S: NEW ZEALAND 2010
BC: AND THE SUN SETS ON A MEMORABLE VACATION
1: After 28 hrs of travel, we arrived in Auckland. From our room we watched folks walk the perimeter of the SKY TOWER
2: Walked from Rydges Hotel to Albert Park and were in awe of the amazing Chinese lanterns, celebrating the New Year.
3: Took ferry to Devonport. Hiked to top of Mt Victoria, hearing cicada like chirping. Unique tree with limbs growing DOWN to the ground. And folks think WE have a steep driveway!!
4: Ceillhe Sperath gave us a personal Auckland Tour. Saw extinct volcano, Auck. neighbourhoods, and gardens. Had a picnic lunch near her home. Highlights were the Black beach and Gordon Mclean summit hike
6: p pa | the bar at our hotel must have been named for our boys (same initials)
7: Jeff & Naomi are our hosts at Centre Pointe Hotel in Christchurch.. Did laundry, had wine & cheese on our patio | Met Kathy & Mike Kelly at Copenhagen Bakery. Fun visit. Then we went to one of the many internet cafes to stay connectecd with friends & family .
8: Relaxing by the Avon river. Mural in favorite, Valentino's Restaurant.
9: Listened to the amazing choir in the 1881 Cathedral. Metal Chalice built to acknowledge the millenium.
10: Above: Cathedral Square is hub bub of activity. Below: crosswalks were challenging with crossing diagonally and and traffic on the "wrong side of road
11: BOTANICAL GARDENS
12: FESTIVAL OF FLOWERS This vertical meadow embraces the Kiwi notion of "We'll do it tomorrow, mate, as long as fish aren't biting or the kids don't have sports." Good Plan, i would say!!
15: starting our drive down east coast of south island | Had yummy fish n chips in Omaru. Purchased good cheese at Whitestone factory
16: Moeraki...Boulders eroded from mudstone cliffs. On to view seals at Shag Point
17: Dunedin hotel across from Cadbury Facotory!! Favorite dinner at Etrusco's (plus 2 bottles of wine) | Found Stanley's Woman!! But she wasn't for sale.
18: Farmer's Market at train station. Lovely ladies made lovely crepes for our breakfast. Decided Markets are pretty similar, world wide.
19: Below is view of Dunedin from Mt. Cargill. We broke rule and drove to top of Baldwin. View is from inside our car!! yikes
20: Elm tour involved STEEP hiking, but worth it to see yellow eyed penguins & hooker | seals. They chased us down the beach. And the AMAZING albatross soaring overhead
22: One of our favorite of MANY very steep hikes in this amazing country.
24: easy for them to say!
25: 4.5hour drive to Te Anu. Farm after farm,sheep after sheep. Stayed at Campbell Autolodge. Did i mention all the sheep we saw today!? Te Anu reminds us of Lake Chelan area.
26: Ray drove our 11 passenger van to Milford Sound. We stopped at Mirror Lake, Lake Gunn, and Marian Falls. He navigated the one lane 1.5 Km very steep Homer Tunnel very well.
28: Waterfalls we saw along the way. Lynne standing on boat under a falls. Yes, we got that close!!!!
34: So much fun. Came SO close to rocks, sped thru depths of only 10mm.
35: Queenstown is the adrenalin city of New Zealand, This is the site of the first commercial bungy jumping business, est. by AJ Hackett, 1988
37: Queenstown Gardens, the Bay and view of city from Lomond Lodge
39: A quick stop in old Chinese mining town, Arrowtown, and then through miles of rolling hills to Lake Tekapo. The stunning turquoise colour comes from rock flour sediment. Made like the kiwis and stopped for tea and scones. Church of the Good Shepherd built in 1935.
40: Rainy day travel to N. Island town of Hahei, stayed with hosts Jill & Graeme at the Cathedral Court B&B | Full English breakfast served on patio. fascinating green somethings in yard
41: Off we went, armed with shovels, to Hot Water Beach. At low tide, you dig, dig, dig, and are rewarded with thermal temperature water in | your personal spa pool | That evening, Graeme, invited us to enjoy N.Z. beer & wine and participate in lively conversation!!!
42: Hahei Beach was our favorite. A 5 min. walk from B&B, so few people, | and ALL that white sand and stunning water and cliffs. oooh to go back, someday
43: On to Cathedral Cove Beach. It's thru the black arch. Is a 40min. hike down & UP. Geesh. But so worth the shortness of breath & effort | View of Hahei Beach from Car Park at Cathedral Cove
44: the sign is saying DO NOT enter, but is seems to be just a guidline. lol
45: saw lots of these spider nests. geesh | fresh fish auction in field
46: OREO COWS | DEER THAT ACTUALLY STAY IN PENNED AREAS
48: Mt. Maunganui, which we will of course climb | Beach outside our room. Wherever will we put our towels?? | Elaine & Jim were our hosts at Beachside B&B | Wayne chillin' on our deck
49: It was 1 1/2 hrs UP & 1 hr. down.. Along the trail we talked to people from Aust., Germany & Canada. The 360 degree view from top was breathtaking
50: water was cold, but we adapted. Elaine doesn't often have someone to join her in the fun waves, so she was thrilled to join us
51: Drive to Rotorua
52: Touristy, but we learned at lot at the Mitai Maori village. We enjoyed Hangi dinner and ploy. Our most entertaining host led us on a night walk to see nocturnal Kiwis & gaze at the Southern Cross | long hot walk took us thru Kuirau Park & mud pools, to Ohinemutu, original maorin village with amazing carvings.
53: Entrance to our room in 'Rotorua. We learned more than we ever wanted to know about the 19 kinds of sheep at the Agrodome. Watched a lightning speeed sheering of a sheep.
54: Wai-o-tapu, is like our Yellowstone, on a smaller scale. Mud pots, fumeroles and steam pools
56: Stopped at Taupo for lunch. Wayne ordered Caesar Salad---- was not expecting a poached egg!! The metal disc is in lieu of meter maids. Saw lots of Pampass grass on our travels.
57: Loved our cabin at Creel Lodge (that's a creel at left) Trout fishing capital of North Island. | Drizzly walk along river and yummy BBQ'd steak dinner
58: Unique room at Billy Black's Hobbitown | wild turkeys | These goats and pigs were actually on our ROOF!!
60: we loved our hike near Arunui Cave. | oh boy!! we will be there in about a week!
61: SpellBoundGlowworm Cave Tour was fascinating. 30min. tour via boat, underground to view the glow worms. Mesmerizing. Then a tea & biscuit break. Onto a dry cave tour. It was dark & scary due to spiders on wall. Wayne being the compassionate soul, he is, was rubbing my back, to keep connected. BUT, it was Judy's back he was rubbing. She being a polite aussie, wasn't sure what to do. We had a good laugh over that.
62: We were the only people on this hike that took us through a natural arch & | as we've come to expect...... lots of elevation gain
63: yes, that's lynne WAY down there. | MARAKOPA FALLS
64: Raglan Backpackers. Hostel type lodging with communal kitchen & lav. Yummy newspaper wrapped fish & chips
65: sitting on pier in Warkworth | And i thought Canadians were polite!!!!! | how cute is this mailbox?!!
66: Spontaneous stay at Beaulah Heaven's. We were greeted with a bottle of wine.... how cool is that? We sipped our wine on Snell's Beach as we watched boats being towed in during low tide.
67: Great example of N.Z. hospitality: After dinner, at the Salty Dog, Beulah's neighbours, Tony & Val | invited us over for homemade ice cream. Beulah was gone for evening excursion to view owls
68: In this area, we explored Goat Island (great snorkeling), Matheson Beach, (very few people), & Tawharanui Reserve
73: Hundertwasser's loo. Most photgraphed toilets in N.Z. Lots of wavy lines, decorated with ceramic mosaics & brightly coloured bottles with grass & plants on the roof | Wayne made a great effort to try all these beers
74: Appledore B&B, in Paihai, was our favorite accommodation | Jim & Janet, were our English hosts. Great pool, note the awesome 2 person lounger. Above is example of lovely landscaping
75: view from our room
76: A lovely river walk | Haruru Falls
78: In Opua, we saw a "sign" from home. A bit north is Waitangi, 1840 site of treaty between Maori chiefs & British govt. Russell is a short ferry ride away from Paihai. Yummy outdoor lunch.
79: In Opua, we saw a "sign" from home. Just north of here is Waitangi, 1840 site of treaty signing between Maoria & British govt. lovely outdoor lunch in Russell, a short ferry ride from Paihai | Fuller catamaran tour included going thru the Hole in the Rock. Captain does a great job navigating a small opening
80: ONE more steep hike on Urupukapuka Is. | We were so fast on the ascent & descent, Wayne had time to read some history before catamaran headed home | still smiling after the hike up
81: Drove to west coast & thru the Waipoua Forest. Dense ferns that almost envelope the roads
83: It's difficult to portray the immense size of these 2000yr old Kauri trees
84: Short climb to a vista that included a view of the Tasman Sea
85: The drive back to Auckland
86: random photos i forgot to include earlier | we laughed as we watched these guys frolic, that is until one started chasing us!!