• Day13

    Wellington and an old friend

    October 24, 2019 in New Zealand ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

    After a leisurely breakfast we drove just twenty minutes to Rotorua airport ensuring the the rental car was full with petrol when we dropped it off (we know from past experience what these companies can be like). A bit of hassle ensued at the airport for we knew in advance that the weight of our luggage was going to exceed the normal limit so had paid extra to cover this. The check in staff were a bit confused by this but after a bit of to-ing and fro-ing eventually all was well and we set off on the seventy minute flight down to Wellington.
    The taxi ride into the city showed what a lovely city it is. It is quite hilly with properties up in the hills looking down on the city and over the bay. We checked into our hotel which was very central and very comfortable and after taking some advice from the hotel staff as to the best thing to do for a half day in the city we set off. We walked along the front and took the famous Wellington cable car, which was really a funicular railway, to a point above the city. Had a bite to eat at the top and then meandered down the slope through the botanical gardens which were lovely and then on past the Parliament building and to the waterfront. This area clearly has been redeveloped and transformed in recent years for there are now numerous bars and restaurants all looking out over the bay. Next stop was the National Museum of New Zealand, Te Papa, which is opposite our hotel and worth a visit. It is one of those places that if you had the time you could spend all day there. There were a variety of exhibits tracing the history and wildlife of the country together with some modern art which we enjoyed.
    In the evening I’d arranged to meet with Nick Hallett and his partner Jaala. Nick and I had worked together for Dawson’s in Croydon many moons ago and Nick emigrated over here about six years ago and loves it here. We had a very good evening hearing more about life in NZ.
    Up early this morning, Saturday, to take the Interislander ferry through the Cook Strait over to Picton in the South Island for the next leg of our journey. I am writing this on the ferry and Leicester are winning 8-0 - happy days!
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