on their journey to the homeland, Hawaiki. As we arrived at the Cape, we felt like we were arriving at the very edge of the Earth - looking out to the ocean where the Pacific meets the Tasman Sea and literally nothing in sight. We ventured to the famous Cape Reinga Lighthouse which provided for fantastic photo opportunities 290 metres above sea level.

Meeting point of Tasman Sea and Pacific Ocean at the English language Wikipedia [GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0], from Wikimedia Commons

Taputaputa Bay was our next stop - a beautiful surf beach! We stayed here for lunch and had the option to chill out or play Rugby, Frisbee or Beach Cricket!

Our next destination: Te Paki Stream for some Sand Boarding! We grabbed our boogie boards, walked up the HUGE sand dunes and boarded down the slopes - this was amazing and the views were spectacular!

Sand Surfing Te Paki Sand Dunes

Te Paki Sand Dunes at Te Paki Stream by Bernard Spragg.NZ - license

One of the best parts about the Cape Reinga Day Trip, is that the coach is able to cruise along the sand highway (the beach is actually a registered highway) of 90 Mile Beach.

The driver (who I must note was informative throughout the entire trip) - revealed that the beach is not actually 90 miles - but 55 miles! The most common theory as to the incorrect name - is that years ago missionaries used to travel along the coast by horseback under the assumption that horses could travel 30 miles in one day. As the journey took 3 days - it was named 90 mile beach. It is now believed that the horses took longer to travel due to the sand! Regardless - the name remains and the beach is absolutely stunning!

The tour was amazing and Cape Reinga is most definitely a must see!

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