Cape Reinga is the end of the road. Cape Reinga is 100km north of a small town called Kaitaia and about a 3 hour drive from Paihia. Cape Reinga is the most north westernmost tip of the Aupouri Peninsula. Cape Reinga is spiritual to the Maori and is also special because the two oceans collide. (Tasman Sea meets Pacific Ocean). It is also famous for the lighthouse a popular photo spot for tourists.
When you arrive at the car park close to the lighthouse and see all the tour buses parked up and everyone heading in crowds to the lighthouse they are truly missing out on all the other beauty around by jumping straight back on that bus.
There is heaps of walks around the area and the one I had in mind was the Twilight Loop but being spontaneous me and best mate Bob found a spot in the distance decided to go there. Our walk started off super easy, down stairs to a beautiful secluded beach. We then had to work our way around the rocks due to the high tide with the waves coming in (and if we were not careful then one step wrong we could fall and get bashed against the rocks). If I was by myself I would definitely have turned around but my mate guided me step by step. We then reached a deserted beautiful white sandy beach that stretched out for miles. Walking along that empty beach just me and my best mate with the waves coming in clearing our footpaths in the sand was something special that I will never forget!
We then climbed massive hills, (small in the grand scheme of things but massive to us). We were truly unprepared with only 500ml of water between us in scorching hot sunshine. I never realised how much of a mission it was going to be but we were determined to get to the top and it was so worth it because the view was stunning.
Coming back we went a slightly different route and encountered many types of terrain. It was fun, we slid down sand dunes holding hands filling our shoes with buckets of sand. We felt like we were at a desert at one point then later climbing through masses of flax to get the beach before making our way to the rocks and steep hill and many stairs back to the beginning.
16km later, about a 5 hour trip I was covered in scratches, exhausted, massively dehydrated and slightly sunburnt – but it was all worth it.
This has to be one of the toughest hikes I have ever done but right now I truly feel like I have achieved something amazing. You can go on a bus trip to Cape Reinga and tours are good. but you don’t get that feeling of you freedom.
New Zealand is beautiful. I am so grateful to be here. So get out there and make your own journey and stop following the crowd. Follow your own spirit of adventure!