Wednesday, 27 November 2013

More from New Zealand

I have been editing - at last - the photos I took in New Zealand - far too many -  but it is such a picturesque country I couldn't help myself.  Remember you can click to enlarge any of the photos.

 Lunch at a picnic area on the Clutha river, driving from Queenstown to Dunedin.
 We visited the Royal albatross sanctuary to see the albatrosses and were very lucky - the wind was very strong (it always is in NZ) and the birds were flying.  I took lots of photos of clouds, but managed to include an albatross a couple of times!
 Our guide was very excited.  We watched these two birds from a hide - they were only a couple of metres away, and the female had only arrived in the previous hour.  Apparently the male arrives first and checks out the nest from the previous year, then the female comes a day or so later.  they spend a day or so preening and courting before she lays on or two huge eggs - it would be like us having a baby weighing about 30 lbs!  How awful.

 This is the Albatross colony taken from the other side of the bay.
 Port Chalmers taken from the Rhododendron Dell Garden, a lovely place.
 Scenery nearby - typical of much of the South Island

 Bill and Barb in a very misty and cold entrance to Dunedin Botanic Gardens
 A view from one of the very steep hills in the gardens
 and of course lots of rhododendrons!
 Dunedin was originally going to be called Edinburgh and they built structures resembling Scottish architecture - this is the railway station

 The First Church of Otago (Presbyterian) is apparently a replica of the cathedral in Edinburgh.  It is really lovely.
 In Christchurch we were taken on a guided tour of a beautiful garden, Mona Vale.  Unfortunately, the home has been badly damaged by the earthquakes, but thankfully you can still walk safely in the gardens

 As part of the Walking Guides conference we were also taken on a punt ride on the Avon River

Wonderful way to see the Gardens, but my limbs had frozen solid and I didn't think I was going to be able to get out of the punt at the end of the trip!

 We were also taken on a bus trip to Arthur's Pass, in the mountains on the way to Greymouth on the western side of NZ.  We did the train trip the last time we were there but the bus route shows different country again.  They call these rivers 'braided rivers' because of the way they flow
 Christchurch was fine and sunny, but up here the rain came don, not heavy, but very wet and cold.  Some of the delegates braved the walk, I didn't go far at all and this is Bill giving up also!
 This new viaduct takes the heavy traffic over the ranges
 Thank goodness we were able to go walking in this area - real Hobbit country!  I loved all the moss and lichens on the trees
 The grey, misty day made it even more effective
 These tiny flowers were growing in moss at the foot of one of the trees, but nobody could identify them for me.
 This is for my farming friends - New Zealand farmers practise strip or cell grazing in a big way, both with sheep and cattle. 
This photo has loaded in the wrong place.  We saw this kea when we stopped to look at the viaduct at the top of the pass - it was almost as bedraggled as we were, but it was coming over to see what it could get from the tourists!  They are very destructive birds and tear anything left on the outside of parked cars to bits.  They are quite funny to watch though.
You must be tired of this by now.  I will load the last few photos in another few days, then New Zealand will just be a lovely memory.  Christmas is coming far too quickly, I need to change course.


  1. Great photos and memories. I have a foul cold and feel miserable
    One thing after another.

  2. Not tired of your wonderful photos at all. I can see similarities to various European places in many of them - New Zealand must be such a beautiful country full of surprises and fascinating flora, fauna and birds.

  3. Thank you for taking the time to share your trip with us Robin. I agree with Heather - not tired of the photos at all.

  4. Beautiful sights and memories you've shared. Thank you.

  5. Photographs to treasure - everyone I know who has been to NZ says what a wonderful place it is.


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