Baby Penguins, Hot Springs and Seals

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These photos represent the last leg of our trip up the east coast of the South Island.  We spent time with Val and John on their farm for one night in Invercargill and then began the journey North.

Dunedin was a really interesting city, though we only passed through we did take some time to look at the Albatross breeding grounds and found some adorable little wild penguin chicks hiding in a burrow on the peninsula which was also covered in very lethargic seals.  The colour blue of these babies is stunning.  I love thier hairy, downy backs.

From Dunedin we visited a popular place called Moeraki Boulders, and attempted to get a reservation at the much hyped Fluers restaurant – however we should have called ahead.  The joint was packed, and so we ate at a local pub and settled in for one of our last nights  camping…in really mild weather.  Despite being right on the coast, the breeze was warm and very calm.  Next time we head South we’ll be sure to book in and try out Fluers though, the menu looked so good.

The boulders we saw the following morning, the small cormorant was being pestered by tourists, though I think it was a little baby.  He was literally being petted by children and did not seem to mind.  I loved the foreign almost alien like spheres that dotted the sand.  The lighting and ocean that morning were both quite beautiful.

From here we spent two more nights camping in a really cool spot called “Hanmer Springs”.  The springs were so nice.  Possibly the best we’ve been to, and were settled right in the midst of the woods.  I looooved floating in the water, and eventually Mike had to plead with me to get out.  It was such a great spot.  Mike declared it his favourite place and I think I’d agree for a long holiday it would be a peaceful place to unwind.

Our second night at Hanmer Springs however was slightly less relaxing as an INSANE wind storm rolled in and screamed through the trees around us.  While this normally wouldn’t have been much of an issue, we had placed our tent underneath a rather large and ageing tree that had already lost a few enormous branches.  We both discussed the possibility of a branch falling onto the tent and the thought kept us both up for the majority of the night.

Upon rising, there was a forest fire ablaze a few kilometres away and the only road out was blocked for roughly 6 hours due to the forest fire operation keeping it under control.  The whole town was in a frenzy, police, fire trucks… tourists were everywhere.

Lucky enough our ferry wasn’t headed to Wellington until the following day.  We shot off as soon as the road opened and headed to Picton for one last night of tenting.

The month went by really quickly, and you can see us enjoying one of the last nights in our tent with my robust belly safely keeping our little dude housed and warm.  He’s been kicking quite a bit, and is due to meet us in about 2.5 months.  It seems ages away but…then we’re like not prepared just yet!! haha.

Yesterday Mikes family was so helpful and basically moved us into our home.  We hardly did anything, it was such a nice surprise!  Tess even came around for a snuggle and was very excited.

We’re both not sure she’s clued into my belly yet…



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