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Ciaran and Ruth's Worldwide Adventures

South Island

NEW ZEALAND | Thursday, 9 August 2007 | Views [430]

New Zealand is comprised of two main islands, understandably named the North Island and the South Island. Separated by the Cook Straits on the surface and the Pacific / Australian plate intersection at a deeper level, the two islands actually have less in common than you'd expect. Or so we're told. So, to investigate, we took the Interislander Ferry (see photo) for 3 hours between Wellington on the south of the North Island and Picton on the north of the South Island - if you follow. We then drove for a couple of hours along the Queen Charlotte Driveway - a windy potholed road which nonetheless provides the most incredible views of the South Island's stunning landscape - made famous in the Lord of the Rings. Eventually, after the dark winter night crept up on us in the middle of nowhere, we found our place of rest for the evening, a cottage built on a pond in rural New Zealand. We took a drive to the local village, Mapua, where we had a genuine Kiwi dinner in the Village Inn - their pub / restaurant / creche / tourist information etc.

The area we're staying in, Tasman, is named after Abel Tasman, the Dutch explorer who first stumbled across these rocks in the South Pacific in the seventeenth century and decided to name them Niew Zeeland after some region or another in his native Holland. A large national park up the road is also named in his honour, so we'll probably have a bit of a look at that tomorrow.

Tags: planes trains & automobiles


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