Contrary to popular belief, we are still alive. Reluctantly dragging ourselves away from the sparkling shores and sunny climes of Golden Bay, we’ve moved southward, following the wild west coast.
By the by the by, wild west is not just gimmicky alliteration. It seriously is WILD. Quick bit of trivia, 1% of New Zealand’s population live the West Coast of the South Island – although it makes up 9% of the total landmass. As we said, it gets pretty rural out here.
Movements so far: Golden Bay – Hokitika – Lake Kaniere – Lake Mahinapua – Franz Josef and Fox Glaciers – Gillespie’s Beach – Wanaka.. we know this means ABSOLUTELY nothing. Well, not yet anyway. Have a look at our marvellous map to follow the path and we promise that there will be more than a three-liner (and perhaps some photos if you’re lucky) coming very soon.
You both look like you are having a pretty good adventure!
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Before I moved to Wellington, like a lot of people before me, I’d been told that it was going to be just like a “mini-Melbourne.”
When I arrived in the middle of winter, Wellington couldn’t have seemed more different from the Melbourne of continuous art and film festivals, craft markets, hidden bars, restaurants and alleyways I remembered. Those first few weeks were a huge anti-culture shock with the constant feeling of being trapped in a tiny city that seemed to only cater to three very specific crowds of corporate (Lampton Quay and onto Thorndon), cool (Cuba Street and Mount Cook ) and cheesy (Courtenay Place). As time went by and the sun came out, I’d begun to act a bit more kiwi about the whole thing and eventually began to confess that I’d developed a little soft spot for the place.
As summer hit, something happened. It turned out that there was a lot of stuff happening over winter after all, but we didn’t see any evidence of it until now. Over the past few weeks there has been free live music at the Botanic Gardens, free outdoor films at Waitangi Park, the extremely unexpected amount of sunny days we’ve had have lead to us launch ourselves off of the waterfront ‘plank’ and the free ambulance building’s diving board, we’ve had visits from both Sea Shepherd’s Bob Barker and Greenpeace’s Rainbow Warrior, a fancy dress party to rival even the world-famous-in-the-north-of-England Wigan Boxing Day madness at the Sevens rubgy games, markets and fairs at various Wellington suburbs and now there’s what looks like it’s going to be a bloody great Fringe Festival for the next 3 weeks. Wellington, if you must insist of cramming in all of this activity into 3 months of the year, I’m going to need more time off work.
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Aside from the phenomenal scenery New Zealand has to offer, the fact that it has enjoys the opposite seasons from our cold New York City made the sun feel even sweeter and the sand feel even softer. Taken March 8th just off the Abel Tasman coastal track, Abel Tasman National Park, NZ.
Looks pretty darn good!
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Our fourth (and final) Easter in NZ was celebrated in the company of our dear Canadian comrades. After celebrating many a holiday, birthday, and festival together, and journeying quite closely with each other over these past three years, it’s hard imagine not being here for special gatherings like this.
Never easy but when the time comes, we all go forward, it’s all good!
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Photo: Ted Singer
Check out Ted Singer’s photos on Flickr !
Really beautiful shot!
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Solace in the Wind
The statue looks out over Wellington waterfront near Te Papa, New Zealand’s national museum. At first sight he looks like he might be preparing to fall into the cold, dark waters to end it all, naked, vulnerable and alone. However, from his facial expression, I think he’s simply experiencing a quiet moment by himself, testing just how powerful Wellington’s famous winds are; hopefully powerful enough to save him from tumbling into the watery depths. The artist, Max Patte, an English sculptor who worked for Weta Workshop, famous for its work on the Lord of the Rings trilogy, was inspired by the city and its elements, and its location had some personal significance for him, a place he visited when he too needed solace.
Wonderful sculpture and location.
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That party at the Winstone Club in Auckland was so bad it was good.
Interesting pants. Fun shot!
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First stop we take the ferry to Devonport, a quaint seaside village on the north shores. I immediately rechristen it Wallasey as the neighbouring ferry is going to Birkenhead. I can’t help wondering if the person who named it came from Liverpool and was likening the journey to a ferry across the Mersey. Wallasey, sorry Devonport, is a laid back place full of Victorian wooden villas, little shops, galleries and cafe bars. We give the village centre a wide berth and walk along the front in the direction of Cheltenham Beach. We take a detour on route to North Head, an old navy fort on the site of an extinct volcano. We follow the footpath to the summit, which only takes around 15 minutes, and enjoy fine views of Auckland harbour, Rangitoto Island and Cheltenham beach. Periodically we come across old guns and watch towers from when it was an active military installation. Apparently they prepared and trained for an invasion that never came.
Nice shot, must be wonderful around there!
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So I’ve been up to see Wairere Falls before but never managed to get to the top. The half way point seemed good enough, haha. But this time I wanted to get to the top. It was a great day and, compared to the other couple of times I have walked up there, it seemed easier this time. Add on an extra 40 mins and we were at the top!!!
You can see right over Matamata and the surrounding towns far below and stand on a platform, of sorts, that sits next to the waterfall so you can see down where the lookout point is half way up. I can really believe I didn’t go all the way up before but I will be doing it again before I go!!!
It’s 2 weeks until the families new Au Pair arrives, which seems crazy, and then I will have all of 2 weeks ish to help her settle in and sort my stuff out before heading back to Waiuku for Christmas!!
I’m not sure what will happen in between. Hopefully I can finish sorting out some travelling down to the south island but come May, when I need to leave the country, I will be flying to America to start a new year as an Au Pair!! No details on where yet. !’m hoping for California, hehe, but I’m filling in the application and putting down plans to get my visa sorted while I search for a family. I’m on to the next adventure and so excited but it’s hard to see other people leave and leave others behind. One day I will be back and hopefully when I turn up on their doorsteps, they’ll remember me, haha.
Great view, and good luck in America!
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The first really hot weekend we’ve had in Auckland, New Zealand since I moved here in March. We went down to Cheltenham Beach to catch the sun. The tide was low and the water was really clear and beautiful. That island you can see in the distance is Rangitoto. Beautiful day!
Beautiful day for sure and great shots!
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Taken at Campbells Bay on Auckland’s North Shore on the first summer beach day of the year, (well that was the consensus anyway)!
Looks a bit wintery but beautiful there!
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This was taken at Hot Water Beach on the Coromandel Peninsula in New Zealand on 11/14/12. At low tide you can dig down into the sand and create a shallow hot spa for a soak. Here’s a picture of my right, red toed foot and a new friend I sat down next to. If you look close you can see the rain drops in the water too.
Very interesting looking sand. Beautiful shot!
Check out more photos about the trip and Chasing Summer !