Thursday, April 30, 2009

Marlborough - Nelson and Picton

The last few days I have spent traveling around the Marlborough Region of New Zealand, and more specifically Nelson and Picton.

Picton serves as a big transportation town in New Zealand. The Interislander Ferry brings thousands over from the North Island every day. Also, there are heaps of semi trucks that make the three hour journey across the Cook Strait. Also the Tranz Scenic railway takes people further south to Christchurch.

I woke up early on my day in Picton and did a walk through the hills. There was hardly anyone on the track, and it was very stunning. The walk is surrounded by hills and looks over the very attractive city.

After the walk, I went over to the cinema to see what was playing, Slumdog Millionaire started about 10 minutes after I arrived, so I bought a ticket. The theater was very funny, three rows, 20 seats, and a screen the size of most televisions in the United States. As a bonus I was the only person watching the flick.

Marlborough Wine Region
Between Picton and Nelson is the Marlborough Wine Region which has something like 96 wineries dotting the area. Some of my favorites like Montana and Cloudy Bay have wineries. The hills in the background only make it better!

Nelson was better than I expected. I have been transiting through the city the last couple of weeks and it seemed rather boring and sleepy. But, I was surprised to find out besides being and important port it also has an edgy side. I did a heap of walking around the city and found lots of interesting things. For example, a book store sells a title called "How to Smoke Pot" and there are lots of artsy types hanging about.

Another interesting side were all the churches. They were absolutely stunning. A few were converted into other services like a funeral home, but it was quite nice. Also nice was the walk up and down the Center of New Zealand. I was skeptical about the walk as well, but it was nice. the 360 degree views cannot be expressed in video or pictures. The sea was beautiful and there were heaps of colors.

Speaking of color, one of my favorite spots in Nelson were the Queen Gardens. They are handsome, interesting, and full of songbirds. There is a small waterway going through it, and it was perfect. I didn't get much video, but there are some pictures below.

I am currently in Auckland and my parents should be arriving in less than 24 hours, I hope they are excited about their first international trip!

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