Cindy's New Zealand South Island Adventure: Kaikoura and Christchurch

I flew Air New Zealand from Hong Kong to Christchurch via Auckland. It was my first long haul flight and I was travelling alone. I would hav...

I flew Air New Zealand from Hong Kong to Christchurch via Auckland. It was my first long haul flight and I was travelling alone. I would have prefer having Mac or even a close friend on my side with those 10 hrs. or so. Anyway, I've tried covering my fears and tried to act like I was a grown up (well, I am a grown up, I am a responsible adult) and I have succeeded. I would say, it's the most uncomfortable flight I ever had, especially that I cannot get a nice sleep even with the eye mask and socks, etc. I had a very bad cold as well...

When I arrived Christchurch, I met the rest of my colleagues, Selene and Rick from Shanghai and Andy who currently lives in Christchurch. So we did some shake hands and they asked me how my flight went and I answered them honestly that I felt horrible with those 10 long hours.

And so our journey begins...

the scenic drive on the way to Kaikoura
We start our scenic drive from Christchurch to Kaikoura. It was 2.5 hrs. if I'm not wrong and although I was enjoying the scenery, I cannot erase the fact that my eyes will close any minute so when we arrived at the Willowbank Motel, I have decided to shower and nap while they went to the town to buy dinner.

By the way, the motel wasn't that bad. It as two bedroom with Selene and I sharing the double bed and the other guys staying in a twin bed room. The whole apartment was cozy and comfortable enough.

Our double bed at Willowbank Motel
When I woke up 2 hrs. later, they finally arrived and we all ate fish and chips! I already felt good at that time. And it was indeed very chilly. Andy, our host in NZ, have informed us before hand that it is the autumn time and so we just have to bring our shirts and cap. In my mind, it's going to be sunny and all that, buy boy I was so wrong. Okay fine, I have checked the weather forecast, and I have to admit, I packed my stuff at the last minute and ends up bringing only 1 thick red jacket.

Anyway, we did have a long and interesting conversation that evening. It was my first familiarization trip and I knew that we still have a long way to go.

Day two

After eating our sandwiches, we drove to Hapuku Lodge which is 15 mins. away and met Princess, our colleague in Singapore. She was with the Tourism New Zealand and after spending a week with the team, she will now continue her journey with us.

Hapuku Lodge is one of my favorite hotel in Kaikoura (not that there are many) but the view is just wonderful!

Imagine waking up with this view!

They also have their own garden!
 So after some coffee time with the lodge's manager, we then drove for 10 mins. to the Ohau Seal colony where we had a 15 minutes walk. And guess what we saw?

We saw a lot of seals! It was really fantastic! :)

Next thing we did was catch a 20 minutes flight to do some whale watching. Although I would like to specifically mention here that we didn't see any whales while we're up there. But I saw a whale while we were driving! Yes, that's a fact, another colleague saw it too but we can't stop the car. The small plane ride made my stomach really upset that I have used up 4 paper bags for my puke. Although we didn't see any whales, the scenery was really beautiful!

And then we did have a wine tasting as well after the flight, that made me feel better that day. I never thought wine can make an upset stomach better... :)

In the afternoon, we did some hotel inspection and then drive to Christchurch and stayed at The George. Christchurch has been affected very much with the earthquake that happened not so long ago. Because of the earthquake, a lot of hotels had closed. The George is one of the hotels that survived. The hotel even gave us a teddy bear as a souvenir.

The George Hotel is a luxury and very much comfortable compare to the motel where we stayed the last night. Men, I can live in here forever. Even their bathroom floors are heated. 

That night too, Andy went home. And the four us were left at the hotel and ready to explore what to eat that night! It was just our second night, but I already experienced a lot! We had a nice dinner in Strawberry Fair where I had fish and potatoes. I think this restaurant is also famous for its deserts! Let me finish this post with the sumptuous dinner I had that evening.

I knew this post has been long overdue and my apologies my mates! New Zealand was definitely in my bucket list and this was indeed a dream come true for me! 

To be continued soon... 

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