& this is the top half...
from paihia, we drove northeastwards pass kaitia towards cape reinga. on the eastern coast of this peninsula is the so-called 90-mile beach, although it's actually 60 miles long.
it's a white sand beach & bus/4-wheel drive tours go on the whole length of the beach.
cars are discouraged from doing this as there's a risk they may get stuck in the sand.
we drove up to the firm sand & took a few shots. here, you can see tyre tracks in the foreground where vehicles have travelled before us.
then went on our way northwards to cape reinga. it's a hilly road & can give one the impression that the car will go off the cliff.
after parking the car, a short winding path leads to the lighthouse.
"reinga" in maori means "underworld" & refers to the Māori belief that the cape is the point where the spirits of the dead leap off the cliff to enter the underworld to return to their traditional homeland of Hawaiiki-a-nui.
they also believe that where the warm tasman sea meets the cold pacific ocean, called "the meeting place", waves of unsettled waters seen off the cape...
.....mark the union of a male & female sea, the whirlpools where the currents clash signifying new life.(a good illustration for our educators to teach
we thought we would do sandboarding on the way back but it was just too warm & dry, & the kids didn't think getting sand all over was a good idea.
so we gave it a miss.
tomorrow, we check-out & head south for the coromandel peninsula - for some kiddy attraction. (see map, black arrow)