New Zealand— a whirlwind tour

Anne here, dashing in with a very quick blog — I'm at my third conference in four weeks, and have revised a book in between, so I'm time poor and brain-dizzy.  Magnolia

The middle of those conferences was in New Zealand (as any of you who read my Hobbiton post would realize) so today I'm going to give you a quick glimpse of some New Zealand places I visited.( Click on the photos for a larger view)  

Rhodies

It was early spring, and I'd only ever visited NZ in the summer, so I kept stopping to take photos of the flowersI kept spotting in people's gardens.

The RWNZ conference was in Rotorua, a site of bubbling hot mud and gushing geysers. The first hint that you're getting close is the smell of sulphur in the air,  like rotten egg gas. (All through the conference I kept thinking of a boy called Lynton Hastings, who I went to school with, and who was notorious for concocting bad smells in science class.) So that's what Rotorua smells like. (Below is the view from my hotel.)


RotoruaView

But you pretty soon get used to the smell. The thing that kept astounding me was the way that you would see steam coming out of the earth, in the middle of a park, or a paddock — usually with a small fence around it. It was a sobering reminder of how thin the earth's crust is in places.

 

Steam&MudWhen I was twelve my family visited Rotorua and I've never forgotten how the Maori people used the hot springs and mud for all kinds of ways, from cooking to healing to washing. I didn't visit the Maori village this time, but I certainly watched my faire share of bubbling mud pools.

Boiling mud, plop-plop-plopping away. MudPool

When I left Rotorua, I drove south to Lake Taupo, just for lunch — I only had a short time in New Zealand. Wow, what a gorgeous place — the lake was like glass, and behind it the snow-capped mountains rose. That's it, below. 

After that I drove back north, to the town near Hobbiton where I stayed the night.

Taupo1After Hobbiton, I drove out along the Coromandel Peninsular, and wow what a narrow winding road it was. A little bit scary too. I'm a confident driver generally, but not only was this very windy and narrow, the road bordered a considerable drop to rocks and water below and there was not much edge, and very few barriers — I few sticks with reflectors on it.  Not my idea of safety.

In places the edge of the road had washed right away, and those gaping spots were edged with bright orange witches hats and a bit of tape. On the inside lane of the road, there was evidence of big mudslides and a couple of rockslides.  Coromandel5

But for me the most dangerous part of the drive was the continually gorgeous views that each sharp corner revealed. There were very few places to stop and admire the view, and it took will power (and terror) to keep my eyes wholly on the road. I was simply swamped by beauty.

I drove until it started to get dark and then started looking for a place to stay. I drove up a few dead-end roads just to catch the views and at the end of one of them came to a house that advertised itself as a "motel style B&B." I asked could I have a look at a room, and as it was lovely and the price was good, I stayed my last night in NZ there. This was the view from my room. Not bad, eh?

WyunaBayCoromandelPenSo that's it, a quick glimpse of a small part of New Zealand. It's a truly stunningly beautiful country — I once spent three months travelling around there (as a student) and every part of it is lovely. 

 Have you ever visited New Zealand? What's the most beautiful place you've ever been to? If you could take a holiday anywhere in the world (all expenses paid) where would you go?

130 thoughts on “New Zealand— a whirlwind tour”

  1. I’ve seen many lovely places over the years, but your drive up the peninsular reminded me of a road trip I took many, many years ago. I was living in LA at the time and we took a trip up the Coast highway to northern Calif. It was a bit scary (not as scary as yours), but so beautiful.
    So many places I would still love to see. Always regretted not making it to the British Isles when I was living in Europe and I have always wanted to see New England in the Fall. The latter I could probably afford, but my aching bones wouldn’t cooperate.
    Thank you for the lovely tour and pictures. They are beautiful.

    Reply
  2. I’ve seen many lovely places over the years, but your drive up the peninsular reminded me of a road trip I took many, many years ago. I was living in LA at the time and we took a trip up the Coast highway to northern Calif. It was a bit scary (not as scary as yours), but so beautiful.
    So many places I would still love to see. Always regretted not making it to the British Isles when I was living in Europe and I have always wanted to see New England in the Fall. The latter I could probably afford, but my aching bones wouldn’t cooperate.
    Thank you for the lovely tour and pictures. They are beautiful.

    Reply
  3. I’ve seen many lovely places over the years, but your drive up the peninsular reminded me of a road trip I took many, many years ago. I was living in LA at the time and we took a trip up the Coast highway to northern Calif. It was a bit scary (not as scary as yours), but so beautiful.
    So many places I would still love to see. Always regretted not making it to the British Isles when I was living in Europe and I have always wanted to see New England in the Fall. The latter I could probably afford, but my aching bones wouldn’t cooperate.
    Thank you for the lovely tour and pictures. They are beautiful.

    Reply
  4. I’ve seen many lovely places over the years, but your drive up the peninsular reminded me of a road trip I took many, many years ago. I was living in LA at the time and we took a trip up the Coast highway to northern Calif. It was a bit scary (not as scary as yours), but so beautiful.
    So many places I would still love to see. Always regretted not making it to the British Isles when I was living in Europe and I have always wanted to see New England in the Fall. The latter I could probably afford, but my aching bones wouldn’t cooperate.
    Thank you for the lovely tour and pictures. They are beautiful.

    Reply
  5. I’ve seen many lovely places over the years, but your drive up the peninsular reminded me of a road trip I took many, many years ago. I was living in LA at the time and we took a trip up the Coast highway to northern Calif. It was a bit scary (not as scary as yours), but so beautiful.
    So many places I would still love to see. Always regretted not making it to the British Isles when I was living in Europe and I have always wanted to see New England in the Fall. The latter I could probably afford, but my aching bones wouldn’t cooperate.
    Thank you for the lovely tour and pictures. They are beautiful.

    Reply
  6. I am New Zealander who left at age three, visited periodically until age ten, and then didn’t return for forty years. My American husband and I visited several years ago when our daughter was doing a study abroad in Dunedin during her junior year of college. Since I don’t drive and my husband was not comfortable driving on the left, we toured by bus. We started out in Auckland so that I could revisit what little I remembered from my childhood and then headed south. We’d go a distance and then stop for a couple of nights in various locales. We visited Rotorua (which I did recall) as well as Wellington. We took the ferry to the South Island and continued on with periodic stops. It was really a wonderful way for both of us to enjoy those tremendous views and to visit several parts of the country. We spent several days in Dunedin with our daughter before heading back to Auckland and then the US. We spent about three weeks in all. I’d happily visit again. I’ll admit it’s odd to be a New Zealander who has hardly ever been in country and who has no family there either. Have you head the term third culture individual? That’s me.

    Reply
  7. I am New Zealander who left at age three, visited periodically until age ten, and then didn’t return for forty years. My American husband and I visited several years ago when our daughter was doing a study abroad in Dunedin during her junior year of college. Since I don’t drive and my husband was not comfortable driving on the left, we toured by bus. We started out in Auckland so that I could revisit what little I remembered from my childhood and then headed south. We’d go a distance and then stop for a couple of nights in various locales. We visited Rotorua (which I did recall) as well as Wellington. We took the ferry to the South Island and continued on with periodic stops. It was really a wonderful way for both of us to enjoy those tremendous views and to visit several parts of the country. We spent several days in Dunedin with our daughter before heading back to Auckland and then the US. We spent about three weeks in all. I’d happily visit again. I’ll admit it’s odd to be a New Zealander who has hardly ever been in country and who has no family there either. Have you head the term third culture individual? That’s me.

    Reply
  8. I am New Zealander who left at age three, visited periodically until age ten, and then didn’t return for forty years. My American husband and I visited several years ago when our daughter was doing a study abroad in Dunedin during her junior year of college. Since I don’t drive and my husband was not comfortable driving on the left, we toured by bus. We started out in Auckland so that I could revisit what little I remembered from my childhood and then headed south. We’d go a distance and then stop for a couple of nights in various locales. We visited Rotorua (which I did recall) as well as Wellington. We took the ferry to the South Island and continued on with periodic stops. It was really a wonderful way for both of us to enjoy those tremendous views and to visit several parts of the country. We spent several days in Dunedin with our daughter before heading back to Auckland and then the US. We spent about three weeks in all. I’d happily visit again. I’ll admit it’s odd to be a New Zealander who has hardly ever been in country and who has no family there either. Have you head the term third culture individual? That’s me.

    Reply
  9. I am New Zealander who left at age three, visited periodically until age ten, and then didn’t return for forty years. My American husband and I visited several years ago when our daughter was doing a study abroad in Dunedin during her junior year of college. Since I don’t drive and my husband was not comfortable driving on the left, we toured by bus. We started out in Auckland so that I could revisit what little I remembered from my childhood and then headed south. We’d go a distance and then stop for a couple of nights in various locales. We visited Rotorua (which I did recall) as well as Wellington. We took the ferry to the South Island and continued on with periodic stops. It was really a wonderful way for both of us to enjoy those tremendous views and to visit several parts of the country. We spent several days in Dunedin with our daughter before heading back to Auckland and then the US. We spent about three weeks in all. I’d happily visit again. I’ll admit it’s odd to be a New Zealander who has hardly ever been in country and who has no family there either. Have you head the term third culture individual? That’s me.

    Reply
  10. I am New Zealander who left at age three, visited periodically until age ten, and then didn’t return for forty years. My American husband and I visited several years ago when our daughter was doing a study abroad in Dunedin during her junior year of college. Since I don’t drive and my husband was not comfortable driving on the left, we toured by bus. We started out in Auckland so that I could revisit what little I remembered from my childhood and then headed south. We’d go a distance and then stop for a couple of nights in various locales. We visited Rotorua (which I did recall) as well as Wellington. We took the ferry to the South Island and continued on with periodic stops. It was really a wonderful way for both of us to enjoy those tremendous views and to visit several parts of the country. We spent several days in Dunedin with our daughter before heading back to Auckland and then the US. We spent about three weeks in all. I’d happily visit again. I’ll admit it’s odd to be a New Zealander who has hardly ever been in country and who has no family there either. Have you head the term third culture individual? That’s me.

    Reply
  11. Anne, thank you for a beautiful look at a part of the world I’ll probably never see in person as the flight’s way too long. I’m going to India next spring by way of week’s “layover” in England. That’s two 9-hour legs each way, about my max (and a mighty good excuse to go back to London one more time, lol). The world is smaller these days, but not small enough.
    Just wondering: The Aussies I’ve met are a notably lively breed. How about New Zealanders? I have an impression they’re close to the earth (the only one I’ve met was both, actually). Not that one can characterize a whole population that easily, but is there a NZ “feeling?”

    Reply
  12. Anne, thank you for a beautiful look at a part of the world I’ll probably never see in person as the flight’s way too long. I’m going to India next spring by way of week’s “layover” in England. That’s two 9-hour legs each way, about my max (and a mighty good excuse to go back to London one more time, lol). The world is smaller these days, but not small enough.
    Just wondering: The Aussies I’ve met are a notably lively breed. How about New Zealanders? I have an impression they’re close to the earth (the only one I’ve met was both, actually). Not that one can characterize a whole population that easily, but is there a NZ “feeling?”

    Reply
  13. Anne, thank you for a beautiful look at a part of the world I’ll probably never see in person as the flight’s way too long. I’m going to India next spring by way of week’s “layover” in England. That’s two 9-hour legs each way, about my max (and a mighty good excuse to go back to London one more time, lol). The world is smaller these days, but not small enough.
    Just wondering: The Aussies I’ve met are a notably lively breed. How about New Zealanders? I have an impression they’re close to the earth (the only one I’ve met was both, actually). Not that one can characterize a whole population that easily, but is there a NZ “feeling?”

    Reply
  14. Anne, thank you for a beautiful look at a part of the world I’ll probably never see in person as the flight’s way too long. I’m going to India next spring by way of week’s “layover” in England. That’s two 9-hour legs each way, about my max (and a mighty good excuse to go back to London one more time, lol). The world is smaller these days, but not small enough.
    Just wondering: The Aussies I’ve met are a notably lively breed. How about New Zealanders? I have an impression they’re close to the earth (the only one I’ve met was both, actually). Not that one can characterize a whole population that easily, but is there a NZ “feeling?”

    Reply
  15. Anne, thank you for a beautiful look at a part of the world I’ll probably never see in person as the flight’s way too long. I’m going to India next spring by way of week’s “layover” in England. That’s two 9-hour legs each way, about my max (and a mighty good excuse to go back to London one more time, lol). The world is smaller these days, but not small enough.
    Just wondering: The Aussies I’ve met are a notably lively breed. How about New Zealanders? I have an impression they’re close to the earth (the only one I’ve met was both, actually). Not that one can characterize a whole population that easily, but is there a NZ “feeling?”

    Reply
  16. Kareni, I think it’s more common than we might think, this thing of people split between two countries. But how lovely that you were able to make the trip with your husband and daughter. Bus sounds like a wonderful way to travel.

    Reply
  17. Kareni, I think it’s more common than we might think, this thing of people split between two countries. But how lovely that you were able to make the trip with your husband and daughter. Bus sounds like a wonderful way to travel.

    Reply
  18. Kareni, I think it’s more common than we might think, this thing of people split between two countries. But how lovely that you were able to make the trip with your husband and daughter. Bus sounds like a wonderful way to travel.

    Reply
  19. Kareni, I think it’s more common than we might think, this thing of people split between two countries. But how lovely that you were able to make the trip with your husband and daughter. Bus sounds like a wonderful way to travel.

    Reply
  20. Kareni, I think it’s more common than we might think, this thing of people split between two countries. But how lovely that you were able to make the trip with your husband and daughter. Bus sounds like a wonderful way to travel.

    Reply
  21. Mary, IMO the best way for someone in the US to travel downunder is in legs — eg a stopover in Hawaii.
    I think Aussie and NZers are fairly similar in many ways, The two tend to be competitive with each other — a bit like siblings –but when a third person (or country) comes into the equation, we’re best mates.

    Reply
  22. Mary, IMO the best way for someone in the US to travel downunder is in legs — eg a stopover in Hawaii.
    I think Aussie and NZers are fairly similar in many ways, The two tend to be competitive with each other — a bit like siblings –but when a third person (or country) comes into the equation, we’re best mates.

    Reply
  23. Mary, IMO the best way for someone in the US to travel downunder is in legs — eg a stopover in Hawaii.
    I think Aussie and NZers are fairly similar in many ways, The two tend to be competitive with each other — a bit like siblings –but when a third person (or country) comes into the equation, we’re best mates.

    Reply
  24. Mary, IMO the best way for someone in the US to travel downunder is in legs — eg a stopover in Hawaii.
    I think Aussie and NZers are fairly similar in many ways, The two tend to be competitive with each other — a bit like siblings –but when a third person (or country) comes into the equation, we’re best mates.

    Reply
  25. Mary, IMO the best way for someone in the US to travel downunder is in legs — eg a stopover in Hawaii.
    I think Aussie and NZers are fairly similar in many ways, The two tend to be competitive with each other — a bit like siblings –but when a third person (or country) comes into the equation, we’re best mates.

    Reply
  26. I would love to go to New Zealand AND Australia. But I’m afraid I won’t make it.
    I will need to be contented with tours like the one you have just given me.
    Your story of the coastal road reminds me of an incident my husband and I experienced more than 28 years ago. We were driving the scenic highway through the mountains of Virginia. Just ahead of us we saw a car go off the road and plunge down the highway. We pulled off onto a scenic overlook, a few feet forward and flagged down someone with a radio, who summoned help. We stayed until the people were rescued and then went on our way.
    But I have always believed that the driver was watching the view and not the bend in the road.
    Driving through intense scenery is truly dangerous.

    Reply
  27. I would love to go to New Zealand AND Australia. But I’m afraid I won’t make it.
    I will need to be contented with tours like the one you have just given me.
    Your story of the coastal road reminds me of an incident my husband and I experienced more than 28 years ago. We were driving the scenic highway through the mountains of Virginia. Just ahead of us we saw a car go off the road and plunge down the highway. We pulled off onto a scenic overlook, a few feet forward and flagged down someone with a radio, who summoned help. We stayed until the people were rescued and then went on our way.
    But I have always believed that the driver was watching the view and not the bend in the road.
    Driving through intense scenery is truly dangerous.

    Reply
  28. I would love to go to New Zealand AND Australia. But I’m afraid I won’t make it.
    I will need to be contented with tours like the one you have just given me.
    Your story of the coastal road reminds me of an incident my husband and I experienced more than 28 years ago. We were driving the scenic highway through the mountains of Virginia. Just ahead of us we saw a car go off the road and plunge down the highway. We pulled off onto a scenic overlook, a few feet forward and flagged down someone with a radio, who summoned help. We stayed until the people were rescued and then went on our way.
    But I have always believed that the driver was watching the view and not the bend in the road.
    Driving through intense scenery is truly dangerous.

    Reply
  29. I would love to go to New Zealand AND Australia. But I’m afraid I won’t make it.
    I will need to be contented with tours like the one you have just given me.
    Your story of the coastal road reminds me of an incident my husband and I experienced more than 28 years ago. We were driving the scenic highway through the mountains of Virginia. Just ahead of us we saw a car go off the road and plunge down the highway. We pulled off onto a scenic overlook, a few feet forward and flagged down someone with a radio, who summoned help. We stayed until the people were rescued and then went on our way.
    But I have always believed that the driver was watching the view and not the bend in the road.
    Driving through intense scenery is truly dangerous.

    Reply
  30. I would love to go to New Zealand AND Australia. But I’m afraid I won’t make it.
    I will need to be contented with tours like the one you have just given me.
    Your story of the coastal road reminds me of an incident my husband and I experienced more than 28 years ago. We were driving the scenic highway through the mountains of Virginia. Just ahead of us we saw a car go off the road and plunge down the highway. We pulled off onto a scenic overlook, a few feet forward and flagged down someone with a radio, who summoned help. We stayed until the people were rescued and then went on our way.
    But I have always believed that the driver was watching the view and not the bend in the road.
    Driving through intense scenery is truly dangerous.

    Reply
  31. I would love to go to New Zealand. It might be my pick for an all expenses paid vacation, or the other choice might be South Africa.
    Two of the most spectacular places I’ve been to, scenery wise, also had the most hair-raising roads, and although I’m glad I saw them I don’t necessarily want to go back. One was Yugoslavia, driving through the mountains to the coast of what is now Croatia. You would not believe the number of roadside memorials! At one point we had to take a detour because of a rock slide. The other was in the mountains of Yemen, winding roads with no guard rails and reckless drivers. It was amazing, some of the mountains were cultivated with dozens of narrow terraces, and others had little stone villages perched on the edges of cliffs. But I spent the first few days clutching the door handle and almost afraid to look down!

    Reply
  32. I would love to go to New Zealand. It might be my pick for an all expenses paid vacation, or the other choice might be South Africa.
    Two of the most spectacular places I’ve been to, scenery wise, also had the most hair-raising roads, and although I’m glad I saw them I don’t necessarily want to go back. One was Yugoslavia, driving through the mountains to the coast of what is now Croatia. You would not believe the number of roadside memorials! At one point we had to take a detour because of a rock slide. The other was in the mountains of Yemen, winding roads with no guard rails and reckless drivers. It was amazing, some of the mountains were cultivated with dozens of narrow terraces, and others had little stone villages perched on the edges of cliffs. But I spent the first few days clutching the door handle and almost afraid to look down!

    Reply
  33. I would love to go to New Zealand. It might be my pick for an all expenses paid vacation, or the other choice might be South Africa.
    Two of the most spectacular places I’ve been to, scenery wise, also had the most hair-raising roads, and although I’m glad I saw them I don’t necessarily want to go back. One was Yugoslavia, driving through the mountains to the coast of what is now Croatia. You would not believe the number of roadside memorials! At one point we had to take a detour because of a rock slide. The other was in the mountains of Yemen, winding roads with no guard rails and reckless drivers. It was amazing, some of the mountains were cultivated with dozens of narrow terraces, and others had little stone villages perched on the edges of cliffs. But I spent the first few days clutching the door handle and almost afraid to look down!

    Reply
  34. I would love to go to New Zealand. It might be my pick for an all expenses paid vacation, or the other choice might be South Africa.
    Two of the most spectacular places I’ve been to, scenery wise, also had the most hair-raising roads, and although I’m glad I saw them I don’t necessarily want to go back. One was Yugoslavia, driving through the mountains to the coast of what is now Croatia. You would not believe the number of roadside memorials! At one point we had to take a detour because of a rock slide. The other was in the mountains of Yemen, winding roads with no guard rails and reckless drivers. It was amazing, some of the mountains were cultivated with dozens of narrow terraces, and others had little stone villages perched on the edges of cliffs. But I spent the first few days clutching the door handle and almost afraid to look down!

    Reply
  35. I would love to go to New Zealand. It might be my pick for an all expenses paid vacation, or the other choice might be South Africa.
    Two of the most spectacular places I’ve been to, scenery wise, also had the most hair-raising roads, and although I’m glad I saw them I don’t necessarily want to go back. One was Yugoslavia, driving through the mountains to the coast of what is now Croatia. You would not believe the number of roadside memorials! At one point we had to take a detour because of a rock slide. The other was in the mountains of Yemen, winding roads with no guard rails and reckless drivers. It was amazing, some of the mountains were cultivated with dozens of narrow terraces, and others had little stone villages perched on the edges of cliffs. But I spent the first few days clutching the door handle and almost afraid to look down!

    Reply
  36. I have never visited New Zealand (or Australia either). Have always wanted to go to such beautiful places.
    I have loved the fields of flax in North Dakota. I have loved the green forests in Pennsylvania. I have loved the bayous of Louisiana. I have loved standing on the shore of Lake Michigan. I have loved the Pacific Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico. I have loved the wide prairies of Texas. In fact, I have found truly beautiful places nearly every where I have gone….sometimes you just have to seek them out.

    Reply
  37. I have never visited New Zealand (or Australia either). Have always wanted to go to such beautiful places.
    I have loved the fields of flax in North Dakota. I have loved the green forests in Pennsylvania. I have loved the bayous of Louisiana. I have loved standing on the shore of Lake Michigan. I have loved the Pacific Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico. I have loved the wide prairies of Texas. In fact, I have found truly beautiful places nearly every where I have gone….sometimes you just have to seek them out.

    Reply
  38. I have never visited New Zealand (or Australia either). Have always wanted to go to such beautiful places.
    I have loved the fields of flax in North Dakota. I have loved the green forests in Pennsylvania. I have loved the bayous of Louisiana. I have loved standing on the shore of Lake Michigan. I have loved the Pacific Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico. I have loved the wide prairies of Texas. In fact, I have found truly beautiful places nearly every where I have gone….sometimes you just have to seek them out.

    Reply
  39. I have never visited New Zealand (or Australia either). Have always wanted to go to such beautiful places.
    I have loved the fields of flax in North Dakota. I have loved the green forests in Pennsylvania. I have loved the bayous of Louisiana. I have loved standing on the shore of Lake Michigan. I have loved the Pacific Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico. I have loved the wide prairies of Texas. In fact, I have found truly beautiful places nearly every where I have gone….sometimes you just have to seek them out.

    Reply
  40. I have never visited New Zealand (or Australia either). Have always wanted to go to such beautiful places.
    I have loved the fields of flax in North Dakota. I have loved the green forests in Pennsylvania. I have loved the bayous of Louisiana. I have loved standing on the shore of Lake Michigan. I have loved the Pacific Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico. I have loved the wide prairies of Texas. In fact, I have found truly beautiful places nearly every where I have gone….sometimes you just have to seek them out.

    Reply
  41. I would love to visit Australia because I have a friend who lives there. But for as long as I remember I’ve wanted to see the British Isles. All of England, Scotland and Wales. The Lake District, Derbyshire, Cornwall, London. The museums! But it gets less and less a future reality and the years pass. Physically not up to it now. But I get to see those places when people share photos. It’s not the same as being there, but I’m still able to see the wonder and beauty that Annette Naish expressed in those places. What little I’ve seen of New Zealand looks majestic and awesome.

    Reply
  42. I would love to visit Australia because I have a friend who lives there. But for as long as I remember I’ve wanted to see the British Isles. All of England, Scotland and Wales. The Lake District, Derbyshire, Cornwall, London. The museums! But it gets less and less a future reality and the years pass. Physically not up to it now. But I get to see those places when people share photos. It’s not the same as being there, but I’m still able to see the wonder and beauty that Annette Naish expressed in those places. What little I’ve seen of New Zealand looks majestic and awesome.

    Reply
  43. I would love to visit Australia because I have a friend who lives there. But for as long as I remember I’ve wanted to see the British Isles. All of England, Scotland and Wales. The Lake District, Derbyshire, Cornwall, London. The museums! But it gets less and less a future reality and the years pass. Physically not up to it now. But I get to see those places when people share photos. It’s not the same as being there, but I’m still able to see the wonder and beauty that Annette Naish expressed in those places. What little I’ve seen of New Zealand looks majestic and awesome.

    Reply
  44. I would love to visit Australia because I have a friend who lives there. But for as long as I remember I’ve wanted to see the British Isles. All of England, Scotland and Wales. The Lake District, Derbyshire, Cornwall, London. The museums! But it gets less and less a future reality and the years pass. Physically not up to it now. But I get to see those places when people share photos. It’s not the same as being there, but I’m still able to see the wonder and beauty that Annette Naish expressed in those places. What little I’ve seen of New Zealand looks majestic and awesome.

    Reply
  45. I would love to visit Australia because I have a friend who lives there. But for as long as I remember I’ve wanted to see the British Isles. All of England, Scotland and Wales. The Lake District, Derbyshire, Cornwall, London. The museums! But it gets less and less a future reality and the years pass. Physically not up to it now. But I get to see those places when people share photos. It’s not the same as being there, but I’m still able to see the wonder and beauty that Annette Naish expressed in those places. What little I’ve seen of New Zealand looks majestic and awesome.

    Reply
  46. Barbara, yes, they were selling all kinds of products like that. That boiling mud is a bit scary, though. I heard a tale of two boys who were playing around near one of the pools and fell in — and were killed, of course. You can’t be rescued from boiling mud. Horrific.

    Reply
  47. Barbara, yes, they were selling all kinds of products like that. That boiling mud is a bit scary, though. I heard a tale of two boys who were playing around near one of the pools and fell in — and were killed, of course. You can’t be rescued from boiling mud. Horrific.

    Reply
  48. Barbara, yes, they were selling all kinds of products like that. That boiling mud is a bit scary, though. I heard a tale of two boys who were playing around near one of the pools and fell in — and were killed, of course. You can’t be rescued from boiling mud. Horrific.

    Reply
  49. Barbara, yes, they were selling all kinds of products like that. That boiling mud is a bit scary, though. I heard a tale of two boys who were playing around near one of the pools and fell in — and were killed, of course. You can’t be rescued from boiling mud. Horrific.

    Reply
  50. Barbara, yes, they were selling all kinds of products like that. That boiling mud is a bit scary, though. I heard a tale of two boys who were playing around near one of the pools and fell in — and were killed, of course. You can’t be rescued from boiling mud. Horrific.

    Reply
  51. Sue, that’s it exactly! The narrow windy road was dangerous enough but the lure of the scenery was the true danger. It was lucky you were there to call for help, and very lucky those people were able to be rescued.

    Reply
  52. Sue, that’s it exactly! The narrow windy road was dangerous enough but the lure of the scenery was the true danger. It was lucky you were there to call for help, and very lucky those people were able to be rescued.

    Reply
  53. Sue, that’s it exactly! The narrow windy road was dangerous enough but the lure of the scenery was the true danger. It was lucky you were there to call for help, and very lucky those people were able to be rescued.

    Reply
  54. Sue, that’s it exactly! The narrow windy road was dangerous enough but the lure of the scenery was the true danger. It was lucky you were there to call for help, and very lucky those people were able to be rescued.

    Reply
  55. Sue, that’s it exactly! The narrow windy road was dangerous enough but the lure of the scenery was the true danger. It was lucky you were there to call for help, and very lucky those people were able to be rescued.

    Reply
  56. Karin, I would indeed believe the number of roadside memorials you saw. I had a similar experience in the mountains of Yugoslavia/Greece many years ago. We were hurtling down a hair-raising road in a bus, and all the locals on the bus were crossing themselves on every corner — which added to our fears. I thought they were crossing themselves in a “please let us survive this bus journey” way (I still suspect some were) but later we learned it was in honor of every memorial on the road.
    I’ve never been to Yemen — would love to go, but yes, scary roads are everywhere.

    Reply
  57. Karin, I would indeed believe the number of roadside memorials you saw. I had a similar experience in the mountains of Yugoslavia/Greece many years ago. We were hurtling down a hair-raising road in a bus, and all the locals on the bus were crossing themselves on every corner — which added to our fears. I thought they were crossing themselves in a “please let us survive this bus journey” way (I still suspect some were) but later we learned it was in honor of every memorial on the road.
    I’ve never been to Yemen — would love to go, but yes, scary roads are everywhere.

    Reply
  58. Karin, I would indeed believe the number of roadside memorials you saw. I had a similar experience in the mountains of Yugoslavia/Greece many years ago. We were hurtling down a hair-raising road in a bus, and all the locals on the bus were crossing themselves on every corner — which added to our fears. I thought they were crossing themselves in a “please let us survive this bus journey” way (I still suspect some were) but later we learned it was in honor of every memorial on the road.
    I’ve never been to Yemen — would love to go, but yes, scary roads are everywhere.

    Reply
  59. Karin, I would indeed believe the number of roadside memorials you saw. I had a similar experience in the mountains of Yugoslavia/Greece many years ago. We were hurtling down a hair-raising road in a bus, and all the locals on the bus were crossing themselves on every corner — which added to our fears. I thought they were crossing themselves in a “please let us survive this bus journey” way (I still suspect some were) but later we learned it was in honor of every memorial on the road.
    I’ve never been to Yemen — would love to go, but yes, scary roads are everywhere.

    Reply
  60. Karin, I would indeed believe the number of roadside memorials you saw. I had a similar experience in the mountains of Yugoslavia/Greece many years ago. We were hurtling down a hair-raising road in a bus, and all the locals on the bus were crossing themselves on every corner — which added to our fears. I thought they were crossing themselves in a “please let us survive this bus journey” way (I still suspect some were) but later we learned it was in honor of every memorial on the road.
    I’ve never been to Yemen — would love to go, but yes, scary roads are everywhere.

    Reply
  61. Annette, I’ve done quite a bit of traveling in my time, but your post reminded me of what I’ve said most times when people ask me which place is my favorite — the world is a beautiful place. There is beauty everywhere, and sometimes we forget to notice the beauty of our own home surrounds.

    Reply
  62. Annette, I’ve done quite a bit of traveling in my time, but your post reminded me of what I’ve said most times when people ask me which place is my favorite — the world is a beautiful place. There is beauty everywhere, and sometimes we forget to notice the beauty of our own home surrounds.

    Reply
  63. Annette, I’ve done quite a bit of traveling in my time, but your post reminded me of what I’ve said most times when people ask me which place is my favorite — the world is a beautiful place. There is beauty everywhere, and sometimes we forget to notice the beauty of our own home surrounds.

    Reply
  64. Annette, I’ve done quite a bit of traveling in my time, but your post reminded me of what I’ve said most times when people ask me which place is my favorite — the world is a beautiful place. There is beauty everywhere, and sometimes we forget to notice the beauty of our own home surrounds.

    Reply
  65. Annette, I’ve done quite a bit of traveling in my time, but your post reminded me of what I’ve said most times when people ask me which place is my favorite — the world is a beautiful place. There is beauty everywhere, and sometimes we forget to notice the beauty of our own home surrounds.

    Reply
  66. I have never been to New Zealand, but if I could go anywhere, it would at or near the top of my list. I’ve been in love with descriptions of it since I first began reading Essie Summers’ romance novels in my early teens.

    Reply
  67. I have never been to New Zealand, but if I could go anywhere, it would at or near the top of my list. I’ve been in love with descriptions of it since I first began reading Essie Summers’ romance novels in my early teens.

    Reply
  68. I have never been to New Zealand, but if I could go anywhere, it would at or near the top of my list. I’ve been in love with descriptions of it since I first began reading Essie Summers’ romance novels in my early teens.

    Reply
  69. I have never been to New Zealand, but if I could go anywhere, it would at or near the top of my list. I’ve been in love with descriptions of it since I first began reading Essie Summers’ romance novels in my early teens.

    Reply
  70. I have never been to New Zealand, but if I could go anywhere, it would at or near the top of my list. I’ve been in love with descriptions of it since I first began reading Essie Summers’ romance novels in my early teens.

    Reply
  71. Michelle, isn’t it wonderful how much virtual traveling we can do with the web now? Yes, it’s not the same as being there, but it’s pretty wonderful all the same. I can set a scene in a book and know that most readers know what I’m describing, even though they haven’t visited Bath or the UK.
    I hope you win a trip to the UK one day soon!

    Reply
  72. Michelle, isn’t it wonderful how much virtual traveling we can do with the web now? Yes, it’s not the same as being there, but it’s pretty wonderful all the same. I can set a scene in a book and know that most readers know what I’m describing, even though they haven’t visited Bath or the UK.
    I hope you win a trip to the UK one day soon!

    Reply
  73. Michelle, isn’t it wonderful how much virtual traveling we can do with the web now? Yes, it’s not the same as being there, but it’s pretty wonderful all the same. I can set a scene in a book and know that most readers know what I’m describing, even though they haven’t visited Bath or the UK.
    I hope you win a trip to the UK one day soon!

    Reply
  74. Michelle, isn’t it wonderful how much virtual traveling we can do with the web now? Yes, it’s not the same as being there, but it’s pretty wonderful all the same. I can set a scene in a book and know that most readers know what I’m describing, even though they haven’t visited Bath or the UK.
    I hope you win a trip to the UK one day soon!

    Reply
  75. Michelle, isn’t it wonderful how much virtual traveling we can do with the web now? Yes, it’s not the same as being there, but it’s pretty wonderful all the same. I can set a scene in a book and know that most readers know what I’m describing, even though they haven’t visited Bath or the UK.
    I hope you win a trip to the UK one day soon!

    Reply
  76. Jane, so many people have mentioned Essie Summers to me over the years, and I finally spotted one of her books in a secondhand bookshop.
    I read it and knew at once why people remember her so well. Her descriptions of the NZ bush are lovely. I think Lucy Walker did a similar thing with Western Australian descriptions.

    Reply
  77. Jane, so many people have mentioned Essie Summers to me over the years, and I finally spotted one of her books in a secondhand bookshop.
    I read it and knew at once why people remember her so well. Her descriptions of the NZ bush are lovely. I think Lucy Walker did a similar thing with Western Australian descriptions.

    Reply
  78. Jane, so many people have mentioned Essie Summers to me over the years, and I finally spotted one of her books in a secondhand bookshop.
    I read it and knew at once why people remember her so well. Her descriptions of the NZ bush are lovely. I think Lucy Walker did a similar thing with Western Australian descriptions.

    Reply
  79. Jane, so many people have mentioned Essie Summers to me over the years, and I finally spotted one of her books in a secondhand bookshop.
    I read it and knew at once why people remember her so well. Her descriptions of the NZ bush are lovely. I think Lucy Walker did a similar thing with Western Australian descriptions.

    Reply
  80. Jane, so many people have mentioned Essie Summers to me over the years, and I finally spotted one of her books in a secondhand bookshop.
    I read it and knew at once why people remember her so well. Her descriptions of the NZ bush are lovely. I think Lucy Walker did a similar thing with Western Australian descriptions.

    Reply
  81. I visited New Zealand in April 1997. I went from Keri Keri and Omapere up north down to Dunedin and Queenstown, not missing Rotorua and its bubbly spots. It was autumn and I remember the glory of the poplars, like so many bright yellow flames.
    It was before Peter Jackson! Before the Internet also, so I started organizing one full year before. I went to London’s House of New Zealand and I wrote from France to Visitors centres in New Zealand, explaining what I was looking for (mainly nice settings). They kindly booked some stunning rooms for me, with magnificent views, especially in Wanaka. (Thanks again, Wanaka Visitor Centre, you were great!!) I was truly enchanted by my whole trip!
    Thank you, Anne, for the lovely tour and pictures that have brought back such pleasant memories

    Reply
  82. I visited New Zealand in April 1997. I went from Keri Keri and Omapere up north down to Dunedin and Queenstown, not missing Rotorua and its bubbly spots. It was autumn and I remember the glory of the poplars, like so many bright yellow flames.
    It was before Peter Jackson! Before the Internet also, so I started organizing one full year before. I went to London’s House of New Zealand and I wrote from France to Visitors centres in New Zealand, explaining what I was looking for (mainly nice settings). They kindly booked some stunning rooms for me, with magnificent views, especially in Wanaka. (Thanks again, Wanaka Visitor Centre, you were great!!) I was truly enchanted by my whole trip!
    Thank you, Anne, for the lovely tour and pictures that have brought back such pleasant memories

    Reply
  83. I visited New Zealand in April 1997. I went from Keri Keri and Omapere up north down to Dunedin and Queenstown, not missing Rotorua and its bubbly spots. It was autumn and I remember the glory of the poplars, like so many bright yellow flames.
    It was before Peter Jackson! Before the Internet also, so I started organizing one full year before. I went to London’s House of New Zealand and I wrote from France to Visitors centres in New Zealand, explaining what I was looking for (mainly nice settings). They kindly booked some stunning rooms for me, with magnificent views, especially in Wanaka. (Thanks again, Wanaka Visitor Centre, you were great!!) I was truly enchanted by my whole trip!
    Thank you, Anne, for the lovely tour and pictures that have brought back such pleasant memories

    Reply
  84. I visited New Zealand in April 1997. I went from Keri Keri and Omapere up north down to Dunedin and Queenstown, not missing Rotorua and its bubbly spots. It was autumn and I remember the glory of the poplars, like so many bright yellow flames.
    It was before Peter Jackson! Before the Internet also, so I started organizing one full year before. I went to London’s House of New Zealand and I wrote from France to Visitors centres in New Zealand, explaining what I was looking for (mainly nice settings). They kindly booked some stunning rooms for me, with magnificent views, especially in Wanaka. (Thanks again, Wanaka Visitor Centre, you were great!!) I was truly enchanted by my whole trip!
    Thank you, Anne, for the lovely tour and pictures that have brought back such pleasant memories

    Reply
  85. I visited New Zealand in April 1997. I went from Keri Keri and Omapere up north down to Dunedin and Queenstown, not missing Rotorua and its bubbly spots. It was autumn and I remember the glory of the poplars, like so many bright yellow flames.
    It was before Peter Jackson! Before the Internet also, so I started organizing one full year before. I went to London’s House of New Zealand and I wrote from France to Visitors centres in New Zealand, explaining what I was looking for (mainly nice settings). They kindly booked some stunning rooms for me, with magnificent views, especially in Wanaka. (Thanks again, Wanaka Visitor Centre, you were great!!) I was truly enchanted by my whole trip!
    Thank you, Anne, for the lovely tour and pictures that have brought back such pleasant memories

    Reply
  86. Christine, sounds like they looked after you well — excellent planning on your part. I’d love to see NZ in autumn –I’ve seen it in Summer and early spring — never autumn. They have a lot of exotic (ie non-indigenous) trees that have been planted since the early colonist days, more than we have here. Here autumn colour shows up mainly in the towns and in an occasional splash or a line of golden poplars.
    My parents always wanted to visit Canada to see the autumn colour — me too.

    Reply
  87. Christine, sounds like they looked after you well — excellent planning on your part. I’d love to see NZ in autumn –I’ve seen it in Summer and early spring — never autumn. They have a lot of exotic (ie non-indigenous) trees that have been planted since the early colonist days, more than we have here. Here autumn colour shows up mainly in the towns and in an occasional splash or a line of golden poplars.
    My parents always wanted to visit Canada to see the autumn colour — me too.

    Reply
  88. Christine, sounds like they looked after you well — excellent planning on your part. I’d love to see NZ in autumn –I’ve seen it in Summer and early spring — never autumn. They have a lot of exotic (ie non-indigenous) trees that have been planted since the early colonist days, more than we have here. Here autumn colour shows up mainly in the towns and in an occasional splash or a line of golden poplars.
    My parents always wanted to visit Canada to see the autumn colour — me too.

    Reply
  89. Christine, sounds like they looked after you well — excellent planning on your part. I’d love to see NZ in autumn –I’ve seen it in Summer and early spring — never autumn. They have a lot of exotic (ie non-indigenous) trees that have been planted since the early colonist days, more than we have here. Here autumn colour shows up mainly in the towns and in an occasional splash or a line of golden poplars.
    My parents always wanted to visit Canada to see the autumn colour — me too.

    Reply
  90. Christine, sounds like they looked after you well — excellent planning on your part. I’d love to see NZ in autumn –I’ve seen it in Summer and early spring — never autumn. They have a lot of exotic (ie non-indigenous) trees that have been planted since the early colonist days, more than we have here. Here autumn colour shows up mainly in the towns and in an occasional splash or a line of golden poplars.
    My parents always wanted to visit Canada to see the autumn colour — me too.

    Reply
  91. I’ve also been to Vermont and Quebec in autumn 😉 so I wholeheartedly agree! Autumn there is a wonder. The red and yellow are so incredible it looks as if they could only have been handpainted by some mad land art artist! Hope you’ll get to see them.

    Reply
  92. I’ve also been to Vermont and Quebec in autumn 😉 so I wholeheartedly agree! Autumn there is a wonder. The red and yellow are so incredible it looks as if they could only have been handpainted by some mad land art artist! Hope you’ll get to see them.

    Reply
  93. I’ve also been to Vermont and Quebec in autumn 😉 so I wholeheartedly agree! Autumn there is a wonder. The red and yellow are so incredible it looks as if they could only have been handpainted by some mad land art artist! Hope you’ll get to see them.

    Reply
  94. I’ve also been to Vermont and Quebec in autumn 😉 so I wholeheartedly agree! Autumn there is a wonder. The red and yellow are so incredible it looks as if they could only have been handpainted by some mad land art artist! Hope you’ll get to see them.

    Reply
  95. I’ve also been to Vermont and Quebec in autumn 😉 so I wholeheartedly agree! Autumn there is a wonder. The red and yellow are so incredible it looks as if they could only have been handpainted by some mad land art artist! Hope you’ll get to see them.

    Reply

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