New Zealand Wrap Up: North Island

New Zealand is a relatively short flight across the Tasman Sea from Australia; it is also a former British colony.  These two countries are pretty isolated from the rest of the world.  Unsurprisingly, they are very similar in many ways.

Both countries speak English exclusively, complete with similar accents.  New Zealand TV is mostly Australian TV Channels.  Cars drive on the “wrong” side of the road in both countries.  The people are all very friendly and approachable.  Cuisines largely seemed similar.  New Zealand has even been proposed to be added as the 7th Australian state several times.

Still, the countries are different in many ways.  Australia is mostly desert – or “outback” – and much larger.  New Zealand seemed very green top to bottom, with lots of scenic mountains and lakes.  Look up a list of the deadliest/most venomous creatures, and Australia will be home to most of them.  New Zealand on the other hand has produced defenseless, flightless birds.  Australia’s population (22.3 Mil.) is a little more than 5 times New Zealand’s (4.4 Mil.); in fact, Sydney alone has a larger population than all of New Zealand.


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Hawke’s Bay

Yesterday, we drove from Rotorua to Hawke’s Bay.  I’m not sure if we mentioned this before, but we are basically driving through the whole country of New Zealand.  We started in Auckland then drove to Rotorua and now we are in Hawke’s Bay.  It is easier to understand when you look at a map of New Zealand.  We are starting in the North Island and going all the way to Queenstown, which is part of the South Island.  We get from 1 island to the next by taking the ferry.



So that is our overall plan.

Hawke’s Bay is another wine growing region of New Zealand.  Here, we are staying in a vineyard cottage.  It is literally a little house overlooking the Tuki vineyard.  I love it here!!  We drove up a little gravel pathway flanked by lime trees on one side and grape vines on the other.  When we got to the cottage, we were greeted by the hens.  Obviously, they are very comfortable with visitors because they ran right up to us.  Actually, I think that they just wanted to be fed!


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