Trip Start Aug 24, 2008
Trip End Jul 07, 2009

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Flag of New Zealand  , South Island,
Monday, May 25, 2009

We picked up our car after breakfast. It's an automatic, so David had a little practice driving it. He soon got the idea, and the roads here are far less busy than at home, so we set off for the Banks Peninsula.We took a bit of a gamble heading to the sea, because it was very likely to rain. We drove down to Sumner Beach, which was full of crazy dogs running about, which reminded me of Ruddles. We went to see Cave Rock, a big rock in the middle of the beach with a cave under it that the sea flows through. We went through it and climbed over it, looking at the pretty view of the beach. Next we headed to the Summit Road, a scenic drive over the hills of the peninsula. At first the scenery was gorgeous - green hills, sheep, glittering blue sea, and David said it reminded him of Wales. Then we ascended into the mist. We could see nothing but white so we gave up and went back to the coastal road. David did enjoy driving the winding roads though.

We stopped in Lyttleton for lunch, which we made ourselves, and then we drove to Akaroa, which took us past cliffs, more sheep, 2 lakes, and a cheese factory (where we stopped off and tasted the cheese). The clouds stayed on the tops of the hills so by the time we reached Akaroa it was raining. We checked into a lovely cosy hostel that felt like a home. We had battered mussels and beer battered chips from the fish and chip shop for dinner. They were the best chips we have ever tasted.

It was very misty when we woke up, but we went to ask about dolphin watching cruises anyway, just in case. They said to come back later so we drove through the hills to Le Bons Bay, a lovely sandy beach surrounded by cliffs. It was very green, the sun was shining and the sky was blue, so we were hopeful for our dolphin trip. We chased birds on the beach, saw eagles munching on dead animals, admired the pretty lakes, and then returned to Akaroa, where it was raining. Our dolphin trip was cancelled so we left for Oamaru, 4hours drive away.
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