Sunday, April 4, 2010


Today was party cloudy to sunny with a high temperature of 12.5C (54.5F). It was a lovely day to explore Invercargill and area. Invercargill is a nice city which features many buildings built in the mid to late 1800s. That is when major settlement of the area happened. Prior to then, the main western settlers were just encampments of whalers and sealers.

We drove south to Bluff, which is the point to catch the ferry to Stewart Island. We did not go to the island, but drove around the town some and drove to their lookout point. This will be the southern most point of our trip. It is almost as far south as you can go on this side of the world. The only way to go further south on land is the tip of South America. Any way we were 46d 36min 54 sec south at this point today.

We explored a lot of the older building around town and have included a few pictures of them. Most striking were the old water tower, the Town Hall & Theater, and the Railroad Hotel.

We also went to the Sir Robert Anderson home which has been turned into an art Museum. They had some very striking paintings hanging in the various rooms, all by local New Zealand artists.

Also on the grounds was an authentic Maori house. It was very interesting and well preserved.

There is a bird Aviary in the part that has a lot of interesting birds, mostly varieties of parrot/parakeet. Beautiful birds.

One of the interesting events today was the automatic bathroom. They have a green light that flashes if unoccupied. Pressing a button opens the door and upon entering, it talks to you. Telling you the door is locked, how to retrieve toilet paper, and that the toilet will flush when you wash your hands. It also gives you a 10 minute time limit. What the voice didn't say but the instructions did, is that after 10 minutes, the door will automatically open....after a 1 minute warining. It was our first encounter with these.

Late this afternoon we found a Scenic Reserve (small park) and took a nice walk through the woods. It was a 2.2 kilometer track through typical bush area.

On the menu this evening was Blue Cod cooked in a white wine sauce served on mashed potatoes, and scollops. Reall tasty.

Tomorrow, we are traveling to Duneden area but will be driving via Catlins Coastal area. With any luck we will see penguins in the wild tomorrow.

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