Blogs from Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand, Oceania

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Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Christchurch March 29th 2022

All good things come to an end,or so a famous saying goes.And the 50th Anniversary Tour of the Top of the South Island is no different. We awoke to a rather overcast day in Christchurch with a cool autumnal feel about the weather. However before we arose to get the day underway our minds went to our next holiday in 2024 and hopefully a resurrection of the postponed BBA of 2020 when we had planned to travel again to Europe taking in islands of the Mediterranean,mainland Europe and Great Britain and Ireland.Now that COVID around the world seems to be becoming an illness that if you catch it, you mostly get over it relatively quickly,and you can protect yourself by being vaccinated and as countries open their borders to traveller's that we might just be able ... read more
Colombo Street,Christchurch looking south
Cranes at the ready to take off the damaged roof of the Cathedral
Huge mural depicting what used to be there before the earthquakes

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Christchurch March 28th 2022

We have just a short 50minute drive down to Greymouth today before we give the Corolla back and join the Trans Alpine train to head to Christchurch. So getting up and having breakfast didn’t seem a priority to us. The day wasn’t quite as good as it has been for the last few days with more cloud overhead and out to sea although there was promise that it might clear once the sun could poke through. Breakfast was very relaxing in the restaurant looking out at the Tasman Sea. We had either been too late for our downstairs neighbours from the campervan or too early as we didn’t see them. The resort complex is sited on both sides of the highway with an underpass for guests to go to and from their units and the restaurant/bar. ... read more
Pancake rocks
Classic view of Pancake rocks
Greymouth stop bank

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Christchurch March 10th 2022

The cloud that had started to roll over the hills on Banks Peninsula yesterday were forecast to spread over the city overnight and the prediction was correct.However,the cloud is also forecast to clear as the day wears on and afternoon should be sunny with 20C. So we took a dollar each way and dressed our top for summer and bottom for autumn and hoped for the best that we wouldn’t get too warm if the sun came out as predicted or too cool if the cloud cover remained all day. It was another free ride into the city and we alighted the #28 at the modern, clean and well organised bus interchange. Tauranga city could learn a lot from Christchurch as the Tauranga bus interchange is quite frankly a disgrace with undesirable people loitering requiring at ... read more
Facade of the Post Office looking well restored
Reconstruction of the Cathedral is underway
Autumn tints on the Avon River

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Christchurch March 8th 2022

I was mulling over what to call this blog given that our travels over next 3 weeks are not set up like the usual BBA(Benvie Budget Adventure) and nor are we overseas somewhere exotic to New Zealand, where the earlier BBA blogs have all been set. So as we have just celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary and we are going to be taking in the sights of the top of the South Island, New Zealand, ‘The 50th Anniversary Top of the South Tour ‘was so named. We were very well organised this morning for our departure to Tauranga Airport and our 11am flight to Christchurch. Not at all like 11 months ago when we also travelled to the South Island for a 3 week tour around the south of the South Island. What with having to ... read more
Bealey Avenue,Christchurch
A dozen Bluff oysters at The Bealey,Christchurch

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Christchurch January 19th 2022

Five months after a magnitude 7.1 earthquake, centred near Darfield, Christchurch, an even more damaging quake struck on 22 February 2011. That shallow, 6.3 magnitude quake, just 10 kilometres from the centre of Christchurch, caused the greatest ground acceleration ever recorded in New Zealand. The earthquake claimed the lives of 185 people of and injured many more. Following the devastating earthquake as part of the city redevelopment a new waterfront has been created along the Ōtākaro/Avon River to make it easier to access river front businesses and green spaces. Whariki Mats welcome you to this walkway and along it’s path. The traditional weaving designs have been adapted using stone pavers.Each whāriki is an arrangement of natural stone pavers of varying shades and colours. The Canterbury Earthquake National Memorial was designed as two distinct areas either side ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Christchurch May 11th 2021

The weather forecast today for Lake Tekapo is ominous with snow predicted down to 600 metres and Tekapo township sits at around 700 metres. So the thought that there could be driving difficulties through Burkes Pass, also at 700 metres, was at the front of our mind as we started to pack up and get ready to hit the road. We filled the Corolla at the local Challenge petrol station which had us still trying to work out how petrol in a number of the places we have passed through, is cheaper than what we pay in Tauranga despite the fact that the commodity has to be trucked from whatever South Island port it arrives into before it can be pumped into our car. The weather overhead for now was partly cloudy and the temperature still ... read more
Top of a hill just outside Fairlie with the southerly front in the distance
Rakaia Gorge
The braided Rakaia River after the bridge and gorge

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Christchurch April 17th 2021

Planning a holiday, when you are independent travellers, can often take longer than the holiday trip itself and the upcoming Grand South Island Tour fits this absolutely. Mind you planning is always mixed with anticipation and this is really what makes travel such a wonderful experience. We love the anticipation and honestly can’t get enough of it. Not that this trip will take us to exotic places with names one has difficulty in pronouncing. Rather it will be a trip down memory lane in many respects but with some places added in that we have never visited before or just previously passed through. Now that is an awful admission for us, as for many years we had told people, who were interested in our travels that ,yes, we had seen all New Zealand had to offer ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Christchurch March 16th 2020

After checking out of the Sudima Hotel, near Christchurch Airport, we were away in our faithful RAV 4 (thank you Rodney) headed to Nelson. The staff at the Sudima are first class, always friendly and very helpful. Wayne had been there for the four nights prior and Vicki met him there on Thursday. The roads in New Zealand, if this one is anything to go by, are organized not overly busy and motorists who are generally cruising along enjoying the scenery. Our first stop is at Hanmer Springs around 2 hours North of Christchurch. A really pretty almost alpine like village filled with touristy shops, cafes and friendly locals. There was a market in town as well as a big gathering of Ducati motor bikes, more about them later. After a coffee and a walk around ... read more
Christchurch Cathedral
Christchurch Cathedral
Streetscape Christchurch City

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Christchurch March 14th 2020

This was probably a pretty city prior to the quake, but there is now sadly lots of areas which time and money have not allowed to be rebuilt. It is happening slowly but there are lots of car parking places which are essentially where buildings were and still have not been redeveloped since the devastating earthquake of 2011. Both the Anglican and Catholic Cathedrals were severely damaged and still have not been rebuilt. The Anglican Cathedral has suffered from too much political interference which has cost money and delayed whatever the plans are. The Catholic rebuild has been thwarted by the Church buying a plot of land which has now been colonised by rare birds so they are not allowed to build on it! Regent street, which is a pretty street of shops with balconied buildings ... read more
Markets around ruined Cathedral
By the River Avon
Regent Street

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Christchurch February 7th 2020

Ještě než se definitivně rozloučíme s Novým Zélandem, prohlédneme si největší město Jižního ostrova nacházející se v regionu Canterbury, Christchurch. Od té doby, co se město stalo obětí ničivého zemětřesení (zhruba před devíti lety), prošlo úžasnou změnou. Většina budov byla zničena nebo značně poškozena, ale i tak tu stojí původní kostel (i když s velkými podpěrami), už jen část "kontejnerového městečka" (dopravní kontejnery sloužily dříve jako tržnice) a nádherná botanická zahrada. Jinak má město velmi výrazně moderní ráz. Christchurch umí mít své kouzlo a být romantickým místem. Na řece Avon si můžete pronajmout pramici i s pikolíkem, který Vás na ní proveze nebo naskočit na historickou tramvaj. Na břehu řeky v parku si můžete posedět, třeba i na upraveném trávníku, nikdo Vám za to nevynadá j... read more
Můžete naskočit na jednu z historických tramvají
Christchurch je město 21. století
Hovězí steaky umí opravdu skvěle




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