Not all who wander want to be found 🍂

First Sunrise of the World (Te Araroa) 🇳🇿

A travel friend told us about heading to East Cape Lighthouse in Gisborne to be the first few in the world to see the sunrise for that day.

Once we heard that, we were INSTANTLY SOLD. I mean, how often do you get to boast that you’ve actually been the first to greet the sun?!?!

With East Cape Lighthouse located at the most Eastern tip of New Zealand and standing at 154m above sea level, you’d be embracing a new day with strong winds and a drop-dead gorgeous view.

Te Araroa Holiday Park

Didn’t even book a place to stay at cause we were torn over the lack of choices and we were sort of ready to camp out in the car.

We drove to Te Araroa Holiday Park to enquire and decided on spending the night there at NZ$50/ night for a basic cabin – shared toilet facilities – (with no bed linen). No bed linen?! How odd. Thankfully we had scarves to use as a base layer.

One of the better ‘convenient’ places we could find.

Not the best place to stay at but hey, at that price and in the middle of almost nowhere we were good with anywhere we could rest our heads.

Basic 4-bed cabin. To be honest, I found it pretty neat but they need to do some serious maintenance. The cabin was pretty dusty and had a strong musky smell.





Drove out to explore the small town of Te Araroa.
Very humble abode; calling it an early night. We had to be up around 3++am! Sunrise is around 5.45am?
We had to capture this moment – suffering in the cold. I was FREEZING in the middle of the night despite being indoors.

26 October 2015, Monday

Ended my suffering of not being able to sleep in peace at 3am. XM was up early as well cause it was too cold!

Gathered our stuff and hit the road at 4am. It’s about an hour’s drive from the holiday park to East Cape Lighthouse. The roads were dark and very gravelly so we gave ourselves a buffer to make the sunrise in time.

Made it just in time! You have to climb about 700 STEPS UP TO THE TOP just the reach the lighthouse! I just found out it’s 700 STEPS. NO WONDER I WAS SO BREATHLESS.
26 Oct’s sun starting to peep out. So cloudy though!
Hello, gorgeous!
Just wow.
Everyone busy snapping away (in awe).
Terrific start to the day! So blessed and grateful.
Unexpected morning workout.

Random sights along the way out of the lighthouse.
“Watchu starin’ at?”

Definitely a must-must-must-do if you’re in North Island New Zealand. It’s one to cross off the bucket list or your list of ‘firsts’!

Though it’s pretty much quite out of the way, I’m really glad we made the trip and planned our itinerary around coming all the way to East Cape Lighthouse just to witness this.

I could do this everyday but maybe not the 700 steps. (Photo: XM)

Next up: visiting Tolaga Bay Wharf (NZ’s longest wharf) + rock sliding in Gisborne.

Read more about my previous adventures in New Zealand here:

Till then!




9 responses to “First Sunrise of the World (Te Araroa) 🇳🇿”

  1. […] 1st Sunrise of the World (Te Araroa): 25 – 26 Oct […]


  2. […] Up next (I’m pretty excited to talk about this again): our stay in Te Araroa + being one of the first few to watch the sun rise! […]


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