Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Queen's Birthday Weekend

Cape Palliser Lighthouse
Over Queen's Birthday weekend (first weekend in June, but that's not actually her birthday...whatever...) we decided to venture to a place we hadn't been before in New Zealand - Martinborough and the Wairarapa.  Way down towards the far south of the North Island.

In order to NOT spend the whole weekend driving we flew to Wellington on Friday after work and had a wonderful dinner with some Auckland friends that just so happened to be in Welly as well. Then on Saturday we got a car and went an hour northeast.

On the way to Martinborough we stopped for a while in Greytown, a charming village with the most interesting chocolate shop - Schoc Chocolate.  They make it all there of course but have the most interesting flavour combinations.  Sesame.  Caraway and almond. Carrot and corriander.  Lime and chili. Sounds odd, but it's amazingly good! We bought, um, lots.

Martinborough is a main wine growing region - especially known for Pinot Noir - so yeah we may have visited a winery or six while we there on Saturday and Sunday.  Really interesting, usually small wineries with really good wine.  Be bought, um, lots.

The last day, Monday, we drove out to the rugged Wairarapa coast which was quite striking, chock full of seals, waves, rocky coastline, and even a lighthouse at Cape Palliser.  Just lovely.  Then it was back to Wellington for our flight back to our silly cat Remy.

It was great to see yet another part of this beautiful country.  Plus really just an excuse to get away.  Again.

More photos are here.