North on One

7:00pm Sunday, February 27 on TV One

After exploring the wild south in his last television series, Lush has gone to the other extreme of the country for his next show, North.

Travelling up the east side of the country and down the west, taking in the Far North and Cape Reinga, visiting the Islands of the Gulf, and telling the stories of the great harbours of the Manukau, Hokianga, Kaipara and the Waitemata, before concluding ten weeks later with an idiosyncratic A to Z of Auckland in classic Lush style.

In episode three Lush is in Hokianga – which he ponders can sometimes feel like a separate state of New Zealand. Plus he has a lesson in horse riding and astronomy, and fails to avoid being sentimental about Opo the dolphin.

Tonight Lush begins his travels along the west coast from Bayleys beach, through the Waipoua Forest, to Opononi, and finally to the North Hokianga Heads.

In Bayleys beach his first stop is an observatory which he informs us is, “home to New Zealand’s largest telescope.”

Canadian born astronomer, Deborah Hambey, who is the creator and operator of the observatory tells Lush, “I’d heard the astronomy is so good here [in New Zealand], in fact you have the best of every class of object, the best galaxies, the best globular clusters, the best nebular. You’ve go the best of everything!” she exclaims.

While spying an imprint on the moon caused by a meteorite through the telescope Lush says, “I came up here to fall in love with Northland – but actually I have seen a gash in the moon.”

Over in the Waipoua Forest the theme of nature is reinforced. Lush stands in awe of the large Kauri tree named Tane Mahuta (the father of forests and of all things that inhabit them). He says, “to most New Zealanders this would be the one must see. Forget parliament or where the treaty was signed. I think this is New Zealand’s absolute knockout.”

Next Marcus travels through Rawinin to Opononoi where he revisits the timeless tale of Opo the dolphin. Despite the fact he feels this tale has been ‘done’ so many times before, Marcus is moved by the people that have bonded with the creature.

Missed an episode of North? Full episodes are available online. Go to and click the ‘Ondemand’ button.

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