Place 58 – Day 2: Kaikoura – Whale Watching, Hot Tub & Family Games Night!

We woke up a bit later, at 08:30, and got showered. We had very nice showers here again, which was a win!

Lisa went to the bakery to get some breakfast. This was an assortment of pastries.

From this point, we walked down to the whale watching building. Next to this, there was a black stony beach and a wonderful view of the mountains. We then went inside for our briefing.

After the briefing, we went into a bus to take us to the bay where the boat was.

We were then on the boat for 2.5 hours! We saw a lot of Albatross, including the biggest one in the world, the wandering Albatross. As well as this, we got to see the mountains from the sea, which were stunning.

There were many other birds that we saw, too. We stopped moving a few times so the crew could track the whales’ sonar, which we were unlucky with the first few times.

After a while, they finally heard the sonar of a whale and we raced to where it should be and, sure enough, it was right there, just chilling on the top of the water. We were then told that it was about to dive back down and we got some great photos and videos!

We then made our way back to land and got on the bus back to the whale watching building.

From here, Kim went off with Lisa and the kids to get food whilst Curtis and Gareth went to get the campervan looked at as there were some warning lights appearing.

Kim, the kids and Lisa were unable to find any food and met Curtis and Gareth at the garage before going to Subway for lunch.

After lunch, we went back to the garage and found out that the campervan was all good so didn’t have to worry about that at all. We then went to the shop to get dinner supplies.

We got back to the campsite and fancied a dip in the hottub, so we did that for a couple of hours, though it was incredibly hot!

We got out and had a shower and then it was time for dinner.

We had a BBQ for dinner, though it was too cold to sit outside so we went inside and had a lovely meal!

After this, we went to the onsite games room and all had an amazing time playing the games there. There was table tennis, fußball, pool & air hockey. We were here for ages and then had to head to bed at 22:00!

Tomorrow is another driving day but not too long, which is a positive.

This time last year!

Poroporoaki!

– Mr & Mrs Hale

Advertisements

Place 57 – Day 1: Franz Josef – Kiwi Bird & Hot Pools

We left at 10:00 and drove towards the Franz Josef glaciers.

We wanted to get to the glaciers today, so we made our way towards them!

For breakfast, we had bacon and sausage rolls and a coffee. There were sheep across the river too!

We stopped to get some fuel and then saw the awesome vintage store across the way which used to be commercial stables.

We went across a lot of cool bridges and saw some great scenery!

We arrived in Franz Josef and got to the caravan park. We got to the correct plot, parked up and explored!

We found a wildlife park which had Kiwi Birds in them, so we had to go in. We saw the kiwi which was much bigger than we thought! No photos were taken as it was forbidden. Whilst we were in there, a man farted on Kim’s feet whilst crouched, which was hilarious!

We walked around the rest, seeing information about glaciers and also Tuatara which are pre-dinosaur animals.

We left here and went to the hot pools. These were man made pools which were meant to mimic a hot spring, similar to the Blue Lagoon in Rejkjavik.

We couldn’t take photos here either, but we all had fun chilling in all the different pools.

We left here and went for a beer at the pub on our campsite before making dinner.

For dinner, Kim managed to make hunters chicken in our tiny kitchen in the campervan. It was absolutely divine!

We then sat and had a few drinks whilst chatting together.

Tomorrow we will see some glaciers up close and then have another long drive!

This Time Last Year!

Place 56 – Day 1: Murchison – Ferry Crossing & Finally Camping!

We woke up very early at 04:30 and got ready to leave.

We got showered and packed up before jumping in the campervan.

We drove from Palmerston North to Wellington to catch the ferry to Picton on the south island.

The ferry was a 4 hour journey but we used the time wisely to have some breakfast. Kim got a breakfast panini and Curtis had the big kiwi breakfast.

We chilled on the ferry and then headed from the ferry to a town called Murchison. This is an old town where a lot of the shops are still old and sell old items!

We got a campsite where the owner was very lovely and helpful. It was just us at the site when we arrived and there were bikes we could use too!

We went with Gareth to the town on the bikes which was cold but really fun. We looked into the windows of the (closed) shops and then went to the tiny supermarket for supplies. We cycled back to the campervan and were quite tired from that point!

im and Lisa made spaghetti bolognese for dinner and we all sat outside and ate with incredible views.

We made our way back to the campervan and got ready for bed.

We chilled out just chatting and then headed to bed to get rested!

This time last year!

Poroporoaki!

– Mr & Mrs Hale

Place 55 – Day 1: Palmerston North – The Start, Mountains & Snow!

We woke up at 07:30 and Kim had to go to work for an hour.

Once Kim was done with work, she got home and got ready for the rest of the day.

Curtis’ family were meeting us at our place. Once they arrived, we chucked our bags in the taxi and then got ourselves into the taxi and drove to near the airport to pickup a campervan!

After having to wait for over an hour, we finally got our campervan. We were given a quick tour and provided information then we were off! Gareth drove all day, which was very kind of him.

We got onto the motorway and headed towards Taupo for our first stop.

We had to stop a little earlier then planned as we needed to get some food.

We stopped in a small town called Cambridge. We just stopped at a BP garage and got some food. We had sandwiches and pies as well as a drink and some coffee!

After being well fuelled up, we drove on to Taupo.

Once we got to Taupo, we went straight to Huka Falls. These are some beautiful waterfalls.

Once we left here, we made our way towards our final destination of the day, Palmerston North.

This leg of the trip was absolutely beautiful! We had mountains, alpaca, sheep, cows and snow to look at!

Once we got into the mountains, the temperature dropped down to 0.5°C! Due to this, everyone in the back got under blankets to keep warm.

As it became dark, the sleet came and then so did the snow! Luckily, this ended fairly quickly, but we were still driving through the middle of no where in the mountains.

Kim took over driving for the last hour or so.

At 20:30 we arrived in Palmerston North after we’d been driving since about 12:00!

We planned to stay at a campervan site and make a spaghetti bolognese…which didn’t happen!

The website said it closed at 21:00 but we got there at 20:30 and it was closed! No one was answering the phone either so we had to figure out what to do.

We found a hotel/motel to stay in and went to their restaurant for a quick bit to eat before sleeping!

We have an early start tomorrow and a little bit more driving!

This time last year!

Poroporoaki!

– Mr & Mrs Hale

Place 49 – Day 250: Auckland – Chicken Feast & Planning

Curtis’ Day;

Curtis had to get a lot done today as it was his last day for 1.5 weeks!

Curtis worked hard all morning and was surprised when it was already 12:00!

Curtis was so hungry, so he went out to buy some food. On the way, he saw Josh so he stopped and had a quick chat.

Soon after, Curtis got to the place he bought lunch from. Curtis ordered a chicken burger and chips which was quite tasty (though there was cucumber in the burger which is odd) though it took 25 minutes to make for some reason, and they weren’t busy, either!

Curtis at that whilst he did some work that he needed to get sorted.

Curtis had all cases re-assigned to other people by about 16:00 and left the office at 16:30. He walked down to the apartments to see his family again, but this time the weather was much nicer!

Curtis chatted with them about their day as they went to a volcano island!

Both of us;

Kim left work late and then had to Uber down to the apartments but she got to us eventually and we went out for dinner!

We walked to the viaduct and went to a place that Lisa found called ‘Dr Rudis’. This was a bar/brewery/restaurant.

We arrived and there wasnt really anywhere for us to sit to start with, but we found a spot eventually.

The music was a bit loud but the food on the menu sounded good.

We got a chicken sharing platter and two pizzas, as well as beer.

Chicken_Platter_Dr_RudisThe Excellent Chicken Platter

We are all of our food and then made our way back to the apartment.

On the way, we got another great view of the sky tower!

Sky_Tower_2_Auckland

We got back to the apartment and had some planning to do! We’re off on a fun trip for the next week, which you’ll hear more about tomorrow. Its exciting and should be a lot of fun and an adventure.

We left the apartment, walked to the car and walked home.

When we got home, we packed for our trip and then got some sleep! Kim actually has to work for an hour tomorrow morning before we leave.

This time last year!

Poroporoaki!

– Mr & Mrs Hale

Place 49 – Day 249: Auckland – Family Meetup

Curtis’ Day;

Curtis’ day was pretty busy throughout.

Nothing very interesting happened today for Curtis. He got fuel at lunchtime but the day ended so fast for anything to happen!

At 16:30, Curtis got changed and left work, walking down to the apartment that his family are staying in at about 17:00.

Curtis chilled out with them and chatted about our future plans as well as our travel experiences.

Both of us;

Kim arrived at the apartment at about 17:50 and then we went out for dinner.

We didn’t know what we wanted but we walked around to find something for a while before deciding on a Japanese place. The food wasn’t bad but they did forget some of our meals and brought out incorrect meals so it didn’t go entirely well!

We left here and walked back to the apartment, said our goodbyes and walked back to Curtis’ work, got the car and drove home.

Skytower_Auckland_LowShot
Got this great photo on the way back to the car!

We got back and had a chat with Nicola about our last couple of days and then tried to warm up as our room was freezing!

Kim tried on her clothes again that she had brought over from the UK and she was loving it.

This time last year!

Poroporoaki!

– Mr & Mrs Hale

Place 49 – Day 248: Auckland – Family!

Curtis’ Day;

Curtis had plans to go to two clients this morning, so he did just that.

Curtis had a few things to do before heading out and just before leaving a large influx of emails came in.

Curtis left and popped to the ice hockey shop to see of they could repair his hockey skates, but there was nothing they could do, which was unfortunate!

Curtis left after a quick visit to the shop and went to the first client. Not too much was needed here, but it was good for Curtis to touch base and check all was good. He then left and went to the other client which was a 30 minute drive.

Curtis spent about an hour on site and helped a couple of people and then got back to the office and had lunch. During lunch, Curtis looked online to see what the damage would be for a new pair of skates!

Luckily, someone that coaches Curtis’ team had a spare pair of used, high-end skates which were his size! Curtis organised to meet him in the evening to try them on to ensure they fit.

Curtis left work a bit early to contend with the traffic due to a major accident. Curtis got home around the time he normally would after leaving an hour early!

Both of us;

Kim got home and we had some dinner. We had leftover sausage and mash, which was delicious.

Kim then went for dessert with Tabitha at the chocolate cafe.

Chocolate_Cafe_Takapuna

Kim met with Tabitha as Tabitha is going away for a few weeks and she is sad to not see her for a bit.

Once Kim got back, we went to the ice rink in Avondale to test out the skates. The seemed to fit perfectly and Curtis was even able to test them on the ice briefly!

We left there and headed for the airport.

We got a couple of drinks from the supermarket and then waited at the airport for Curtis’ family to arrive!

We surprised them at the airport and drove Max & Evie (Curtis’ siblings) to the airport whilst Lisa & Gareth took the free bus.

We met them back at the hotel and helped them with their bags and had a quick chat before leaving them to sleep and driving home ourselves.

It will be so fun to spend time with them and then we are both of from Friday, too for some fun activities!

This time last year!

Poroporoaki!

– Mr & Mrs Hale