24.01.2014 - 24.01.2014
Moving on from Tongariro was tough as we missed out on an experience but the show must go on and we headed on to the capital Wellington, to see what it had in store for us.
The journey is one of the longest you do on the bus trip and there isn't much in between apart from farmlands.
To break up the trip and boost morale Possum made a couple of stops on the way. The first involved stopping in a small town which is famous for making gum boots so of course a Wellington boot toss competition (or Welly Wangin' as we were informed by Lauren), with alcohol rewards on offer, was called for!
Safe to say I was terrible at it and Sarah wasn't awful but not that great either, and it was left to the big German Stefan to take the winnings which wasn't bad because it was his last night in NZ (we let him win, honest!)
This is a 'shamel' a cross between a sheep and a camel.... Although I think Possum was pulling our leg here and its a llama or alpaca or something
The second was a small town that has a playground with climbing frames, hamster wheels, swings and see-saw. It was a good way to break up the monotony of the bus trip and we released the inner child on the swings.
When we finally reached Wellington the sun was shining and the advice by our driver was to check out the national museum called Te Papa. We had planned to visit Weta Cave, which is a studio where they produce props and special effects for films including Lord of the Rings but we hadn't realised it was a half hour bus ride to get there and was only open for another hour and we had no extra time! This recurring theme was beginning to drain us a little bit!
Fortunately, Wellington is a pleasant place to hang out especially when the weather is good.
Being a harbour city you get that good mix of city and nature. We even spied a cat fish!
The bar scene is supposed to be very good and we thought we should at least enjoy a glass. But before that we headed to the museum. There are five levels in the museum that cover all things New Zealand. We headed for the first floor that covered the geology and the natural history. This is where you can experience what it would be like to be in a house when an earthquake is causing it to move and shake. (It wasn't that amazing but I suppose it is hard to replicate the real thing). Wellington is one of a a number of places in New Zealand that are prone to earthquakes. Due to its location sitting in between the tectonic plates that move and shift and can cause serious damage to cities. In fact there was one that was over 6 on the Richter scale a few days before we arrived! It was interesting to read about the disasters that have occurred especially the most recent that was in Christchurch, a destination we would be visiting at the end of our trip. It was also interesting how the earthquake activity had caused other parts of New Zealand's landscape attractions to react. Two of which being White Island, and the Tongario Volcanic plateau....I guess we should be thankful that there was no activity when we were there.
Feeling a bit unenthused about reading more and wanting to be outside in the sun we didn't venture further into the museum. Instead we headed to one of the bars and enjoyed the sun and a bit of D and M.
The plan for the evening would be to get free dinner at a Nomads bar and stay there to get the drinks in and say farewell to Nora and Stefan who were heading home to Germany.
The night was pretty epic considering we hadn't really done many drinking nights with the bus.
Lauren taught us the snake high five where you shout the Zulu word for snake! The bar put on drinking games involving pegs on faces, gum though trousers.
The party atmosphere was infectious and we all got on to the tables and chairs to dance our arses off!
The boat ride to South Island could be a little tricky after this one!
Stay tuned for more tales