Wednesday, December 29, 2010

NZ #6 : coromandel's train & waterworks

all this time there was nothing really for the boy to look forward to, so we decided to spend 2 nites in whitianga in the coromandel peninsula (see map of north island in previous post) to give him a treat.

the 1st stop was the only narrow-gauge railway train still operational in NZ. (narrow gauge of 15ins allows for sharper curves)
**image from Driving Creek Railways website : barry himself driving the train**

actual view from inside the train.

this train/tracks were originally built by teacher-turned-potter barry brickell to transport clay from volcanic rocks from the hills to his pottery, & also gold when it was discovered here. part of the hill is fortified with beer bottles consumed by the workers during construction of the railway.

because the hill is too steep for train to ascend directly, the rail has several reversal points where the train changes direction in a zig-zag manner upwards.
one of the 5 reversal points.....

and the same reversal point from another view

the top station is sometimes called the Eyeful Tower (get it?) & this is the view.....

the Driving Creek Railways has become such an attraction that nowadays it carries more tourists than raw materials.

the next stop is the Waterworks theme park. it's not a theme park by way of rides, games & parades, but rather an educational park explaining the origins, uses & conservation of water.

like how water is used to drive a wheel to operate farm machines....

like how to operate a water pump like the old days...

but it's not like it's just all learning & no play. there are other activities to keep the kids happy....

trying to negotiate loops with a steady hand

doing a flying-fox-type swing
ET go home...incidentally, both the kids' initials are the same - ET.
but this is definitely their favourite.....firing water cannons

tomorrow, we go on our last leg of the vacation - hobbiton & lake roturua.


LX said...

Happy sigh. Good to hear you had so much fun with family in NZ.

doc said...


UK & NZ are definitely a world apart. hope the winter passes fast for you.

Filip Demuinck said...

It looks a bit like the railway tracks in Kanchanaburi, Thailand. Bridge over the river Kwai.

doc said...


except that there was no deaths reported during the construction of this railway.

JoMel said...

The two ETs looked like they had tons of fun! I don't think these ETs wanted to go home. :P

A blessed 2011 to you and your family, doc. :)

doc said...


the 2 ETs wish to visit south island next.

blessed new year to you & your family!