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It is the small surprises that are often the most memorable whist travelling in New Zealand.

I strolled along a quiet winding track an unforgettable sight appeared. Emerging out of the green forest of vines and ferns was an immense, crazy limestone maze of eerie rock formations. Weird and wonderful just waiting to be discovered – eat your heart out Indiana Jones.

Squeezing through pathways between deep crevices and split rocks there was another astonishing surprise. Perched proudly on the top of the bare crags were tall trees, their 40 ft roots curling down over the rocks like rough octopus tentacles.

They offered incredible display of bright red foam like flowers.

These I now know are Rata Trees, otherwise known as the New Zealand Christmas tree. A short magical fairy tale adventure.

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