Page 2 of yvrbhoy Travel Blog Posts

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Marlborough » Picton January 9th 2015

Geo: -41.2929, 174.006Today was a spectacular day in the Marlborough Sound with a sparkling, sunny arrival into Picton Harbour via the narrow Tory Channel and Queen Charlotte Sound between Arapawa Island and the East and West Heads. New Zealand's total population is approximately 4.5M. Half live north of Taipo and Napier, 1.5 in Auckland. Picton gets Australia's weather 3 days later. Wellington, on the north island is to the East of Picton, as the islands overlap and the two are connected by regular ferries. Christchurch is a 5hr drive south. The southern island is a 4 hour drive wide and 12 hr drive long. We noticed that the ferries had single entry and also accommodated trains. The ferry is squeezed into a dock, connoted by the squeal of rubber as it docks, to ensure alignment of ... read more
Picton Harbour
Ferry from Victoria Domain
Victoria Domain Hike

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » East Coast » Napier January 8th 2015

Geo: -39.4917, 176.916Today was special! No shore excursions, as an old friend and associate who helped spearhead the establishment of Class Software down under lives with his wife and three kids in between Hastings and Napier, the Twin Cities or the Bay Cities.Scott and his lovely wife Emma agreed to meet us at the shuttle bus drop off and tour us around the area. allowing us to catch up at the same time.The total population of the area is 128,000 and it is located in Hawkes Bay, which is also the name of the region. Napier is smaller but is seen as major centre due to its proximity to the sea and airport. The City of Napier was razed due to a major earthquake in 1931 and the town had to be rebuilt, the result of ... read more
Port of Napier
Old Prison - Napier
Scott & Alex @ Napier Prisoner's Guarden

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Rotorua January 7th 2015

Geo: -38.1398, 176.247Our first port of call was Tauranga, whose Maori name means Calm Waters - protected by Long Island from open ocean. New Zealand means Long White Cloud, as the Maori had never seen snow and the mountains were covered. The area, including Mt Maunganui and Papamoa with long white sand beaches, is a big retirement community for Auckland and a population of about 118,000. It is New Zealand's busiest port and is in the Bay of Plenty, which was discovered by Captain James Cook in 1769, as he observed it was well populated and looked very fertile.The area was actually discovered around 1350, when the Te Arawa canoe is said to have landed close by at Maketu, further south on the coast, after sailing from Hawaiki (Polynesia) under the command of famous Maori navigator ... read more
Gysers Video
Hot Mud Pools

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Auckland January 6th 2015

Geo: -36.8474, 174.766I was struck by travelling for the first time in a long time outside of my normal routine. Can't remember the name of the movie, but George Clooney played a frequent flyer and I could relate to much of that movie due to my own international air travels. Stewart also commented to us that it was very different travelling without Dad :)Anyway, I found myself a little stressed, the previous night and this morning, wanting to make sure that we didn't miss anything important, as I had never been on a cruise before! Alarm set for 6:30 to make sure we were all re-packed and bags out for pickup before 8am.Down to the banquet hall for breakfast at around 8:30 and boy was I right! I felt young again - relatively, but also like ... read more
See Ya Auckland
Sleeping Quarters

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Auckland January 5th 2015

Geo: -36.8474, 174.766After a LONG arrival day, Day Two got off to a slower start. Wakeup at 9am local time - noon back home, so time change excuse (NZ is day ahead and 3 hrs behind Vancouver)!! Coffee press in our room - BONUS!!. Tech challenges with the Travel Blog - mobile overwriting web input upon syncing. Email catchup and the like. Before we knew it the morning was by us.We set out across Grafton Bridge to get to other side of the city freeway system and tour the Auckland War Memorial Museum and wander round Auckland Domain (their version of Stanley Park), which is wait for it . . in another volcanic crater! On the other side of the bridge was a small village with a Turkish restaurant where we got fantastic coffee and a ... read more
Cafe Karedeniz
Bush in a Tizzy
Park Hill Climb

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Auckland January 4th 2015

Geo: -36.8474, 174.766Arrived at the Langham and as expected our room was not available until 3pm. Walked downtown to the Harbour for coffee and breakfast. Had breakfast at the Hilton on Princess Wharf. Checked out the wharfs and saw Celebrity Solstice (departing tonight) which will be a couple days ahead of us on pretty much same route. Almost 3,000 passengers, compared to our 700, and it shows as sold out!!The late morning and early afternoon brought . . . . Wait for it! Good lord!!! Shopping!! I didn't even like shopping when I was skinny! Now I HATE it - changing rooms surrounded with mirrors!! However, I scored a pair of slacks, 2 dress shirts and 2 tees :) Bonnie did even better. I was told that I was VERY patient. It was a decent walk ... read more
Botswana Butchery Dinner

Oceania » New Zealand January 4th 2015

Geo: -36.8474, 174.766Arrived at 6am. Lost a day in travel/time change. Auckland is 1 day ahead and 3 hrs behind Vancouver. Had a nice drive through the surrounding area on a quiet, sunny, Sunday morning from the airport with a great driver. Turns out he also drove Prime Minister Harper and his daughter, so we felt privileged!.Diverted up an extinct volcano, there are 50 in the region, to Mount Eden - wonderful panoramic views of the area around Auckland. There was a thin fog hanging over the City, but lush green everywhere.The driver was kind enough to catch Bonnie and I in a photo with Auckland in the background and we also saw the home of the All Blacks rugby team - Eden Stadium. We were parked right on the rim of the extinct crater which ... read more
All Blacks Home Pitch - Eden Park
Eden Crater
Auckland over the Eden Crater

North America » Canada » British Columbia » Port Moody January 2nd 2015

Geo: 49.283, -122.853An envisioned trip to Bora Bora for our 25th was nixed as we are not really beach people, dont like laying around on the beach and like to be active when we travel - plus we are too old for the beach (swim suit old). Well maybe a Mediterranean cruise instead, but Alex has never been on a cruise and is not too sure, plus we have been lucky enough to have visited 2/3 of the ports of call anyway. North Europe, Scandinavia and the Baltic? No that is in October - too cold!!Well let's try New Zealand, Australia and French Polynesia? What? 30 days is pretty long? Go big or go home! Spoil yourselves to make it a trip of a lifetime, as 25 years is a lot to celebrate, especially if you ... read more
Checkin - Air New Zealand
NZ 83 Boeing 777-200

North America » Canada » British Columbia » Richmond January 2nd 2015

Geo: 49.1632, -123.137Departed on time - 6:30 pm PST. Colin was our flight attendant - a nice bloke from London, who unfortunately was a Chelsea fan :(A very comfortable experience in Business Class Premium. Yes spoiled, but have to treat my bride right for putting up with me for 25 years and it is a 14 hour flight, which is a bit long for a big man!!Watched "This is Where I Leave You", which reminded me, despite their intricacies and idiosyncrasies, how special and funny families are, as well as how much we miss our fathers :(Bonnie indicated afterward that she had seen it previously and was not impressed. I quite enjoyed it! First time in a pod that converted to a bed. Slept for a couple of hours then woke up around midnight and watched ... read more
Cheers Air NZ
Auckland from the Air

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