The kiwis are nocturnal birds so they were in a darkened room but we saw plenty of other birds as well, oystercatchers, kingfishers, kea (mountain parrot), kaka, weka, owls, variety of ducks, as well as some lizards.
|Kiwi (this is actually a stuffed bird as you cannot take photos of the real birds)|
|A good looking bird which I cannot remember the name of!|
|The kiwi sculpture which greets you as you enter Otorohanga|
In the town centre we had to go and get our flat-ish tyre fixed and went on our way to Waitomo Caves. Our intention was to just see the Discovery Centre for information about glowworms and the caves, but it was so interesting we had to see cave as well.
We went down the Footwhistle Cave and saw hundreds of glowworms as well as stalactites and stalagmites. Looking up in the darkness of the cave it is like there are stars in the cave ceiling.
|The cave entrance and steps into the cave|
|Cave ceiling with iron deposits seeping through|
|Can you spot the glowworms?|
After our caving adventures we continued our journey to the Tongariro National Park AKA "Mordor" from The Lord of the Rings.
|Beautiful scenery en route to Tongariro National Park|
As we approached the park the sun was setting giving an eerie "Mordor" sky atmosphere and as we got nearer the surrounding countryside up to the cloud line became blood red. The mountain (volcano) peaks were unfortunately in the clouds but it was so beautiful and AMAZING!!