Fur seals everywhere
06.02.2007 - 12.03.2007 25 °C
We arrived in Christchurch at mid-night so the first thing we did was get a beer, well it was well needed after the flight and NZ is three hours ahead of OZ, enough of the excuses.
We spent six nights in Christchurch we met my mum there on the third night. She travelled with us for five weeks. We went to the antarctic centre and froze in the snow storm tank it went down to
-26, we had to wear these rubber shoes that made your feet look twice the size and a thick red coat, I of course had to try out the ice slide with all the children while Paul and mum took horrible photo's.
We met up with our friends Sharon and Luke, they were on holiday from Jersey. We all went to a Maui night. We watched them do the haka and we had dinner there, for starter we had seafood and i decided to try an oyster as i have always wanted to try them. I slid it in my mouth and i decided I really could not swollow it so i spat it back into the shell i was holding, well they all burst out laughing, I will never live it down. We saw a kiwi they breed them there then take them to an island, they are so sweet. The art centre in Christchurch is really good it was well worth a look and the botanic garden was really good to, and some aliens had even landed there in their spaceship.
we hired out a Nissan Sunny then moved up to Woodend and stayed in a cabin in a kiwi campsite, it could of done with a bit of updating, the beds were like hammoks but hey ho! The beach there was not that nice it was covered in drift wood someone had even tried to make a house out of it.
We then drove to Hamner Spring and bathed our bones in the 36 - 41 degree sulpher pools, It was like sitting in a bowl of boiled eggs well that is what it smelt like. We then drove to Kaikoura where we stayed for three nights in a top 10 campsite in a very nice cabin with a t.v and kitchen. We went on a boat to see the sperm whales, it was really good and got loads of great photo's, only of there tails though. We saw four whales, well mum and Paul did, i only saw three as the rest of the time i had my head in a sick bag. We also saw a big pod of dusky dolphins showing off their skills. The same day me and Paul went seal swimming it was really good they swam right underneath you or next to you, but the sea was bloody freezing. We went on cliff path walk and a big black cloud came in and it rained on us, not for too long though. We did a bit of sheep watching and saw all the seals lying on their beds made out of seaweed, you have to stay about ten metres away from them though other wise they will bite.
We travelled to Nelson the town with the most sun, well that is what the weather forecast always said. We drove to Abel Tasman national park and went down to the beach and saw the rock called the split apple. All the rock were covered in black muscles there were really tiny one's and others big enough to eat, so guess what we had for dinner? you guessed it a big bag of yummy muscles. The views in the national park where really nice and the sun was shining. We also saw some wild pigs running around together on the beach, that's a first.
We got to the west coast on the 16th February. We stopped in Greymouth for a night on the way there we stopped at Buller river and walked across the very high and narrow suspension bridge which Paul found amusing to jump on, boys will be boys!! We stopped at west port and saw all the fur seals, there were some really young one's and they were all playing together in the pools. We went to Punakaiki and saw the pancake rocks, which is layers of rock on top of each other.
Hokitika is where you can buy green stone jewellery cheap so Paul bought me a nice necklace, but we decided not to wear it until we get back to Jersey as the meaning of it was new life and that is definitly not in the plan. We went to Ross town, it used to be a mining town, but they ran out of land to mine and the big hole is now a big lake.
We stayed in Franze Joseph for a couple of nights, when we arrived and emptyed the boot mum's box of wine had leaked all into Paul's backpack so it smelt like a vine yard for about a week. Paul did a full day hike in Fox glacier and Mum and I did the heli-hike. The helicopter was a bit scarey at first but was something different and the four hour walk we did on the ice was amazing. I have never seen anything like it before. I got a bit carried away with taking photo's and had to go through a very large amount, thankgod for digital camera's!
Wanaka was a nice little town the lake was lovely and the views all around of the mountains was breath taking. The cabin we stayed in was a bit grim, the carpet smelt really bad and there were quite a few spiders, but i checked them out and none of them were dodgy white tails. We went to puzzle world which was ok, you went into this room that was on a slant and if you took a photo it looked like you were leaning over really far and it tricked the eye. There was also a maze there which was quite hard, yes we did get lost and it took a while to find our way out.
Queenstown was not far away just had to drive over a few mountains and there were some really nice lookouts on the way. We also stopped off at Arrow town which is a gold mining town, so we hired out the gold panning equipment and went in search. Paul found a tiny bit of gold and i had it on my knuckle while i found somewhere to put it and it blew off my hand so the only piece of gold and i managed to loose it in the space of about 30 seconds. We went on the cable car in Queenstown, at the top was the most amazing view. The mountains called the remarkables you could see really well and they filmed part of the Lord of the Rings there. Me and Paul went on the Luge, we are such big kids. We went on the scenic route first then on the fast route twice which was a little scarey.
We drove to Te Anua next, which is close to Milford sounds. We went on a boat trip on milford sounds, we were surrounded by big mountains that have just grown out the ground. We saw some fur seals and penguins swimming along. The cabin we stayed in was ok but bloody cold, i think we almost froze that night the temp went down loads, thats what happens when you get that close to Antarctica.
Dunedin was quite a nice place we went down to the beach and saw the sea lions just lying there covering them-selves with sand. We went to Nugget point and walked to the light house, it was very windy and certainly cleared the cobs webs out, we saw more fur seals all young playing in the pools. We went to the Cadbury's world and went on the tour, we got some yummy free chocolate. The same evening we went on a tour to see seals, sea lions, yellow eyed penguins and Albatrose. The penguins are so cool they just washed up on the beach and waddled up the beach really slow, there were also sea lions on the same part and if the penguins realised they were there they would legg it to safety. There were some young penguins just waiting for their parents to appear. We saw two Albatrose which was great, they are sooooooooo big, it's amazing they can actually fly.
We had a very long drive to Timaru so on the way we stopped to have a look at some more fur seals and yellow eyed penguins. You just can't get bored of the seals they are very entertaining. We also stopped at the Moeraki boulders, they are big round boulders in the sand, it's just really quite strange. Timaru was a nice little town and we had a visit from a tiny kitten in our cabin he was lovely i wanted to steal him.
We spent another night in Kaikoura before we headed up to Picton to get the ferry over to the North Island. The weather had changed and it rained all the time we were there. Mum's wine had another leak in the car this time in my bag so i have a top now all different shades of red wine.