Christchurch then back to Nelson and the Abel Tasman Pennisula

Published: March 24th 2017
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Heading to Christchurch, the flat land is an agricultural mecca and also has huge warehouses for exporting wool. The highway is packed with large trucks due to the northern road closures from earthquake damage.
Humungous boulders, who can resist? These giant spheres are scattered along the coastline at Oamaru. Historians say that dinosaur bones have been found within these rock formations.
The downtown reveals severe destruction and rebuilding called ReSTART. Make-shift stores are creatively housed in shipping containers and makes this the largest container use in the world.
Away from the flat land and back to mountains, tree tunnels and unending road construction. The only half way spot to spend the evening is teeny Murchison that has a population of 496. Surprisingly, our hotel room is OK. We walk the town (took only a few minutes) and stumble on a cool antique shop named Dust and Rust (kinda like us). Murchison is a hot spot for white water rae
Back to Nelson to take the ferry tomorrow for the north island. We are ¾'s through touring all of NZ. First though, is a stop at the artsy town of Mapua. Entering the Maritime Museum, the curator Annette informs us she personally donated many of the Maori artifacts she had inherited from her great-grandfather. She used to do a great deal of climbing in fting.
Downtown Nelson takes us to the Jens Hansen studio to see the famour ring from the movie Lord of the Rings. Unfortunately, Jens has passed away and his son Halfdan now manages the workshop.
Returning on the ferry, a couple inform us that he is working towards cycling the two islands. However, a very young Dutch pair joins the group, and state that they are WALKING all of New Zealand, and have just spent three months completing the South island. They are bombarded with questions.
Supper is delicious at The Soprano restaurant in Lower Hutt.

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26th March 2017

Lower Hutt
Cathy and Chris, it looks like you are having an amazing trip. Lower Hutt was were Rob received amazing care after breaking his jaw.

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