A tour with a difference today
The boss is away, that being the wife Xiaoli so right now I need do a bit of everything. The multi day tours are quiet right now as far as actually doing them, but route planning and submitting quotes full on.
The accommodation beach front Ninety Mile Beach Xiaoli normally runs but she is away in China for a month holidaying with a friend. Traditionally its quiet now but that phone went yesterday afternoon and although I offered to book the 5 men elsewhere they had seen our accommodation on the website and they were insistent that was where they want to stay. So drop everything and over to the beach. Clean 2 units and make 5 beds. Not a job I can say I love. But did it.
For today the 5 wanted to go on the beach bus so I book it. It turns out they were to be the only 5 on the bus and being from Guangzhou almost no English. So I volunteer since I have a little understanding of Cantonese and Mandarin, plus my mate was driving. So I go as interpreter and guide. A change to sit high in a purpose built 4wd bus versus my own 4wd I also do beach tours in.
Its fortunate I live with a Chinese wife plus most guests are from China so over the years I have learnt to understand maybe more than a little. We had a great day. Weather was okay given it is still winter and any rain squalls seem to wait until we were inside the bus each time. I took my dog Li Li with us. She is one of the most travelled dogs in the north of New Zealand joining on most tours I do.
Today we were to travel up the beach. Tide was outgoing but still well up the beach when we first drove on to it. 77 km up the beach to the exit at Te Paki Stream. We stopped a few times for the customary photographs. No need for sand boards today so no risk of injuries occurring. A very relaxed trip to Cape Reinga.
Since it was only my group on board and I knew it was low tide 1pm I gave them the option of the beach or road for the return trip. They chose the beach. No objection from us as it is the shorter and straight route versus road.
My mate Robin tells me in all the years he has been driving the beach buses he has never driven the beach both ways. The reason being he has a set route plus normally a mix of groups aboard. Only my 5 people so they and I could decide. Robin came back saying that was his easiest day ever. He never had to talk as tour guides do. I did it for him but slowly to the one with some English and then he in turn translated.
The group were laid back but I explained to Robin when you are doing what we do, personal tours, you get more one on one with your people. Its different. He loved it. My next aim is to convince him to join us doing tours down country. Like me, he knows it well. But I don’t think he is going to buy into that idea.
Want a Ninety Mile Beach tour, Harrisons are great but still even better is our own 4 wd tours. A bus with today being an exception, you are just one of many. With us it is just you and anybody with you.
Our tours are on our website. But talk to us about the whole of New Zealand.