Spectacular pristine landscapes are the treasure of New Zealand. For such
a small country, the land-wild, unspoiled and incredibly diverse- plays in big.
Trip Through Arcadian Landscapes
On A Walk To The Beach
Unbroken views to the sea and Mt. Cook
in the clouds above forests of giant fern.
Iced-capped peaks over turbulent waters.
Plying the liquid turquoise.
Impenetrable virgin bush land.
Easy access to glaciers.
Pastoral and Bucolic
Another spectacular vista.
There ARE Cities.
Skytower in Auckland
Clean, and surprisingly multiracial due
to an influx of immigrants, this metropolis
is home to one third of New Zealand's
population of 4 million. Awesome views
of the city from Skytower, the tallest
structure in the Southern Hemisphere.
New Zealand's official capital as well as
one of art and culture. Nestled between the
harbor and the hills, it's only 2 km wide so
you can walk across town in 20 minutes.
What with the bitter Antarctic winds sweeping
through, the orientation onto the sea and the
the trolley up to Victorian neighborhoods,
Wellington felt like a strange hybrid of
San Francisco and Chicago.
Leaving Wellington via ferry boat to brave
what is reputedly one of the most treacherous
stretches of open water in the world (!).
The ferries keep on running between the
north and south islands until the waves
crest 6 meters. That's almost 20 feet!
Wahine Disaster 1968
Safely In Harbor
The ferry got us to the port in Picton with
a lot of tossing and turning but no mishap.
South Island's Main Burg
Settled by the Brits, it has a distinctly English air.
The old stone Neo-Gothic architecture brought to
mind Harry Potter and "punting" on the Avon River,
which wends through a magnificent 75 acre botanical
garden at the heart of the city, is just sooo British.
In The City
That's where you find the cultural color
that breaks the spellbinding and breathtaking
overwhelm of New Zealand's natural charms.
A Tea Break
Some radical drinking going on.
Or A Double Shot At Zippy's
Kiwis like their java! Very
strong and in large quantities.
Sample some Cuban grown.
Big Coffee with Big Cake
The food in New Zealand distinguishes
itself by being fresh, eclectic and very large.
Some oddities: burgers sport pickled beets
and fried egg, chutney is a common condiment
and Kiwis don't refrigerate their eggs.
The Ubiquitous Pie
Excellent and organic.
Kiwis Like Their Beer
And Their Rugby
All Blacks is the NZ team.
They have the Maori advantage.
This guy is performing "haka", a
Maori war dance, before the game.
Though the Maori, like most colonized indigenous peoples,
have struggled with marginalization, their cultural heritage is
highly visible and is increasingly being acknowledged and
honored in Kiwi public life. Which is as it should be.
Maori Man with Tattooed Face
and Greenstone Earring
This was a painting in the Christchurch Art Museum.
Spirits Faces in Stone
Evidence of Hippies ~ A Cobb Archway
Party Pills? What?
New Zealand's attempt to offer young people
an herbal alternative to the illegal stuff. Herbal
LSD, Ecstasy, Speed, etc. You name it, there's an
analog. Intrigued, I asked what's in it and misheard
the answer: PCP? Wow, these Kiwis ARE progressive.
BZP, actually. It's a derivative of the pepper plant.
Goodbye New Zealand
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