Saturday, 14 February 2015

New Zealand – Timaru to Dunedin

Before Mick & I headed on our way, Lou and I went for a short walk through the Timaru Scenic Reserve.  It is a lovely, peaceful place to walk.  I was delighted to spy a little fantail.

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Once we returned, there was the obligatory photo of Lou and I together.  We did actually remember.  Then it was time to say our farewells and head south.  Hopefully, it will be our turn to play hosts next time.

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Once on the road we called into the little town of Waimate.  It was a surprise to see a main street with lots of heritage buildings.  The church was a feature.  There are lots of beautiful timber churches in NZ with decorative, free standing bell towers.  Quite different to what we see at home. 

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Waimate is called “Wallaby Country”, as there is a wildlife park and a small free roaming population.  We actually saw one dead on the side of the road when out with Lou and Tony, so Mick had to take a photo as proof.  No, I won’t share it here.

Next stop down the road was Oamaru.  The town was also somewhat of a surprise.  There was a pretty harbour.

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The surprise was the rest of the  buildings.  Lots of very substantial stone civic buildings, but there was a historic side street of shops.

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Also, huge big Victorian warehousing, mostly empty.  All built out of limestone known as Oamaru Stone.

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We had been told that we MUST visit Steam Punk HQ.  This is a relatively new addition to the Oamaru landscape, using a stunning big old building.

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Yep, that is a steam punk steam train coming out of the ground.

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There is no fine, delicate clockwork creations here.  Everything is on a big scale, as befits the setting.

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There is even a steam punk festival held here annually.

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The highlight for me was the Infinity Portal.

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Once you enter the portal you are greeted by this.  The colours change all the time and the view goes on for ever.  In reality, you are in a three metre square room, but every surface is mirrored.  The illusion is amazing and takes a little time to adjust to. Very impressive.

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Once outside again we hit the road and kept on our way south, enjoying glimpses of the coastline as we travelled along.

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Our destination for the day was Dunedin, the largest city in the south.  Once we booked into our accommodation it was time to explore. 

The rather impressive Anglican cathedral.

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There was quite a bit of interesting street art.

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The most famous building is the Railway Station.  We were unable to go in as there were two wedding receptions taking place.  Not a bad setting.

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Another church, this time the Otaga First Church.

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We were able to go inside and the interior was as lovely as the outside.

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The very centre of the city is known as “The Octagon”, for obvious reasons once you see a city map.  It houses a large collection of restaurants and bars, so this is where we ended up, soaking up the sun with a cool drink.  Rather pleasant.  We ate at an Irish pub. I don’t intend showing every meal we ate, but this was impressive……Antipasto for one…..just as well we didn’t get it for two.

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Which was followed by Braised Hare.  We’ve never seen hare on a menu before, so we had to try it.  Yes, it was very good.  We have seen it again since, so it is obviously something that isn’t too unusual over here.  Just as well we hadn’t tried it before, or Joey our cat would have missed out on it for cat food.

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Finally, the view as we wandered back to the motel with full bellies.  By the way, this was well after 9pm.

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Another very enjoyable day, and as you can see, the weather was playing for us too.


Rachaeldaisy said...

Wow! Now I really want to go to NZ!! It all looks amazing! That Steam Punk museum would have been such a great experience, and all the churches and cathedrals look beautiful. It's great to see you're having such a great trip!

Lyn said...

It is interesting seeing our city through someone else's eyes..things we pass all the time and take for granted..the wall art has popped up over the last year and there are some great examples around town..your photos are just lovely..and it is wonderful to enjoy twilight at this time of the glad you had a lovely time..

Jenny said...

Looks like you are having a great time. Love the photos

loulee said...

It was great to spend time with you guys again.
Glad you enjoyed the Steampunk HQ!
Enjoy the rest of your tour.