A visit at the capital and diversified landscapes
Dear Family members and friends, we wish you had a lovely Christmas time. We hoped you had reflective and restful Holidays with your family. For us this Christmas was different to the one we used to have, far away from our family and relatives. During Christmas Eve we went out for Dinner at a Thai restaurant, it was nice but definitely different than our usual Christmas Eve.
For us nothing has changed so far, we still continue to travel around this country to see the sights. From Picton we took the ferry to Wellington, the trip was comfortable, the sea was luckily smooth. In Picton we had to return our rent car back and we picked a new one in Wellington. This time we had more luck, we get a brand new car with all electronic gimmicks.
We like the main capital of New Zealand, Wellington is rich in variety, has an artistically touch and offers quite a lot. We could only stay here for two nights and walked around the city. We went to the botanical garden, visited the Te Papa museum and had some great Asian food. For my own part I also went to the cinema to watch the Star Wars movie and the highlight was a visit at the Weta Cave Workshop. Mery was not interested in both of these stuff, so she went walking through the city. From the botanical garden you have a great outlook at the city, it was a nice sunny day when we went there. The Te Papa museum is a museum about New Zealand, the exhibition is about the geography, history, Flora and Fauna, and of course about the native culture of this country. It´s definitely worth to visit the Te Papa, but plan your tour with plenty of time because it´s quite huge. For me the highlight was to see the Weta Cave Workshop. This company exists already for more than 20 years and they are specialist in model making for the film industry. They create costumes, special vehicles, decorations, miniature models, special effects, etc. They became famous for the contract to make the costumes, weapons, decorations, etc. for the movies The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. But they also made models for the movies like the new Mad Max, Chappie, King Kong, etc. Those of you who love fantasy and science fiction movies should visit this place and join a tour. You can see original costumes, decorations, weapons, etc. of some different movies, it´s a chance to see behind the curtain of the film industry.
From Wellington we drove to Wanganui and stayed there for only one night. The next day we drove along the Wanganui River as far as it was possible, the landscape is like painted, very beautiful to see. Our destination on that day was the town Taupo. This place is very idyllic, a nice little town which is at the lake Taupo and surrounded by beautiful mountains. We stayed here for three nights until the first Christmas day. From here we made day trips to Rotorua and Wai O Tapu and the surrounding of Taupo. Rotorua is one of the places of the natives, the Maoris. Here you can visit some traditional villages, see their cultures and dancing performances. In Wai O Tapu we saw the hot colourful geothermal volcanic fountains. This place reminded me of the Yellowstone national park, it´s pretty similar.
From Taupo we drove further north, but later more about this part of our journey.