My shuttle bus left Coromandel town in the early morning and met up with the Magic Bus back in Thames around 10. From there we made the two hour journey up to Auckland, the City of Sails, and the largest New Zealand city with a population around 1.2 million.
I walked down the main street, Queen Street towards the harbour.
Auckland is just a big city, compared to the other New Zealand towns, and too be honest I don't find it too special. Good place to end the trip though I guess. It reminds me of Sydney, just a smaller and shittier version. It is filled with asians, souvenir shops, cafes and restaurants. To my surprise there is a Wendy's here. Although maybe my favorite fast food, I held out. Plus no dollar menu and we all know thats the reason anyone goes to Wendys, best dollar menu out there. I opted for a Kebab, damn was it good. Will definitely miss them.
After my walk around the harbour and the city center, I walked a bit out of town to Mount Eden, a volcano mountain that provides a 360 panoramic view of Auckland and surrounding areas. As I started the 30 minute walk to the base of the mountain it started to rain. Got pretty wet but luckily it died out by the time I started my climb. Pretty good view from the top, Auckland's skyline is dominated by the Skytower. The Skytower is basically just a smaller wannabee Space Needle in my opinion. But on the skytower you have the option to do a bungee jump off of it which is pretty cool.
My walk back from Mount Eden was once again marred by rain, but didnt mind it.
Originally I was planning to take an easy last night in New Zealand, but things changed around 10 oclock. I had 3 german guys in my room as well as one Kiwi. We started drinking some beers and decided to go out. Glad I met them or I would not have gone out. We drank my favorite New Zealand beers, Tui and Speights. I will definitely miss them.
We headed out around midnight to Globe Bar, a big backpackers bar. We got rejected at the door because we didn't have any girls.
Let me just digress on this for a minute. This is the first bar in NZ or OZ that this has happened to me, but it has happened to me back in the States. It really annoys me. Any bar that turns me down for not having girls I will not support with my business. It doesn't make sense to me. How could you turn down 5 guys who would support your bar and buy drinks. Clearly business can't be that great if there is no girls in your bar. Even after you decline me at the door, why would I want to go into the bar if there were no girls. Just doesn't make sense to me. I took my business elsewhere.
The kiwi guy, Joseph, ironically, and I split from the germans since they were going to meet their mates. The kiwi and I headed around the corner to an Irish bar, Father Ted's. What a great place, plenty of woman there and Im sure it put to shame globe bar. Globe bar lost around 20 dollars business from me. Best yet, they had a live band that absolutely killed it. The vox on the lead singer where phenomenal. They started out with some chili peppers. Other standout songs included "Sweet Child of Mine" by Guns & Roses and an absolute killer encore "Killin in the Name" by Rage Against the Machine. Singer nailed these two vocally talented songs. The crowd was absolutely amped at the end of Killin in the Name of and wanted more but it was closing time.
Throughout the night, my last night on this 5 month journey, it really hit me how great traveling has been and how much I lived the good life. It sunk in and reminded me that all the great times were coming to an end. Being in a bar, surrounded by other travelers from around the world, with not a worry in life, just living the dream. These sure were the days, and im optimistic they won't be the last. Im young, adventurous, ill make anything happen that I want to, just got deal with some obstacles on the side in life (money, career).
Anyhow, it was a great last night, a great way to go out.
Day 2 : Sunday March 7, 2010
Last day in the beautiful country and on this side of the world. Spent the morning gathering up some last minute souvenirs and had maybe my best cappuccino of the entire trip.
In real time now, currently sitting in Aucklands Domain under some trees typing out the final blog posts, listening to some Dave Matthews & Tim Reynolds.
Bus to airport leaves in about 4 hours. Looking forward to the flight, goin with Air New Zealand, excited for some in flight entertainment and some great tasting airline meals.
Will have either some fish n chips, a burger from the popular NZ burger chain "Burger Fuel" or another Kebab for my last meal in town.