It certainly feels like we've been everywhere in the last few days. We've been busy. We have been in and out of coverage so I couldn't write about our adventures until now.
We spent a beautiful day in Dunedin doing all the sightseeing/touristy things. We had a look around the city and I especially loved all the old buildings. We spent some time at the Railway Station which is just lovely. We also climbed Baldwin Street which is the steepest street in the World. By the time this was done our legs felt like jelly. You can see from the photo it's really a long way up.
We went on an adventure to Lenarch Castle which is truly beautiful. If you're down that way I do suggest a visit.
We also drove out to the Albatross colony, we didn't go inside the visitor's centre but were lucky enough to see them circling high above us.
After that we met up with my cousin and his two boys and walked down a very steep track and sand dunes (easy on the way down but not so much on the way up) to see some Yellow Eyed Penguins. What a treat!
When we awoke the next morning to threatening clouds so we quickly packed up the tents (we're getting pretty quick at it now) and got on our way to Queenstown. Unfortunately, the weather didn't hold and it poured with rain the whole way there making it impossible to see the landscape. There was much debate about whether we should find a cabin instead of tenting but as we drove into Queenstown the sun came out and so the tents went up. It was really cold in Queenstown and we were exhausted from the previous busy days so we really didn't do very much. It's also very expensive so once we'd had a bit of a look around we were happy to blob out and read in the lounge at the campground. Andy and Jesse went up on the Gondola and did the Luge. We spent two nights in Queenstown before moving onto Haast.
It was our intention to leave Queenstown and drive all the way to Hokitika but we got sidetracked along the way. We stopped at Wanaka which was beautifully warm (the long sleeves came off and the summer wear went on). Wanaka was stunning and it's definitely on our list of places to return to. We visited Puzzleworld which was fun. We got lost in the maze with everyone else who was there. They have an illusions gallery which we enjoyed although we all felt a little queasy by the time we left.
Haast is a tiny place full of sandflies. We stayed at a backpackers here. We were all so tired (the two previous nights we hadn't had any sleep because of the strong winds in Queenstown) so a real bed was a welcome comfort.
Next on the agenda was Hokitika where we thought we'd stay the night but didn't. We travelled on to Greymouth and really enjoyed the beautiful sunny weather and campground there except that it was really close to the highway so very noisy. The hosts were lovely and even helped fix our power cable (which turned out to be user error but I won't mention that!).
JENNA'S NOT ENJOYING HERSELF!
Today we travelled up through Westport to Nelson. The scenery on this side was just as stunning as going through the mountains but just in a different way. We stopped at the swing bridge over the Buller River - I didn't go across but you can see from the look on Jenna's face how much she enjoyed it. It was raining again today so we didn't stop to do much along the way. As we came over the hilltop for our first glimpse of Nelson we all said "Aaaaaa" as Nelson was bathed in sunshine (28 degrees).
January 15, 2014