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Anita and Bernie’s Travel Diary

Thursday, 10 Jan 2008

Location: Masterton, New Zealand

MapHi everyone from New Zealand. At last I am in Masterton with my sister. The journey to Auckland was uneventful with sunshine over blue seas. Auckland is definitely the city of sails. We saw some fantastic boats both in the marina and out on the water whilst we enjoyed a lovely dinner sitting on the quay. We went up Skytower - 189 metres in a glass bottomed lift. We could see the whole of Auckland and beyond but it was a little bit disconcerting with the glass sides and floor. We decided not to participate in the base jump from the top to the bottom!!
The hotel was the grottiest hotel we have ever stayed in. More like bed and breakfast for the homeless. The one redeeming feature was its location close to the centre of all the activities. We left very early in the morning to catch the train for our 12 hr journey to Wellington. We went through spectacular scenery (sometimes in the pouring rain). The gorges and viaducts were very deep, veriginous and awe inspiring. We saw amazing hills, valleys and raging torrents. It is a journey well worth considering if you are visiting New Zealand.
We had a very emotional reunion at the station with my sister who I have not seen for 7 years. After all the planning and waiting it was great to be together again. Her cottage is simply divine and bijou!! Painted blue and red on the outside reminds me of a seaside chalet. It is very compact inside but full of character and charm. Finally the weather has turned good and we have been experiencing the delights of Masterton and beyond. Masterton is a bustling small town in the Wairarapa valley a few miles from the wineries of Martinborough. We visited Greytown which is full of chic and expensive shops but full of charm with the oldest pub in NZ. Today, whilst Yvonne and I hit the shops, Bernie spent all his time in the local museum and art gallery called Aratoi (after 2 hrs he did not manage to see it all - typical!!) Tommorrow we are visiting the wineries of Martinborough for my birthday treat followed by dinner in a Turkish restaurant.
Hopefully there are new pictures for you to see under Round the world 1. Enjoy!
All our love