Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Gisborne and Napier

Gisborne was just a stopping point on the journey from Tauranga to Napier. The weather cleared up as we were leaving, so we took some photos with the famous Cook statues on the waterfront and headed out.
This is Cook's crew boy who first spotted New Zealand land.
Gisborne waterfront on a nice day
Napier is known for being an art-deco city since it was rebuilt in the 1930s after an earthquake devastated it. It definitely felt like something out of The Great Gatsby with the fonts and styles. We first visited the National Aquarium which was small but allowed us to get our first real sighting of a kiwi!! They switch its day and night (since it's a noctural bird) so visitors can see it out and about. No flash allowed, so my best photo is more like a Loch Ness sighting! Everyone was crowding the glass trying to get a photo of it, so I decided to enjoy seeing it with my own eyes. I doubt anyone but professionals gets a good shot of them. But it was a very strange creature, like something out of the Alice in Wonderland movie, poking its long beak around in the dirt and sort of waddling around in a funny way. I can see why it has trouble surviving in a world of mammal predators.

We also saw the little blue penguins New Zealand is famous for. They were all rescues and very cute. The color is more of a greenish tint.

One thing Napier was definitely lacking was many places to eat for dinner. By the time we had left the aquarium in the late afternoon, there was nothing open downtown. We couldn't find anything good at Pak N Save, so we finally had to settle for Domino's pizza and eat it in a park.

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