Thermal Therapy

New Zealand, Octopus Tales — By on April 13, 2011 9:34 PM

I mentioned a few posts back about an accident I had on a boat that resulted in me injuring my rib area. A week after the incident I was still in such pain that it hurt to sneeze. laugh, or lay on my side. I decided to go to a doctor (NZ has an excellent socialized health care system btw!). The doc pushed hard around my rib cage and my screams and tears led him to recommend an x-ray. Even though I knew there was nothing that could be done for a broken rib, I still wanted to know if it was broken so I would know how long I could expect to be in pain (and not be able to kitesurf).

Good news was my rib was not broken, severely bruised with a possible small fracture but I could expect to be better in 2-3 weeks. And apparently you now get to take home a CD with images of your xray.

In the meantime, Thomas and I decided to explore the thermal regions south of Auckland where I enjoyed some much needed Thermal Therapy!

We drove Octopus along the Coromandel Peninsula (gorgeous!) spending a day at Hot Water Beach. The name comes from underground hot springs which filter up through the sand between the high and low water tidal reaches. Within two hours either side of low tide you can dig into the sand creating your own hot water pool.

One downside of traveling by the seat of your skirt is that you can just miss an event because of non-planning.We neglected to check the tide times the day we headed to the beach and as a result we arrived at high tide when it is impossible to dig a hole because there is no beach. The next low tide was at 1:00 am so we decided it would be more fun anyway to dig a hole at night when no one else was around. We rented a movie and bought a bottle of wine to keep us entertained until it was time to dig. In hindsight the bottle of wine was a bad idea as we dozed off and once again missed low tide.

So the next day we headed out to the beach before low tide in search of the perfect spot to dig our hot water pool. Some spots were way too hot to enter as the temperatures can reach as hot as 147 degrees farenheit. It felt so good to soak my aching rib in the hot hot water.

Hot Water Beach - Coromandel Peninsula

After spending a very relaxing afternoon in our hot tub on the beach we went for a hike to Cathedral Cove.

Cathedral Cove

The next day we drove south along the coast to the Bay of Plenty and then headed west to Lake Taupo.

In Taupo we walked through a thermal zone called Craters of the Moon.

Craters of the Moon

We found a “hot spot” outside of town where a steaming hot waterfall runs into a chilly river. It was a cool sensation to move between very hot and very cold water.

Hot Spot near Taupo

To see more photos CLICK HERE.

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