A message in a bottle launched eight years ago from Whangārei Harbour has been found by a family in northern Spain.
Jana Joy's son Julian, who was aged seven at the time, placed a letter with his name, age and address in a clear glass wine bottle and launched it into the sea at Tamaterau.
Last month the Whangārei Heads-based family received a response from a German woman, Luisa, whose mother found the bottle while holidaying in Mundaka on the Atlantic coast of Spain.
Ms Joy says she was gobsmacked.
"We’d forgotten all about the bottle because it was eight years ago and we were just so excited to find out it had made it anywhere," she says.
"We never thought it would get out of Whangārei Harbour."
Ms Joy says on receiving the letter she immediately made contact with the family on Facebook.
The bottle has now been re-launched into the ocean off the coast of Britain.
"Luisa’s sister is in the Navy so she went out to the North Sea and they launched it back out from there with Julian’s letter back in the bottle, along with a letter of theirs."
Ms Joy says while the recent events have been heart-warming, she hopes it doesn’t prompt people to take similar actions.
"There’s already a lot of garbage out there in the ocean, I think glass is better than plastic maybe, but I’m just conscious we don’t need any more out there."