In the morning we drive to Kaikoura which is about 10 km away. In fact we do not want to swim with dolphins or whales or in a boat, probably we had had to book a tour some days before, but we want to have a look at this place anyway. Until we find the way to the lookout point we pass through Kaikoura twice, then we find the signs to Kaikoura Peninsula.
The carpark is rather complete [it is 10 o'clock in the morning?!?] and we wonder about the little crowds standing at the roadside with their cameras pointing downwards. Ah, fur seals! They loll alongside the road, on the beach, on the rocks - well, it is their 'lounge'. We watch the goings-on for some minutes, then take a walk at the installed path. Of course we have some great views again :) On our way back I can't believe my eyes - THAT would not be possible in Germany: The path downwards is steep and there is no railing! You could fall down directly into the agaves! Unbelievable. [May it be that in NZ everyone is responsible for oneself and not everything is prescribed by the state? I have even heard rumours about bungeejumping without insurance protection. Ah no, that cannot be... ;) ] About two hours later we bid farewell to the fur seals and drive on towards north.
On our way we visit a "secret spot" - Ohau Stream, a stream where fur seal pups are said to have their playground. The secret spot is not as secret anymore, there are big signs, a car park and a
path to the cascade where the seal pups have their meeting point. We are lucky, in fact three little seals scrimmage in the water and play with each other. Cute! The little ones come out of the
ocean, swim along the stream to the pool and cut loose, at "supper time" they swim back to the sea, back to mummy :)
On we go along Canterbury Plains [does anybody know why they are called 'plains'? They're not plain at all...]. We have very strange light round here, almost green. We pass some fish&chips
bars, unfortunately we are not hungry yet... Actually we want to drive to Pelorus River but we assume that it is too stressful, we had to drive another 160 km/ 2 hours. Of course we could stay
the night there, but will we be in time for tomorrow's ferry? So we decide to take some fish&chips at Blenheim and go on unhurriedly to Picton. After having found the campsite, a freesiter in
an industrial zone, we go for a stroll into town and become a little melancholy as we have to leave South Island tomorrow. On the other hand we have North Island in front of us and are very
23.03.15/ kaikoura - picton
22.03.15/ Jacksons - Kaikoura
24.03.15/ Picton - Wellington