A few days back in Auckland, post-road trip edition.
After the camper van trip, I took a little time to relax, as we’d been on-the-go so much.
To start, I spent a few more days in Auckland.

I met back up with Michelle, and – after seeing the TPPA (Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement) protest walking down Queens Street – we headed out of the centre to have lunch and catch up, before heading to One Tree Hill (Maungakiekie) which looks out over the two harbours in Auckland.

The view from One Tree Hill is brilliant, and you can get a full 360º across that area of the Auckland region. It’s also a bit of a misnomer, as One Tree Hill no longer has it’s ‘One’ tree…

The story is that the original tree was cut down by a vandal in 1852. Attempts to regrow native trees on the summit all failed, but two pines survived. Again, the trees were victim and one felled in 1960. The final tree was apparently attacked multiple times by Maori activists to reflect the injustice the New Zealand government had imposed on them. The first attack in 1994 was unsuccessful, but the second attack in 2000 was too severe for the tree to recover from.

And so One Tree Hill has become known by its nickname ‘None Tree Hill’.

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360º view from the top of (N)One Tree Hill
View across Auckland bay
That same evening, Michelle and I joined up with her boyfriend Ben and their friends to watch the rugby at their local pub.

This was my first experience of watching rugby (for the whole match), and it was great to have a couple of people around who could explain the rules!

Not bad for my first rugby match, watching the All Blacks vs. the Wallabies, who were playing just down the road at Eden Park in Auckland in the Bledisloe Cup decider…

For anyone who doesn’t follow rugby, it seemed like a one-sided event, with the All Blacks successfully winning the cup by 41 to 13… Thankfully it was a bit more of a match for the Rugby World Cup Final on November 1st…

For the rest of the weekend, I mostly chilled, but also headed out to do something ‘normal’, so I wandered around town and went to the cinema, before I headed back down to Wellington.