Ferry from Picton to Wellington

Trip Start Oct 16, 2007
Trip End May 09, 2008

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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

The ferry ride from Picton to Wellington was pretty scenic as we travelled through the Marlborough Sounds.  The only unsightly parts of Marlborough were the islands that were bald from logging with many dirt logging roads etched into them.  Since we caught the early ferry, we got to see the sunrise from the ferry which was very special.  3 hours later, we reached Wellington. 

The first thing we checked out in Wellington was the Te Papa museum, one of the few things open at 9am.  This museum was pretty amazing and had everything relating to NZ, and it was free!  The "Awesome Forces" section of the museum contained info on the geology of NZ.  They had info on which animal and plant species were introduced to NZ at different time periods.  There were also many areas featuring the Maori history and culture, including a section on the Waitangi treaty signed between the Maori and the British in 1840.   The treaty was originally written in 2 languages... but the crazy thing was that the content of the treaty was really different in each version.  Apparently there was some translation problem at the time the treaty was created, and it still causes some grief to this day.  Shari found one section on the comparisons between NZ, Hawaii, and other Polynesian Islands interesting.   They also had some word comparisons between the languages.  'Wahine" (woman) is the same between Maori and Hawaiian.  'Tane' (man) is similar to 'Kane' in Hawaiian.  The museum also had a cool garden, which was quite extensive and featured various types of terrain found in NZ, including forests, caves, and an area with huge boulders illustrating the different types of rocks found in NZ. 

We came out of the museum blown away, literally!   The winds were really strong and it started to rain a little.  We just had some lunch, walked around a bit and did some book shopping.   We were hoping to buy a guidebook for the Dominican Republic and Ecuador (our next major, and final stops on our trip) but they were $55 each!   So we decided to hold off on our book buying till we hit Auckland, and hoped to hit a second hand bookstore there.  We drove north-bound till we got tired and stayed at a holiday park in a really small town, Bulls.
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