Summary of the last fortnight


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Went sailing on Lake Taupo (but no breeze at all!), visited the CRATERS OF THE MOON! - a highly thermal area near Taupo- boiling steam, bubbling mud, pink and green earth. Huka Prawn- the most hilarious fun you can have with 15cm Malaysian Prawns, Huka falls, watching bungy jumpers fall over rivers and come up drenched, the nicest Top 10 park yet (I will go on a jumping pillow!)    


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Smelt the sulpher smelling air, went to the Rotorua musuem (which could be mistaken for the Woolacombe Bay hotel!) saw the iconic bowl players on the green, saw bubbling mud pools everywhere.


Beautiful city on the East coast, streets lined with Palm trees. wished we could have stayed longer.


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Art Deco city of the World- nearly every building has art deco esque designs, there is even an art deco weekend coming up where cinemas show 1920 films, have balls and drive around in old cars. There is "Bertie" the Art deco man who walks around Napier in full kit (unfortunately we only heard this and didn't see him). Road out to Hastings was lined with beaches on one side and winerys on the other.


Lovely scenery driving from Napier to Wellington, mountains flanking the road, Upper Hutt road was interesting. Cor blimey it's windy here in Wellington! Only had a brief wander around Wellington as we arrived late and left early. Saw huge amounts of public art all over the city, men chainsawing concrete in parks to create more sculptures. Apparently there is a life size cave troll and winged Nazgul hanging over a building somewhere. But no pizza shops! Want to visit the impressive museum and watch Lord Of The Rings again! (There is a cinema here that will always show it) Haven't seen any of the film sets yet either- there are a few around Wellington including Rivendell. We went across the Cooks Strait on the ferry in the morning, beautiful views across to Wellington the "Garden City".


The entry point to the South Island. Went through the Marlbrough sounds which were stuning, all huge mountains, turquiose sea and sandy white beaches. Drove up the Queen Charlotte Drive (the car only just managed this feat!) which gave spectacular views over the sea and sounds.


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A very nice little city, on the seafront. Is home to the "One ring" which I couldn't find....grrr. Swam in the Tasman sea off the coast of Nelson, found a gorgeous beach called Cable Bay, had takeaways! Bought a new camera- both of ours are now dead! Went for a long 2 day walk around the Nelson National Park, stayed in a backcountry hut. (got blisters....and lost my sunglasses!) Met up with Zoe.

Abel Tasman National Park:

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Andy should be writing a more detailed account of this, but for the moment, Zoe, Andy and myself kayaked for 3 days in the beautiful National Park- all sandy beaches, tiny coves, seals, warm water, compost toilets, blue penguins, sacadas (bloody noisy and very ugly beetles) wood pigeons, impossibly tight kayak skirts, massive amounts of kayaks on otherwie empty beaches, water taxis making waves, 4 year old children making us laugh, pumping water, nappy rash and boil in the bag food.