Cape Reinga & extreme Sand Dunes

A few weeks ago we had the pleasure of going to the Bay of Islands with our good friends Shannon & Reka. 

 Light house @ Cape Reinga

Light house @ Cape Reinga

 Sand Dunes of Te Paki

Sand Dunes of Te Paki

We went and stayed right around the Bay of Islands at Shannan's dad's place. It was a really beautiful home that overlooked the bay. Since Ryan and I had never been to Cape Reinga, Reka and Shannon really wanted to take us there to do some exploring. Cape Reinga is the northwestern most tip of New Zealand. Te Rerenga Wairua is Cape Reinga's Māori name. 

 Cape Reinga

Cape Reinga

Also at the location you can see the meeting of two different seas. This separation is between the Tasman Sean to the west and the Pacific Ocean to the east. From the light house one can see the different colors of the ocean as well as the waves clashing together. The Maori refer to this being a female and male meeting. 

Cape Reinga

The Maori people believe that the Cape's Point is where the spirits of the dead enter the under world. According to mythology the spirits of the dead travel to Cape Reinga because they are on their journey to the afterlife. They jump off the end of the cape and climb the roots of an 800 year-old Pohutukawa tree and go back to their traditional homeland Hawaiki. In Polynesian mythology, this is the home of the Polynesian people before they dispersed across Polynesia.

 Cape Reinga - Most northern point of NZ

Cape Reinga - Most northern point of NZ

After checking out Cape Reinga we went to see The massive sand dunes located nearby Cape Reinga. It's about a 15 minute drive to the dunes. The sand formations are insane with dunes as tall as large buildings. There is also continually moving sand and you truly feel like your in the desert although you are next to the beach with lush green rolling hills.  

 Sand Dunes of Te paki

Sand Dunes of Te paki

We had a really awesome time and met some friends along the way there. They let us borrow their sand boards and we went sand boarding off the top of the dunes and got covered everywhere with sand. After sand duning we got dinner and the next day we went kayaking in the bay. It was a really incredible weekend!