Monday, April 20, 2015

Banks Peninsula near Christchurch

oday I took a bus out to the Banks Peninsula which is located near Christchurch. The bus ride took a couple of hours plus but the driver was entertaining us as we rode along with him. He was telling us all about the earthquake and its effect on both the City of Christchurch and his life in particular. It was all interesting information. He also pointed out landmarks and wildlife as we went along. We stopped a few times to look at things along the way and to get a piss break in for those with weak bladders. My fav stop was a hotel built with steel grain silos.

Once we arrived in Akaroa which is the city at the end of the peninsula we all split up and did our own things for the day. Lots of the people took a boat cruise to see sea lions, penguins, albatross and the worlds smallest dolphins. They even help you jump in and swim with the little dolphins. The people that did the tour all said they enjoyed it. I did not spend the $200 it cost because I have already seen all those things in other places and I had no intention of swimming in this cold weather, dolphins or no dolphins. There were also fishing charters, sailing tours, jet boat rides, walking tours and four wheel drive tours in Akaroa.

Instead I struggled out to the lighthouse on foot to look at that and just to sit and look at the beautiful harbor. I hitched a ride back into the central part of town because I could not walk that far. There was a bar called HAR BAR where I sampled some, unknown to me, IPAs. They were good ones. Then it was on to blue cod and chips for lunch. Blue cod is a delicious tasting fish. I then met a girl that I seem to keep running into everywhere I go. We had to laugh about meeting each other again but we had a leisurely coffee together and an ice cream.

I took a few pics but my camera is nothing if not unreliable right now. Some of the pics turned out others just disappeared. I have to come up with a solution to this problem soon.

Tomorrow I am going to some hot springs up in the mountains for the day. Fairly high chances of heavy rain tomorrow according to the forecast so I figured a day soaking in the hot springs while it rained on me sounded good. Then Wednesday I am going to the West coast at Greymouth for a couple of days. I am doing the scenic train ride. It better be good for the price it cost. I hope the weather is clear when I ride the train so I can see the beautiful scenery along the way. I will return to Christchurch Friday for the weekend then head up to the Nelson area in Northern South Island.

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