Paihia to Huntly Via Russell, Helena Bay, Whangarei, Wellsford, Helensville and Auckland 3,050 kms

Feb 08, 2019

A little cooler night and fine comfortable day today with light sprinkle of moisture only this morning. We had breakfast in Russell which by the way was the sight of the first NZ capital but was later changed to Wellington because the reputation of Russell, Hell Hole of the Pacific was not desirable and with the stroke of a pen Auckland was named the capital, and later Wellington and Russell was burnt to the ground. Hmm, it is a charming spot today. From here we wound our way down the west coast with spectacular ocean and island views before heading across the island on the Twin Coasts highway to get to Huntly tonight where we are staying in a lovely old building built in 1926 which was originally a maternity hospital.


Heading off on the ferry to Russell.


An appropriately named breakfast spot in Russell – Hell Hole Café in the street behind the Duke of Marlborough Hotel where we lunched yesterday. It was the first licensed hotel in New Zealand and as you would have seen in my post yesterday it had traded for a number of years before it was legitimised.


Elliot Bay, one of many beautiful spots but I could stop to take a photo of this one.


The bikes attract attention no matter where we go … here by tourists and chooks alike. Bizarre on the edge of the motorway but I suspect the chooks have learnt that tourists throw them scraps.


Heading across on the Twin Coasts Road and an awesome view back to the east coast before we are really heading west.


And an interesting bridge in Huntly.

Last 3 nights’ accommodation:

Dolphin Motel Paihia

69 Williams Road

Paihia NZ


Short walking distance to the shops and shoreline and a nice green outlook. We are in the older part of the complex in a small studio suite with no air-conditioning, but a fan was provided (I really must read more closely and not skim) but well maintained and serviced. Comfortable bed and table and chairs on the balcony which is a lovely breezy spot to sit. Staff very helpful and friendly.