The New Zealand Page 2 (Taupo to Wellington)

Refreshed after my baked beans, I’m ready to press on with the story of our Kiwi trip before I go to get a new car battery and a new computer monitor. Just a little stuff that crapped out while we were away…

We drove from National Park out to Lake Taupo and had lunch while visiting the Craters of the Moon geothermal field. That’s all you really need to know to make sense of these shots.

taupo1.jpg codoscrater.jpg erry-crater.jpg steve-crater.jpg

Then we drove down to Napier, which really was pretty impressive. I’d heard it was an Art Deco Mecca, after having been entirely rebuilt in a great hurry after an earthquake in 1932. But these things can get exaggerated by tourist-board hype artists, so I was anticipating to see just a few old Art Deco gems in the middle of town, with lots of bandwagon-jumping Art Deco lettering in the windows of stores that were actually built in 1978.

But the truth is far better: the whole town really is Art Deco. And moreover, it somehow manages to be Art Deo in a nice, slighltly understated way, so you have to hang around for a bit to really soak it up. It’s hard to capture in photos, but these will give you an idea.

napier.jpg napier2.jpg napier3.jpg napier4.jpg

Next stop was Wellington, after quite a long drive. Once again, we spent a lot of time slobbing arond in the CBD, going to the parks, kids play areas and cultural bits and bobs, and hanging out at our apartment.

espace1.jpg woodbridge1.jpg sweetness.jpg skaterz1.jpg conductor.jpg oriental-bay.jpg

There were some ghosts in our apartment…

ghosts1.jpg

ghosts2.jpg

Wellington is nicer than Auckland by a very long way. But the weather is a bit dire. It’s called Windy Wellington and indeed, it was insanely windy the day we went to the Botanic Gardens via the cable car from Lambton Quay. We managed to catch up with our friend Michael Upton, who we met in the Solomons where he was working for AusAid. Now he’s working for NZ Aid which means – wait for it – he’s actually moved to New Zealand. By doing so, he accounted for something like 25% of the net immigration to NZ for the month of his arrival.

Here he is admiring the cable car, and also, looking a bit alarmed at the behaviour of some National Front members who were protesting about the coming Free Trade Agreement with China. Not that they are racist or anything. They just care about the plight of the common man.

train.jpg national-front.jpg

Alas, then it was time to get the train back to Auckland. Unlike the Overlander from Melbourne to Adelaide, the Overlander through North Island is not deliberately designed to crush the spirit of all those people too poor to fly. In fact it’s quite fun. And the lamb was the best thing we ate the whole time we were in NZ.

Here’s some shots from the trip. Actually, the viaduct and forest shots were taken on the drive on the way down: the rail parallels the road, so we saw the same terrain in both directions – and we even stopped in National Park for lunch.

and-she-gets-it.jpg doo-do-doo.jpg all-aboard.jpg

bridge1.jpg nice1.jpg nice2.jpg

Bye, New Zealand. We’ll be back to look at South Island at some point.

Advertisements

One thought on “The New Zealand Page 2 (Taupo to Wellington)

  1. Mary and John McKenzie says:

    We have never seen such beautiful ghosts in our lives. We’d love to be haunted by them. Everyone looks very relaxed and full of life. Good you had such fun

    Lots of love to you all

    Mary/ Gran, John/ Grandad, and Rowan

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s