So there are a few different tours that the Habitat Tour company run. We chose to do their Tawharanui Regional Park in the day/night tour. We love walking through natural trust places, local forests, and pretty much any natural beauty sights, so this tour was one for us.
We started off visiting one of the biggest trees I think I have ever seen, it a called a ‘Kauri’ tree, and it was huge (as you can see by the comparison with me, hehe. We walked into the parry kauri forest but first, we sprayed our shoes with the liquid provided; this can be found a lot of the forests of New Zealand. It’s because the Kauri dieback disease is affecting a lot of trees and they want to stop the spread disease to other areas.
The parry kauri forest was a delightful little walk through the rural forest land of North New Zealand, Tristan our tour guide was knowledgeable of the local plant and wildlife, he pointed out so many different things that we probably would’ve just walked past in our ignorance. The second place we visited was a small but relatively new town with a beautiful little waterfall and the cutest sculptural public toilets but for the life of me, I can’t remember the name if it. Uugh!
The next place we visited was Tawharanui Regional Park; this was an entirely enclosed park with a rather large electronic fence. That had been erected to form a natural barricade to keep out rabbits, cats, dogs, etc. and they have done this because they wanted to create a super safe environment for New Zealand’s rarer bird life. It has been so successful that they have species that are now flourishing these include the Takahe bird and the brown Kiwi bird.
The carpark is right next to the shoreline, and we walked along the path into the forest part of the park, we had to spray our shoes again, and we continued. We walked along, and Tristan told us the history of our surroundings, he pointed out all the different species and it was fascinating, maybe not for everyone but I enjoyed it. We walked back to the beach and had a delicious picnic dinner; it was a delicious a mixture of different salads, and I had ham and Lee had a handmade pie, definitely a winner with us. Yum Yum.
Once we had finished, the sun had set, and we began walking again. It was so odd even though we were walking the same path in almost complete darkness; we just had a tiny head harness to see where we were going.
The plan was to try and stumble across a wild brown Kiwi bird, yeah I know, their rare and super shy but we had our finger’s crossed, and we trod quietly.
We, unfortunately, weren’t very lucky, we didn’t get to see a Kiwi, but we did get to hear a mating call, not so great but hey ho, we tried. We did get to see a couple of funnel web spiders and a native ‘Wetter’ which was very cool.
It was a great day/night tour and we are very thankful to Tristan for sharing his exceptional knowledge.