• Motupipi Hill in Takaka, where conservation coexists with recreation on a series of unique cycle trails (Alistair Hughes)

The Motupipi Hill Cycle Trail

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

Golden Bay, in the Nelson Tasman region, is a remarkably beautiful part of New Zealand. The area has long offered rich opportunities for tramping, rock climbing, sailing, kayaking, caving – a vast range of outdoor activities to be enjoyed within a stunning natural setting. All were catered for bar one notable exception, one that has [...]

Stunning Mountain Vistas on the Ride to Welcome Rock.

November 8th, 2019|Tags: , , , , , , , |

I was welcomed to Welcome Rock long before the trail of the same name appeared on the high-country hills behind Garston. It just so happened several years ago that our neighbour was the sister of the station owner, and she invited me to their farm after I returned from overseas cycling adventures. I soon learnt [...]

  • Household items still intact from decades ago

Man & Museum

November 8th, 2019|Tags: , , , , , |

Collecting is a childhood hobby for some, but for others it’s a pursuit that develops later in life. Richard Spark, now 75 years old, started his collection in 1982 and since then has acquired an enormous variety of items detailing New Zealand’s social history from the turn of the 20th century. Kathy Catton spoke with [...]

  • The water wheel generates electricity for most of the Smiths’ needs

In Miners’ Footsteps

November 8th, 2019|Tags: , , , , , |

“These are our newest babies,” Robyn Smith gestures to two little goats and a Highland cow with her calf at foot. “We’re feeding her stock-food pellets to try and get her used to us,” she explained, unfortunately thwarted in this plan by the sudden arrival of a Belted Galloway heifer who knows only too well [...]

  • Up in the hills

Beneath the Big Sky

November 7th, 2019|Tags: , , , , , |

It takes less than four hours to drive from Geraldine to Alexandra on the conventional route. But having had two thoroughly enjoyable four-wheel-drive tours with Robbie and Connie Crickett of NZ Adventures Ltd last year, we booked early for the 2019 Big Sky trip, a mostly mountainous excursion through Otago, Canterbury and a little bit [...]

  • Jackson Bay wharf

Jackson Bay – End of the Road!

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

Tourists seem to fall broadly into three categories. Firstly there are domestic tourists, many of whom are of the older generation leisurely travelling the country in their own car or motorhome – although if you read on, you’ll notice that there is a sub-category to this genre called ‘men who don’t listen to their wives’. [...]

  • The Arts Centre still takes centre stage towards the west of the CBD

Christchurch: A City Embracing Change

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

Ōtautahi Christchurch has had a bad run of luck these last 10 years – earthquakes, fires in the Port Hills and terror attacks. Christchurch has seen it all, and yet it has always risen to the challenge of rebuilding itself, physically and emotionally, from the inside out. As our Prime Minister so eloquently summarised, it’s [...]

  • It’s only in reasonably recent years that Glenorchy has been accessible by road. Prior to that the Earnslaw – run by New Zealand Railways – was the only means of transport in and out

The Great South Island Road Trip

September 9th, 2019|Tags: , , |

A couple of years back a survey of international travellers asked what destination they would like to see before they died. Pretty grim way of putting the question, but the results were interesting. In order of preference they were, the Grand Canyon, Queensland’s Coral Reef and the South Island of New Zealand. That puts us [...]

  • Welcome to Cheviot

Checking out Cheviot

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

Extensive road works north and south of Kaikōura meant that it took more than an hour longer than we’d expected to travel to Cheviot from Picton but seeing the extent of the earthquake devastation and the amount of reinstatement work required was a real eye-opener, making the delay worthwhile. At Ohau Point, hundreds of seals [...]

  • The Maruia River Sluice Box is a narrow canyon of outstanding beauty

Stand astride the Plates

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

If you happen to be in the Greenwich Royal Observatory in London, it’s possible to stand with one foot in the eastern hemisphere and the other in the western hemisphere. In the Indonesian city of Pontianak, you can stand with one foot in the southern hemisphere, and the other in the northern hemisphere. But at [...]