Let’s take a walk through the vines.
It’s only early summer so the grapes are just starting to fruit. They won’t be ready until Easter time.
There aren’t many predators around so the rabbits still run free.
And Mother Duck can still rear her ducklings.
The hydrangeas are blooming nicely.
There might be a storm overnight, but in New Zealand the weather doesn’t usually hang around too long.
Time to head inside for the night.
Being recreational wine enthusiasts, our next destination was the wine mecca of Marlborough, a region located at the north-east end of the South Island.
We stayed in a delightful holiday cottage called Andahlane Cottage.
It’s set in the vineyards just out of the small town of Renwick.
Marlborough is a bit like the Hunter Valley on steroids. The vineyards cover an area 5 times the size of the Hunter Valley, hence there are dozens of cellar doors to potentially visit. The wines can also be over-the-top (I think almost everyone has tasted a fruit-bowl-like Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc sometime in their life) but we were interested in tasting the wines of the smaller, artisanal producers.
But that’s for another day.
After lunch, we drove around to Point Kean, to the south side of town. The weather was perfect for early December (i.e. Early summer).
Around the point, we passed a remnant of an old homestead. I’m guessing the sea level has risen quite a bit since it was first built.
And it we didn’t have to go far to see our first seal. These are all New Zealand fur seals, and can be found on rocky shores throughout mainland New Zealand, the Chatham Islands, and the sub-Antarctic islands, as well as parts of Australia.
These seals were pretty used to humans, and other animals too, it seems.
Kaikoura was a town that was clearly still recovering from its recent disaster. But Kiwis do have lots of experience with natural disasters, so they seem to just get on with it so that things can get back to ‘normal’.
This area has been cleaned up and demountables and other quick building solutions were brought in to act as shops.
We certainly found good fish and chips there for lunch.