I enjoyed an extremely scenic drive to FitzRoy from my place in Tryphena on Wednesday to pick up two mates. My friends from Germany have already seen quite a bit of New Zealand during their (work-)holidays but were very keen to experience the beauty of Aotea (Great Barrier Island) and to actively take part in the island lifestyle. The ferry from Auckland to Port FitzRoy arrived a bit early and while they were having a few beers and watching the locals picking up various freight for themselves and their businesses, I was still on the road, taking pictures and enjoying the drive.
It is about a 50 km drive from Tryphena to FitzRoy and you should allow for at least an hour to get there. I do, however, recommend to taking it a bit slower, it might take you 2 hours, but there are just too many scenic spots and areas to sit down, relax and enjoy the massive views along the way, that it would be a bit of a shame if you hurried through the narrow and steep roads without taking regular breaks. Apropos roads, they are in part very narrow and the driver must account for oncoming traffic and stay as far as possible on the left hand side. It’s easy to adopt a slightly careless attitude, trying to get a good look at the coastlines and canyons, and end up causing an unnecessary, expensive accident. Be cautious, do the right thing, take it easy and drive carefully, there could always be a 6 wheeler truck coming into a tight corner or a person pedalling hard on the bicycle to get up the hills. Don’t cut the median line, which is most of the time not even present, it is easy to do so without really noticing it whilst taking right turns.
Enjoy the following 20 scenic pictures, they will certainly lift your mood and you might just have a look at your savings account and start planning your (next) trip to Great Barrier Island.