• A peaceful morning at Halfmoon Bay, Stewart Island. Photo: Stewart Island Tourism

Land of Glowing Skies

July 5th, 2020|Tags: , , , |

Crossing Foveaux Strait for the first time can be intimidating. The stretch of water between Bluff (at the bottom of the South Island) and Stewart Island/Rakiura has a reputation of providing one of the wildest ferry rides in New Zealand. As the ocean depth is shallow – only 30-metres – it chops up quickly with [...]

  • The view of Queenstown, from the top of The Remarkables

Ticket to Ride

July 5th, 2020|Tags: , , , , |

I peer out the plane’s oval window, across snow-covered mountains to the shimmering Tasman Sea in the west and down into remote valleys looking for good lines to ski. We fly over Lake Wakatipu and circle around the craggy cliffs of The Remarkables – far below houses line the lake shore. As we lose altitude [...]

  • Either walk or take the Skyline Gondola for a spectacular view of Queenstown

Queenstown, A Winter Playground

July 5th, 2020|Tags: , , , |

The brown Otago landscape is a welcome sight after the drenched green fields of Taranaki. The deep blue water of Lake Wakatipu is surrounded by mountains sweeping skyward, their rugged peaks draped with snow. The mountain air is brisk – my senses seem to sharpen with its chill. Downtown-Queenstown visitors are busy with their cameras [...]

  • Te Rewa Rewa bridge opens towards the sacred Taranaki Maunga

Cycle + Walk Trails New Plymouth Taranaki – a Coastal Embrace

March 7th, 2020|Tags: , , , , |

The crackling sounds of breaking waves pierce the crisp winter morning air as I amble down to the start of the New Plymouth Coastal Walkway near the Lee Breakwater. The clear blue sea stretches out to the horizon where it meets the soft powder-blue sky. The Power Station chimney towers over a container ship berthed [...]

  • The Hangatahua Stony River rushes by the Blue Rātā Reserve

Hangatahua Taranaki Travel – Sacred River

November 9th, 2019|Tags: , , , , , |

The Hangatahua (Stony) River has always been a special river to the people of Taranaki. The river is referred to in Māori mythology with the arrival of Mt Taranaki and is commonly regarded as the most sacred river in Taranaki. I remember summers in the seventies and eighties, returning from surf trips and stopping at [...]

  • Over 100,000 people visit the Festival of Lights each year

A Walk in the Park

September 10th, 2019|Tags: , , , , , , |

I love sitting under the stars, watching the moon rise over the tall trees on the skyline while listening to live music at the Bowl of Brooklands. Carlos Santana’s electric guitar charging through the crowd – all on their feet dancing – was a night to remember. The only interruption being the quacking of ducks [...]

  • The rusted steel frame of the SS Gairloch

The Sea Question

June 30th, 2019|Tags: , , , , , , , |

There is something about a walk on the beach that soothes the soul. I find if my mind is busy and I need to clear my head, a walk along Oakura Beach seems to work wonders. By the time I’m a short distance down the beach, the expanse of ocean stretching to the horizon with [...]

  • Geometrical design is a feature at Gravetye

Springtime in the Garden

June 30th, 2019|Tags: , , , , , |

After the cold and grey months of winter there is nothing like a little spring sunshine to entice us into the great outdoors. Plants start appearing in my garden that I had forgotten about – it’s like someone cast a wand around the garden conjuring up green foliage and flower buds. As a garden photographer [...]

  • Enjoying the parade in style

Steamy Punk

March 7th, 2019|Tags: , , , , |

It was a bit like one of those weird dreams when you wake up relieved and think ‘thank goodness it was a dream’ – except I was awake. An old steam train was rattling down the main street of Thames followed by a ute painted in camouflage with a couple of sinister-looking militia types on [...]

  • Clare embraces the morning at Lake Rotorua

In Hot Water

December 12th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , |

When I dived into the lake I passed through a patch of hot water. “Ouch.” Seconds later the water cooled, and my head was relieved to feel the cooling sensation it craved after a hot 16-kilometre walk around the shore of Lake Tarawera. Hot Water Beach, true to its name, producing scalding hot water in [...]

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