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nimiq

Bay of Island

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Hello all,

 

What excursions have you done here while in port ?

 

U heard about the Glow Warm cave and was wondering how was that and the price you paid as well.

 

 

Thanks all

Sea ya

 

Eric

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Hi Eric,

 

I was recently on Ovation and did the glow worm cave and kauri (I think thats how you spell it) forest tour which was a 4 hour excursion that I purchased when on sale in the cruise planner for AUD $109.

 

I don't think I would do this again. Unless you are a serious nature lover or a kid its not that interesting/exciting. Half the tour is spent on the bus (although I think that is the case with a lot of the tours in NZ) so you end up spending about 30-40 minutes in the cave. The forest was a nice walk but again not that exciting.

 

The upside was both the driver and the two guides were friendly and professional and did their best to answer questions. 

 

Just a tip: use the toilets when you get off the tender. There were no toilets at the forest and the mens room near the glow worm cave had limited facilities. 

 

I hope this helps.

 

This was the second time I went to NZ on Ovation of the Seas so if you have other questions about the ports or the ship I might be able to answer them.

 

Happy Cruising!

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On 1/1/2020 at 12:43 AM, Mike From Syd said:

Hi Eric,

 

I was recently on Ovation and did the glow worm cave and kauri (I think thats how you spell it) forest tour which was a 4 hour excursion that I purchased when on sale in the cruise planner for AUD $109.

 

I don't think I would do this again. Unless you are a serious nature lover or a kid its not that interesting/exciting. Half the tour is spent on the bus (although I think that is the case with a lot of the tours in NZ) so you end up spending about 30-40 minutes in the cave. The forest was a nice walk but again not that exciting.

 

The upside was both the driver and the two guides were friendly and professional and did their best to answer questions. 

 

Just a tip: use the toilets when you get off the tender. There were no toilets at the forest and the mens room near the glow worm cave had limited facilities. 

 

I hope this helps.

 

This was the second time I went to NZ on Ovation of the Seas so if you have other questions about the ports or the ship I might be able to answer them.

 

Happy Cruising!

Hello,

 

that’s so nice from you answering me back and by the sounds of it now not sure I want to pay that much for those Glow worms lol. 
 

Your insight on any excursions in NZ will be of great welcome. The only one we have booked so far is the Hobbitons one.

 

thanks again

Sea ya

Eric 

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Hi Eric,

 

I have not done Hobbiton and even though I have not seen most of the movies I went to the Weta Workshop in Wellington and found the tour quite interesting. We were shown a lot of props, costumes and got to learn how they made some of them. There was also a room where we were allowed to take photos and there was a man working on a sculpture that actually stopped and explained what he was doing.

 

Also in Wellington I went to Te Papa museum which had a lot of traditional Maori artifacts and huge figures showing scenes from war which were actually made by Weta Workshop.

 

I also did the tour of parliament which was the least interesting of my day out in Wellington.

 

In Auckland I did a local tour (not from ship) called Auckland Free Walking Tour. It went for about 2.5 hours, is easy to find when you get off the tender and its an easy cheap activity - most people gave a $5 donation at the end of the tour. They are volunteers after all. The lady running the tour was quite informative and friendly and she offered sunscreen. I'm not sure if the link will come through, but here it is:

https://www.afwt.co.nz/aboutus

 

It was actually good to see the silvery glow of the worms in the dark of the cave (at Bay of Islands). I don't think we have anything like that in Australia, but forests and bush - we have plenty of that. Unfortunately a lot of it is on fire lately. Another thing is you are not allowed to take photos in the cave.

 

What other stops is the ship making? Do you have questions about the ship?

 

Mike

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My DH and I are planning on the visiting the Kawiti Glow Worn Caves as recommended by other CC posters and the reviews on Tripadvisor. https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g2093681-d2292287-r152566288-Kawiti_Caves-Kawakawa_Northland_Region_North_Island.html

It seems to be such a unique place, like no other in our part of the world.

 

I have not finalized our plans, but here is a copy of our notes from other cruisers her on CC (sorry, I cannot give credit where due).

 

To see the Kawiti Glow worm caves at bay of islands on your own:

You will take a tender from the ship to a dock outside of town near the Waitanga Treaty Grounds.

Shuttle to parking lot from tender - most cruiselines offer a free shuttle bus to downtown Paihia

In the parking lot near the Bay of Islands I-Site visitor center in Paihia, there will be tour vendors advertising trips around the area.

If you are reluctant to go from vendor to vendor in the parking lot, go inside the Visitor Center and they'll give you the info on which vendor goes to where you want to go and even book it from the office. (which was 50 feet away from the outdoor vendor tables) (On our tour, half of the people had booked from inside the Visitor's Center and the other half, like us, just walked up to her table in the parking lot and asked about the tour.

OR if you like having a something planned in advance before getting off the ship, Go online and

Check out Shore Trips and Tours. They are a reputable New Zealand Tour company. Lots of cruise people take tours with them. They have group tours that include the Kawiti Caves.

hope this information helps.

And another:

This is the company used for our cruise last April to see the glow worms.  Phil was great, provided 2 car seats for my 6 and 4 year old and on 24 hours notice changed our tour from morning to afternoon.  Ended up only being the 4 of us on the tour.

Phil Bell

ABC Shuttle and Tours

Ph. 022 025 0800

E-mail: info@abcshuttle.co.nz

www.abcshuttle.co.nz

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3 hours ago, sippican said:

My DH and I are planning on the visiting the Kawiti Glow Worn Caves as recommended by other CC posters and the reviews on Tripadvisor. https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g2093681-d2292287-r152566288-Kawiti_Caves-Kawakawa_Northland_Region_North_Island.html

It seems to be such a unique place, like no other in our part of the world.

 

I have not finalized our plans, but here is a copy of our notes from other cruisers her on CC (sorry, I cannot give credit where due).

 

To see the Kawiti Glow worm caves at bay of islands on your own:

You will take a tender from the ship to a dock outside of town near the Waitanga Treaty Grounds.

Shuttle to parking lot from tender - most cruiselines offer a free shuttle bus to downtown Paihia

In the parking lot near the Bay of Islands I-Site visitor center in Paihia, there will be tour vendors advertising trips around the area.

If you are reluctant to go from vendor to vendor in the parking lot, go inside the Visitor Center and they'll give you the info on which vendor goes to where you want to go and even book it from the office. (which was 50 feet away from the outdoor vendor tables) (On our tour, half of the people had booked from inside the Visitor's Center and the other half, like us, just walked up to her table in the parking lot and asked about the tour.

OR if you like having a something planned in advance before getting off the ship, Go online and

Check out Shore Trips and Tours. They are a reputable New Zealand Tour company. Lots of cruise people take tours with them. They have group tours that include the Kawiti Caves.

hope this information helps.

And another:

This is the company used for our cruise last April to see the glow worms.  Phil was great, provided 2 car seats for my 6 and 4 year old and on 24 hours notice changed our tour from morning to afternoon.  Ended up only being the 4 of us on the tour.

Phil Bell

ABC Shuttle and Tours

Ph. 022 025 0800

E-mail: info@abcshuttle.co.nz

www.abcshuttle.co.nz

Hello,

 

So have you contacted this company yet ?

 

Eric

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On 1/8/2020 at 4:19 AM, Mike From Syd said:

Hi Eric,

 

I have not done Hobbiton and even though I have not seen most of the movies I went to the Weta Workshop in Wellington and found the tour quite interesting. We were shown a lot of props, costumes and got to learn how they made some of them. There was also a room where we were allowed to take photos and there was a man working on a sculpture that actually stopped and explained what he was doing.

 

Also in Wellington I went to Te Papa museum which had a lot of traditional Maori artifacts and huge figures showing scenes from war which were actually made by Weta Workshop.

 

I also did the tour of parliament which was the least interesting of my day out in Wellington.

 

In Auckland I did a local tour (not from ship) called Auckland Free Walking Tour. It went for about 2.5 hours, is easy to find when you get off the tender and its an easy cheap activity - most people gave a $5 donation at the end of the tour. They are volunteers after all. The lady running the tour was quite informative and friendly and she offered sunscreen. I'm not sure if the link will come through, but here it is:

https://www.afwt.co.nz/aboutus

 

It was actually good to see the silvery glow of the worms in the dark of the cave (at Bay of Islands). I don't think we have anything like that in Australia, but forests and bush - we have plenty of that. Unfortunately a lot of it is on fire lately. Another thing is you are not allowed to take photos in the cave.

 

What other stops is the ship making? Do you have questions about the ship?

 

Mike

Hello Mike,

 

Here are our stops :

Bay of Islands, NZ

Tauranga, NZ

Napier,NZ

Wellington, NZ

Dunedin,NZ

 

As for the ship I have study pretty much everything there should be so I am good.

 

 

Thanks

 

Sea ya

Eric

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Hi Eric,

 

At Tauranga there is a mountain that you can see from where the ship is docked. I can't remember the name of the mountain. I walked up this mountain and took lots of photos of the beautiful views of the beaches below and of the ship, as well as the sheep that I passed along the way. Make sure you take water with you and remember sun protection if you choose to do this - which is good advice for all of the ports you go too.

 

I had a tour of Larnach Castle booked for Dunedin, but our itinerary was changed and we went to Picton instead.

 

Mike

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14 hours ago, nimiq said:

Hello,

 

So have you contacted this company yet ?

 

Eric

 

No, as there seem to be a number of options, we have not decided which option we will choose.

 

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