At this point, we were all starting to feel our departure from New Zealand closing in on us. We didn’t have anymore fixed plans besides getting to Christchurch where we had to return the motorhome on January 15th. This gave us a little less than a week left.
Originally we had wanted to follow the South coast of the island, but instead we decided to go across to Dunedin with a stop at Nugget Point on the way. That way we would have a bit more time and flexibility for the things we wanted to do and see in our last week.
At Nugget Point, there’s just a short walk to the lighthouse, where you get a good view of the surroundings and the scattered cliffs in the sea. It’s quite beautiful, and the wind was so strong that the sight of the water crashing against the rock walls was really impressive.
In the afternoon we arrived at our camp site in Dunedin – it was still extremely windy, so we hung out in the motorhome, had dinner, and then went for a walk at the gorgeous beach just by the camp site. We almost blew away, but we had a magnificent sunset.
The following day we had an awesome brunch at The Kitchen Table Café. We found it by chance, and it was such a cool place with great breakfast!
Then we did a little shopping. Dunedin was the first real town we had been to for a while, that wasn’t limited to outdoor sports gear and fishing rods, so we did a bit of looking around.
Same afternoon we were lucky enough to get in on one of Elm Wildlife’s tours, and we spent the afternoon and evening in the knowledgeable company of their two wildlife experts Claudia and Tony. It was really great – we were taken to the wildlife reserve at Otago Peninsula in a small group by bus, and then we walked to the different locations from there.
We saw yellow-eyed penguin, little blue penguin, sea lions, fur seals, albatross, and quitea few other animals. And all the time we were given access to a very broad knowledge and passion for the New Zealand wildlife. It was hard to get good photographs without a serious zoom, but I made an attempt. I’m especially happy with my close-up of the little blue penguin.
New Zealand fur seal
Little blue penguin
We were returned to our motorhome around 9 p.m. and headed out of town to find a free camp for the night.