How to Behave Like Mad Tourists in Paeroa

Ok, so the last two weeks of our New Zealand’s Biggest Gap Year have been pretty Goddamn epic! But, sometimes, just sometimes, it’s necessary to have some downtime. We have some scheduled downtime today doing what we love to do best: fixing our campervan.

Before this whole year-long road trip kicked off, we bought a campervan. That campervan was old. It needed a few repairs. After weeks of DIYing the sh*t out of the camper, we succeeded to fix every appliance except the hot water. It needs some expertise by someone who knows what the hell they are doing!

Alas, the day has come! We have an appointment at a specialised RV/motorhome/campervan workshop in Paeroa. Not only is Paeroa home to Self Power, where the hot water is being fixed today, but the town is also home to L&P, New Zealand’s home-grown soft drink!

Crazy about L&P

There’s not a place in the world that is as proud of a fizzy soft drink that Paeroa is with L&P (Lemon & Paeroa). Every second shop down the town’s main street has some reference to L&P. There’s the L&P cafe, the L&P this, the L&P that… Best of all, there’s the monument to L&P at the town’s entrance, the giant L&P bottle! While Self Power take a look at our sh*t-box of a campervan, we head to the L&P bottle to take some shameless touristy photos. Don’t judge us, Ok?!

World famous in New Zealand - love it! World famous in New Zealand - love it!
Artistic shot of the day Artistic shot of the day
Robin getting a good look at the grey water hose Robin getting a good look at the grey water hose
Here's a strangely familiar scene... Here's a strangely familiar scene...

The historical DVD rental shop

So, there may be some other charms to the town of Paeroa other than the soft drink fixation. As we wander around, we can’t help but feel we have gone a little bit back in time. Not only do some of the buildings scream “1800s”, but the amount of antique stores lined with Victorian baby strollers is quite… intriguing? The most disbelieving thing we see though is the DVD rental store. Yes, DVD RENTAL STORE! These still exist in New Zealand! And people still go in them and, like, buy DVDs to rent for, like, three days, and return it, and there’s no Pirate Bay involved! What??!! We take a wander around the historical DVD rental store, picking up long-forgotten titles and remembering just how hilarious/good/horrendous these movies were. Ah, good times.

Robin vs. grey water pipe

We should probably check up on how the old campervan is doing. So we walk back to Self Power and have a bit of a chat with the owners, Catherine and David, and pick up some campervan supplies from them including a water waste pipe.

As we discovered on our day of frustration a few days ago, our grey water pipe has holes in it and the handle to release the waste water flew off in Robin’s hand. (Just some other minor issues with this friggin’ camper). Lucky for us, Self Power sells all this random campervan stuff, so we pick up what we need from the shop. (After Robin stops fighting with the pipe – see image above).

Hot water woes

Back to the hot water, Robin is keen to show David how he has already installed the water heater himself, he just can’t seem to… erm… get it to work. Awkward. After a quick look around, David discovers the wires are just plugged the wrong way around in the battery. A simple thing to fix for a simple mistake.

When it comes to testing the water heater, we realise that the water tank has not been full this whole time… The valve to fill up the water has, of course, been broken. Oh my good gracious Jesus H Christ, Shepard of Judah, Mother of Dragons! Literally… LITERALLY everything on this box has been broken. Gahhh!

All in all, the hot water tank is fixed. We have a method of filling up the water now we know it is broken. That’s all there is to say now. Let’s move on with our lives.

You’re never too old for a flying fox

Back at the holiday park, we let out our frustrations the only way we know how… Zip lining on the flying fox! Duh!

Te Aroha Holiday Park has a mean flying fox/zipline which we have been eyeing up since we arrived here a couple of days ago. Ah, simple fun…

We are now going to have drinks with the holiday park owner, Anna, and her family whilst mentally prepare ourselves for the nerd out we are going to have tomorrow. We’ll give you a clue: it involves eating dinner at the Green Dragon Tavern… Eek! See you then!

Laura and Robin

Casual flying fox fun
Casual flying fox fun Spherical Image - RICOH THETA

Want more?

We’ve been pinning our favourite novelty spots in Paeroa on HerePin, so download the app and check them out! We’ll also show our L&P fest on Instagram very soon on @BackpackerGuide.NZ!

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Comments
  1. Ready to fly Laura?

    Comment avatar Anna Blattler
    11/06/2016 at 12:37 am
  2. I took the same picture with my GF haha

    Comment avatar Bradley Nejaime
    15/06/2016 at 4:11 pm
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