Glimpses of New Zealand

Our first stay in New Zealand, in December last year, between our arrival here and our trip to Brazil, was an intense one. A few immediate repairs from the eventful passage from Fiji, arrangements to have Pesto safely secured during our long absence, and the eventual escapes to visit the surroundings with friends.

Of the latter, we didn’t have the time to do much, but the little we did left sweet memories of time well spent with dear friends. And provided a good foretaste of what awaited us here on the way back from Brazil.

We made landfall to the Bay of Islands, at the Northern tip of New Zealand. In Addition to being the closest viable port of call from Fiji, it is a safe and beautiful place. This is where Pesto has been moored since:

 

To us, New Zealand seemed as a blend of Maori culture …

 

… and Colonial heritage …

 

… nestled on a beautiful setting:

 

One day, Adriana took the kids to visit the Waitangi Treaty Grounds – the place where the Maori and British formalized their agreement to live together in New Zealand, back in 1840. There, the kids could  appreciate elements of this incumbent culture …

 

… and experiment playing Cricket (which they seemingly mistook for Baseball):

 

It was early summer and, even though there was still some freshness in the air, the sun was really biting, and shadows were appreciated:

 

Our first impression (later being confirmed time and again) was that everything here is tidy and well appointed …

 

… like this garden pathway, for instance. Beautiful and inviting, without being over-manicured:

 

Speaking of that, New Zealand is dressed in rich flora – partly native, partly brought in by the settlers – all profusely maintained and cared for. And being the beginning of summer, it was an explosion of colors:

 

New Zealanders appreciate it, and know this is one of the draws of tourism to their country. Hiking trails (here denominated “Tracks”) are everywhere, and in most cases neatly signed (note the twin languages – English and Maori) …

 

… and marked:

 

One of such Tracks, near the township of Keri-Keri, started off this beautiful centenary tree (which the kids didn’t resist climbing) …

 

… through this picture-perfect lily-pond …

 

… and on to this waterfall:

 

What a great photo-op it was – pity I didn’t resist photobombing:

 

No, seriously, here is the “right” one:

 

Back from the Track the kids still had energy in store to try to fall off a bridge …

 

… and throw themselves in a well:

 

(None of which happened, by the way. But Raquel did jump off the top of that waterfall)

The ubiquitous flora …

 

… inspired Raquel to get a themed décor on her face at the Keri-Keri farmers’ market:

 

And if the flowers are a beauty, the fruits are to die for. These organically grown strawberries were almost the size of plums, and tasted so good !

 

On another of our outings, in the fine company of our friends from sv Enough, we visited a boutique vineyard and winery, near the small town of Russell:

 

While the adults treated themselves to a delicious gourmet lunch …

 

… the kids enjoyed the place their own ways:

 

It was very early in the season, and whereas the grapes were still green on the vines …

 

… the wine flowed wonderfully at the bar on that beautiful 5th of December !

 

But everywhere we went, the Christmas décor reminded us of the impeding trip to Brazil:

 

It was bittersweet. On the one hand we would forego the opportunity of enjoying the New Zealand summer in company of beloved cruising friends. At the same time, we would get to spend plenty of quality time with family and friends of other times back in Brazil.

Choices.

For the time we stayed in Terra-Brasilis these memories remained close to heart, and served as a glimpse of a place we looked forward to explore thoroughly upon our return early in 2018.

 

4 Replies to “Glimpses of New Zealand”

  1. Hi Mitra ! Good to hear from you too. It was about time to come back with it. More to come. Stay tuned !

  2. Que máximo!! Clics maravilhosos de lugares incríveis… parabéns família linda 👏👏

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