New Zealand South Island
20.11.2008 - 25.11.2008 20 °C
We don't want to sound like whinging Pomms or anything but the excitement of camping is wearing thin on the soggy South Island. It has been raining continuously for the last four days. I have never seen it rain so hard for so long!
Our first couple of days on the South Island were brilliant. Our first stop was the Marlborough wine region where we did a full day of wine tasting with a small fun group. The Sauvignon Blancs went down very well indeed.
It was a warm and sunny day and in the evening we found the only restaurant in town where we had a great fish meal and still had room for desert.
After Marlborough we drove up to Nelson, this is when it started to rain In Nelson we walked to a point which is the exact center of New Zealand which is very conveniently located at the very top of a hill which has a great view over the town. A playing field at the bottom is also where the first game of rugby was played in New Zealand.
From here we moved on to Abel Tasman National Park (so did the rain!). We took a water taxi around the coastline and hiked for four hours back to camp. We got absolutely drenched but still enjoyed the views of mountains, sandy bays and waterfalls.
The next day was a monster ten hour drive down to the Franz Joseph Glacier. On the way we stopped at Buller Gorge to cross the longest swing bridge in NZ at 110 meters long. The river below was raging with all the recent rainfall and I didn't think that Vicki would want to cross the bridge, so I was very suprised when she suggested the flying fox return!
The rest of the drive was quite a challenge as the rain was comming down so hard and many of the roads were flooded, and there were even some land slides that bloked some roads. But the upside is that due to the heavy rain there were plenty of waterfalls to see.
We are currently in Franz Joseph but are unable to visit the glacier because it is closed due to the bad weather. We are keeping our fingers crossed that the weather is better tomorrow and we'll be happy campers again