Sulphur-Scented Adventuring

Before this last Homestead relocation, weekends would often find us loading up the Homestead Mobile and heading off on some form of adventure. As these jaunts generally culminated in capering on beaches, the move to our current location rendered the need to drive for a couple of hours to breathe the briny air redundant, and adventures kind of fell by the wayside. Recently, however, spurred in part by Maori Television’s programme, Native Kitchen, which is filmed in our old stomping ground and Farm Girl’s place of birth: Rotorua, in part by her place of birth cropping up in general conversation in the Kauri Room at The Kingdom of Nova, and also by the certainty that we’ll soon be neck deep in our busy season, it was decided an adventure was well overdue. Firstly, we had to consider the menagerie. We’ve mentioned our neighbours before, haven’t we? Used words like awesome and wonderful? Huge, huge thanks to Mrs Ezekiel Tigerlily for keeping the beasties fed and watered, especially in the wake of Miss Ruby Goat’s medical attention-seeking earlier in the week. Yes, we truly know how lucky we are.

So it was, assured that Ruby was content and well (although her vision is still not 100%) and that her paddock pals were looking out for her, we were convinced not to cash our tickets in and headed out to the airport to catch the red-eye to Sulphur City. This was the first trip back for a couple of us, so a long list of “must sees” had been compiled.

We’d knocked off all the schools, the old Homestead, and the site of a great many Farmer foot-balling triumphs by morning tea time


during which it became apparent that Farm Girl, despite her first breaths being taken in the heart of this thermal wonderland, was truly struggling with Rotorua’s unique bouquet.


When caramel slice is shunned, you know all is not right in Farm Girl’s world.

Still, ever the trooper, she allowed us to continue on with our tour. When the wind was blowing in the right direction, she became her normal, fun-loving self


which it thankfully was when we visited Ohinemutu, where Native Kitchen was filmed.

rotorua4The inside of St Faith’s Church sums Rotorua up perfectly; the merging and melding of two cultures


with the etched window being the highlight for Farm Girl – and the rest of us too


The wind became fluky as we checked out the old waka (canoe) by Lake Rotorua, causing Farm Girl’s colour to fade

ELSIE ROTORUA 279 so we headed to the Government Gardens


and the most iconic view of Rotorua


(minus The Milk Maid, that is), Rotorua Museum.

And this is where Farm Girl became unstuck. She was too tired and it was too smelly! Acknowledging that enough was enough, we retired to our accommodation.


Some ventured out that night


Princess Nikita eyes up a strike, watched by The Renovator and Bean Counter

while some chose a more relaxed evening, and in the morning, after a good sleep, Farm Girl was back on deck.


so we could all enjoy breakfast at an old favourite, Le Cafe de Paris, which is still just as wonderful as we remembered it to be.

Our last stop before heading home was The Redwoods


where we all stretched our legs


after shaking hands with the yarn-bombed locals, and heading for home, where the Homestead (and Spring) awaited us.



15 thoughts on “Sulphur-Scented Adventuring

  1. Hmm think we have some of those pics as well – actually probably a few featuring the odd ( in every sense) homesteader. Good times but can sympathise with Farm Girl.
    School hols now so will be beating a track to a cafe near you soon.

  2. That’s so funny! I thought when I saw the picture of the plane in the last post, that it reminded me of the plane we took from Rotorua to Christchurch in 2014. Rotorua was our favourite airport on that trip – so chill, as my girls would say. I’ve been to the Government Gardens too, but that’s about all I recognize – saw the museum but didn’t go in. Sounds like you all had a wonderful adventure, saw lots, did lots, and had good times. It’s fun visiting old haunts sometimes.

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