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Adventures down under
15th Feb 2017
A Little Cruise

Today we booked a scenic cruise to see the Abel Tasman National Park. We chose a full cruise as neither of us felt up to walking a couple of hours or more and this left from Kaiteriteri. The weather was good, with plenty of sunshine and very little wind, so quite smooth sailing. The park is the smallest in New Zealand at 225 square kilometre, although it appears immense when sailing its coast. The boat passes many golden beaches with hardly anyone on them, and you can spot walkers hiking up and down the trails. We took a look at Split Apple Rock (a winery is named after it), and our guide told us we were lucky to see the split as it closes up at night!  Fur seals were next to be seen, lazing on rocks at Adele island (were they "rolling in the deep"?). Anchorage is a sheltered and safe Bay, with a few boats moored in it. Apparently there were 90 boats moored there on New Years Eve.  Further up is Sandfly Bay and Mosquito Bay, but they don't have an insect problem. In between these bays is Bark Bay, and the boat stopped to fill up with fresh water that is pumped from a clear mountain stream. Several passengers filled their water bottles from this - it is perfectly clear and pure. On the way to Tonga Quarry, we saw a set of arches carved into the stone by wave action. The largest can easily be walked through at low tide, and weddings are often held there (so the marriage is on the rocks before it's even started!). Tonga Quarry produced granite for a short period, some of it was used in Nelson for the steps at the head of Trafalgar Street. Wharf rock is so named due to its use to moor boats to take sheep from the coastal farmers. Cottage Loaf Rock is named for its shape and was once used for target practice by the New Zealand navy; they took three shots at it and missed every one!  The most northerly point of the cruise was Totaranui, where we got twenty minutes ashore to stretch our legs whilst the captain and guide had their lunch. The return journey was held up at one stop whilst we waited for a kayaker who was late and took some time retrieving their backpack from the kayak as well as taking off the life vest. Seeing many dead trees, we were told that these are pine trees that are deliberately poisoned so that native trees can re-establish. Back at Kaiteriteri for a spot of lunch, taken leisurely, before driving back to base. 



Next: A visit to friends
Previous: Down time in Bronte


Diary Photos

Baby seal

Kaiteriteri

Scenic cruise

Split apple rock

Arch point

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