Thursday, November 3, 2016

Day Two in Auckland

Today was a proper fun filled day.  The first item on the list was to take a 25-minute ferry from Auckland to Rangitoto Island.

Rangitoto Island, actually the Rangitoto Island Scenic Reserve, is a 5.5 km (3,4 mile) volcanic island located in the Hauraki Gulf.  It is the largest, and most recent, of the 50 or so volcanoes of the Auckland volcanic field.

The island was formed at least 6000 years ago by a series of eruptions.  The most recent eruptions took place 550 to 600 years ago.

The volcano's crater

When New Zealand was first colonised by the British Crown, the island was purchased in 1854 for only £15.  What a bargain.

Lava tunnel
In 1890 it became a recreational reserve.

During WWII, military facilities were installed to help protect Auckland and to house U.S. troops.

As of 2011 the island is pest free and visitors are not allowed to bring any animals on to the island.  Rangitoto has more than 200 species of trees and flowers including over 40 different types of fern.  Hiking up a volcano across lava fields makes it a popular day trip from the city.

View of Auckland from Rangitoto
After a full day on the island, and another trip up to the top of the Sky Tower, it was nap time before getting ready for the theatre.

The production of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert recently opened in Auckland and we were able to get tickets.

The Civic Theatre first opened in 1929.  After a major conservation effort it reopened in 2000.  The theatre is well known for its atmospheric style.  Thanks to the design and lighting it gives the audience the impression of being in an outdoor auditorium complete with twinkling stars.

The show was amazing!  I think it's even better than the original film.  Here's a short video I found out on YouTube.
©Auckland Live

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