New Zealand Part II – South Island to North Island

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The picture above was taken while we were sitting in a cafe, in the sunshine, having a beer, watching the sea plane take off….

OK, this started off as a bit of a monologue, but I have now hopefully made it a bit sharper!

  1. Where in NZ have we been? (in post I covered Christchurch, Dunedin, Otago, Oamaru)
  2. What parts do we recommend? Really just about everywhere…
  3. What was good and what was dodgy? All good so far…
  • Fantastic seal watching south of Kaikoura screenhunter_03-nov-14-22-36
  • Update 14 November 2016, this area has been devastated by earthquakes over the past few days. Part of the road and the trainline north has been swept away.
  • Marlborough Wine Tasting was great. We just went round vineyards at random. The Kirow vineyard in Otago was really helpful. On hearing we were heading for Blenheim, and given our tastes for wine they recommended some wineries for us to go and see. This led to great discussions at the wineries we did visit. All were fantastic. whichever you go to, you will get well looked after. You can get a Blenheim wine map here
  • A night in Picton staying in GrandVue. Be aware Picton has lots of hills!. We drove up to the GrandVue, dropped our stuff off, and then went back to the car hire to drop the car off. We grabbed some food and then wandered back up the hill. Russell and Rosalie were super hosts, and Russell even got up early just to take us to the ferry. How kind is that?? We knew we would miss breakfast, but there was fruit, biscuits and coffee in the room (I wish I had known Rosalie was a keen quilter, we could have swapped notes). As for the place. Check out their website, we had the balcony with bar-b-q, and had a lovely hour or two sitting there before the sun vanished. Stunning views, and a lovely room. Immaculate. We enjoyed it so much we stayed with them again! Twice to date, maybe another time to come this next trip. Here’s a view from their place in Picton – stunning.

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Ferries

There are two ferries between Picton and Wellington, the Bluebridge

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and the Interislander
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With hindsight and several trips under our belt, I prefer the Bluebridge. Fewer people, but we may just have been lucky with the time of year. You can see from the pictures (slightly blurred, I apologise) but the Interislander is very much a passenger ferry, where the Bluebridge has a lot less accommodation

So far nothing dodgy – next post – North Island next….

 

 

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