So… What do you do for fun, here in the north? Horse rides!

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It’s been 2 years this January just gone, that I have lived in the beautiful Far North of Northland, affectionately known as ‘the Real Far North’ and it also certainly lives up to it’s affectionate name, as it is real far! Far from…. everything.  It’s a well-kept secret from many (heck, I barely even noticed the constant sunshine icon on the nightly weather report on the news before I applied for a job up here!) This place has the most stunning beaches and coastlines to brag of, possibly all over the country.

I’ve hosted many couchsurfers since moving up here. And the most common question I’d say I get asked, is “so what is there to do around here?”  The truth is,the age old infamous saying “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know” proves to be ultimately true in these parts!

Case in point, my boyfriends parents own horses and often go on rides, and extend the offer, which I have passed on to visitors as well, such as my friend Mel, who often goes with them while I’m working. Their rides have ranged from the simple beginner ride, through the farm and down the beach – to more advanced routes which involve ducking your way through Tea-Tree forests uphill, trekking across sand dunes, wading through horse-knee deep water and across wet rocks, plodding through paddocks, and sometimes even an actual trail.  I’ve been on large group rides with them, as well as with just the two of them or some of their friends. It’s definitely a different way to see the unique terrain.

Riding the beautiful old Wahine
on 90 Mile Beach, December 2010
December 2010 on the beach
The lovely Sharen [Thom's mum, owner of horses]
Post-one of many falls
Atop the hill on Lovell’s Farm, next to the dunes
Amongst the Tea Trees
Mid-stream at Shipwreck Bay

Now to the average traveller, you too could come to Ahipara and ride a beautiful horse down 90 Mile Beach! Ahipara Treks will take you out, but for a price.

Edit: I have since learned that the owner of Ahipara Treks is AMAZING, a local school teacher that runs the rides on the side! Where she finds the time, I couldn’t tell you.

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