When mentioning our travel plans to locals in Auckland, we quickly learned that we had no idea how to pronounce the city we would be spending a week in. Rotorua, pronounced "roh-toh-roo-uh", is set among a collection of calderas-turned-lakes and restless geothermal activity, and is a major adventure-sports hub.
Like little birds queued to take their first chance at flight, our guides gently nudged us out of the "nest" one by one onto a seemingly precarious length of PVC pipe. Perched with wide eyes, tethered to nothing but rope and hope, it was all air between us and the floor of the cave entrance 330 feet below. "Is it too late to back out?" we both thought in unison as we smiled nervously at each other.
"Ok everyone, off the platform!" said the lead guide, sending our hearts and minds racing.