New Zealand, South Island, the west coast...   2018

Photos by Barbara Dahn, unless otherwise acknowledged.

 

New Zealand has many 'thermal areas', although the best known are the larger thermal fields around Rotorua, which have supported significant tourism for over a century.  In fact the 'pink terraces' were world famous... unfortunately destroyed in a small eruption last century.

 

It's not unusual to see steam rising slowly from the side of a hill, or near a stream.

 

While overseas tourists are attracted to the larger, better-known sites, there are many smaller sites catering for locals.

 

 

At Tokaanu, there are small areas devoted to cooking pools.

 

 

Some of the pools are just as they were thousands of years ago.

 

 

 

 

Video: 30 seconds, SD:  Tokaanu pools

 

New Zealand, in some areas, particularly the South Island, provides a window back in time.  For example, old bridges...

 

 

 

 

And old houses...  at the peninsula near Dunedin...

 

 

North of Milford Sound

 

and at Cardrona....

 

 

And where else would you find a whole town celebrating "Gumboot Day"?

 

 

 

 

New Zealanders also like lining things up in rows....  like trucks...

 

 

and toilets...

 

and boathouses...

 

and trees....

 

and clouds...

 

and the Moeraki Boulders...

 

and....  but what are these?

 

 

Even sheep can be arranged in rows....

 

 

especially if you have a hard-working sheep dog (in the truck)....

 

 

 

While the locals like things in rows, some tourists like piles of stones...  which may be white...

 

 

or black...

 

 

Barbara and I patrolled some of the West Coast beaches looking for green stones.... you never know when a piece of jade might turn up.  On leaving one beach we noticed a stream with a hand-painted sign saying "EELS".  A beautifully laid-out stone-paved path lead to a spot on the stream, and, YES, there they were...   amazing....

 

 

 

Greymouth, situated at the mouth of the Grey River, is the largest town of the West Coast.  

This poster (above) must have been re-touched. When we were there the river and the ocean had a strongly grey appearance.

 

Most of the western coast of New Zealand is exposed to the prevailing southwesterly winds, and for the most part has a windswept, inhospitable feel. The beaches at Greymouth are no exception.

Some of the houses, too, looked rather inhospitable...

 

 

 

 

The tiny township of Okarito, right on the west coast, is home to a beautiful lagoon, a breeding area for 'white heron' or what we Australians would call 'egret'. And other birds...

 

 

 

 

 

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