• A place to rest at the water’s edge

Quail Island – A Hidden Treasure

November 30th, 2018|Tags: , , , , |

Nestled in Lyttelton Harbour and surrounded by the Port Hills, Quail Island is certainly a one of a kind location. Canterbury’s largest island, it occupies 81 hectares within the harbour and is a haven for a variety of flora and fauna. Treasured by conservationists and gentle trampers alike, its beauty is of a peaceful, solid, [...]

  • River riding at its best!

Southern Lake Linking

November 30th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

Fiordland, a paradise packed with dramatic landscapes, and blessed with plentiful huts and hiking tracks including three Great Walks; yet surprisingly barren of cycle trails. Wheels of change are in motion though. As a result of the incredible efforts of the Fiordland Trails Trust, the tread of my tyres can now easily explore the fringes [...]

Kaikōura Museum

November 30th, 2018|Tags: , , |

Earthquakes, whales and crayfish have a long history in this small east coast settlement. With two mountain ranges behind it and a canyon of epic proportions offshore, it is a marine wonderland. I have been to Kaikōura many times since the 1970s, though the majority of my trips have been in the last 20 years; [...]

Kaikoura Rebuild Earns Awards

November 30th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , |

Recently, New Zealanders marked the second anniversary of the Kaikōura earthquake that hit at two minutes past midnight on November 14, 2016. The 7.8 magnitude quake ripped through the earth from Culverden, 70km south of Kaikōura, to Seddon, 90km north of Kaikōura, and out to sea. GeoNet described the 160km rupture as the earth ‘unzipping’ [...]

  • Sunset from Titirangi-Kaiti Hill. Picture by Damon Meade

First to See the Light

November 28th, 2018|Tags: , , , , |

New arrivals to Gisborne are awestruck by the little beachfront city on the east coast of the North Island, encircled by a half moon of green hills. Travellers are also discovering the place. They are amazed and delighted to have discovered a place of such prosperity, peace and space, where there is a joie de [...]

Freedom to Coast

November 28th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , , , |

The Dunes Trail has made quite an impression since it was officially opened in mid-2012. It’s now journeyed by around 20,000 cyclists per year, plus many walkers and runners. Intrepid travellers, fitness enthusiasts, families, a Thursday-evening ‘bike, beer and BBQ’ group, youth groups, motorhomers, e-bikers, hand-bikers – they’re all out there enjoying it. Trail counters [...]

  • Cannibal Bay – a name that is sure to catch your attention

Mysterious Catlins

November 28th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , , , |

When I was a kid the Catlins always sounded an interesting place to visit – there was a slightly mysterious ring about the name. Our family had many camping holidays in remote areas around New Zealand, but for some reason my father wasn’t drawn to the Catlins, which is great because now I had the [...]

  • A spectacular glass ceiling shows the Coat of Arms of all British Dominions and Colonies during WWI

Auckland Museum 166 Years On

November 27th, 2018|Tags: , , , , |

It’s an overcast Sunday, the beginning of the school holidays, when we meet on the steps of Auckland War Memorial Museum, and any thoughts that the blustery weather might serve to deter the crowds are quickly diminished. There’s a real buzz around the building as tourists and families throng the forecourt. Waiting there on the [...]

  • Following the waterways was a magical time

A Great Ride – Wheeling Through The Wilderness

October 5th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , |

My wilderness trail experience started at the northern trailhead, with a brisk introduction to the local ‘barber’. He’s a particularly fearsome character and Greymouth residents tell me he cuts right to the bone! However, this is no barber with a pair of scissors in hand but is in fact a local wind; a unique phenomenon [...]

  • The basis of the museum project is the former Mayor’s residence and headquarters of the Gendarmerie in Le Quesnoy, the largest piece of land under one title within the original town ramparts. Studies by the New Zealand Memorial Museum Trust indicate that it is entirely suitable for the purpose of establishing a New Zealand presence in France, centred in Le Quesnoy

The Great War – Commemorating the Armistice

October 5th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , , |

It’s difficult for us today to absorb the extent of the misery and heartache that was being experienced throughout the length and breadth of New Zealand 100 years ago, as “the guns fell silent” in Europe’s Great War with the signing of the Armistice in the Forest of Compiègne in the Picardy region of France, [...]