In Maori, "kaka" is parrot, and "riki" is small. "Pae" means perch. So Paekakariki is "parakeet's perch". This tiny town of 1,600 is about 25 miles north of Wellington and at one time was a significant railroad hub. Nowadays it's a sleepy little hamlet with an awesome beach. The railroad station still exists as a metro hub for commuters working in the city. We chose this town as the ideal place to take in the ambience of the North Island while maximizing our opportunities to relax on the beach. Our little "bach" (Kiwi for beachhouse) was mere steps from the water, while a 5 minute walk took us to the rail station if we wanted to visit Wellington.