Return to Mordor

One does not simply walk into Mordor – she hikes, hobbles, trips, slips, gets back up and continues forward. In the end, it’s all worth it.

Somehow what was supposed to be a long relaxing holiday weekend in Lake Taupo turned into 7 hours of hiking nearly 18km across an active volcano. But I have no regrets!

Lava Me Now or Lava Me Not

For my little sister's last full day in New Zealand before returning to school back in the states, she wanted to do something AWESOME and adventurous. No problem. We should be able to find something within a 3-hour radius. We should probably go to a volcano, right? Make that Mt. Raupehu, the largest active volcano in New Zealand, which last erupted in 2007. Mount Doom! (For all of you Lord of Rings fans out there.)

Buried Village, Digging Up more Adventure!

Before we left Roturua, we made a final stop at the Buried Village. The Buried Village was established by a European Christian missionary in the 1840s and was a model village where both Maori and European settlers lived. In 1866, Mt. Tarawera erupted burying the village and more than 150 people in its mud and ash. The eruption also took with it, the eighth wonder of the world: The Pink and White Terraces.