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C2C’s Travel Diary

Friday, 28 Nov 2008

Location: Dunedin, New Zealand

MapWe’d decided to go there to see the Royal Albatross colony – the only one in the world on a mainland site. Approached via a precarious clifftop road, aptly named Highcliff road, we travelled along the Otago peninsula and, when we could bear to look down, thought Dunedin looks an interesting and attractive place.

Learned a lot about the albatross, and the Royal Southern in particular, and saw 3 nesting. Awesome. Of particular interest to us was the fact that after 6 or 7 years of flying around South America, they return to have a ‘teenage year’ where they hang out with friends, flirt and eventually find a mate (it appears to take longer for albatross than for humans!) They then take a ‘year out’ before setting down. Hmmm.

In order to kill an hour before our obligatory guided tour, after the necessary coffee of course, we sauntered along the beach and came across a snoring log which turned out to be one of two resident sea lions of which we had been warned to be careful! Apparently the bull had already gone to sea and the cow was ‘not to be disturbed’.

Then did the 400km drive to Christchurch, where we are now resting and hopefully internet connecting! En route passed the 45th parallel. Apparently only 3 wine producing areas sit on this – Central Otago, Burgundy and – yes – Oregon! And all produce especially good Pinot Noir grapes (we can testify to the first 2 but not yet the third although we now have contacts in the area).