Rotorua has a lot of geothermal activity and therefore usually has a strong smell of sulphur all around the city. It’s not that pleasant and takes some getting used to, but I smelled worse. Also, I was going to stay 3 nights, so better not make a fuss about it 😉
We were supposed to come into Rotorua before 9 a.m., but because the sheet had taken forever to go around the bus and the office hours for Hobbiton were a bit silly, it meant that the people who wanted to do it and stay on the bus didn’t get to do it. That was of course pretty upsetting for them, but not really Luca’s fault if some people hog it for over an hour… Anyway, the alternative was Wai-O-Tapu with the geyser and we went there. I wasn’t really keen on the park and just hung out in the bus and the cafe because it was too early to go to the hostel.
Even when we came back into Rotorua, it was still too early, but at least I could leave my luggage there and got a map from the receptionist, pointing out a nice 2 hour walk around the town and the lakefront. So I grabbed my camera, money and my hat and walked. The day was beautiful and sunny, the walk very pleasant and because I was in no hurry, I stopped here and there and took about 3 hours to come back.
However, on my way I had read the news about the terror attack in Paris that night and so went straight to the tv lounge with my computer after leaving my luggage in the room. Some more people were gathered there and together we watched the horrible news. This also was a main feature of the next days as the WiFi was free and the weather bad…
The next morning I had booked on the Hobbiton tour. They have a huge operation there now and two buses doing the tour daily, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. It took about an hour to get there and the first stop was the shop. I didn’t find anything there though, most of the stuff was either tacky or too expensive 😉
The actual tour of the hobbit holes and the area was really nice and interesting! Even though we were under time pressure to get through it before the next group, there was enough time for photos and I think everyone was happy 🙂 The tour ended in the Green Dragon, where we got a free drink and could warm up in front of the fire. It was a grey day, but apparently we had missed the worst of the rain in the pub 🙂
The rain continued for the rest of the day and all of the next, so I didn’t even leave the hostel 😛