Monday, 30 April 2018


Not far from Ranfurly is the small township of Naseby. Situated 2000 ft above sea level, it has a population of around 100 and has previously been known as Parkers, Hogburn and Mt Ida. There are two hotels in Nasebythe Royal Hotel is one of them.

There are a lot of older buildings in Naseby, many of them preserved as part of Naseby's history, rather than housing working businesses.


In the watchmaker's window. 

The second hotel: the Ancient Briton 

 The hotel's outdoor seating area.

There are a number of picturesque dwellings throughout Naseby. This was just one of them. 

Naseby offers visitors forest walks and bike trails, an indoor curling ice rink and a swimming dam. These beautiful trees were up near the dam, which doubles as the fire brigade's water supply. Naseby is situated in the midst of a forest, so in the summer, fires are a real risk to the township. 

It seems wallabies are also a concern in these parts. We saw a couple of these signs today. 

Nestled down among the trees is the Larchview Holiday Park. There were lots of caravans in this spot, but no people. Perhaps these were stored as there didn't seem to be any tow vehicles around.

There were a variety of introduced trees around a park/sports field. They were clearly named, which was very helpful.

These Wellingtonia specimens were most spectacularhuge trees with massive trunks and their branches were a sight to behold as well. It almost looked as if they didn't really belong.

As with many Central Otago towns, Naseby was originally a gold mining settlementgold was discovered here in 1863. This display is a testimony to those origins.  

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Sunday, 29 April 2018

North of Queenstown

Travelling up the eastern side of Lake Wakatipu, we spotted the Earnslaw (above) on it's way back to Queenstown from Walter Peak High Country Farm. The TSS Earnslaw is a 1912 Edwardian vintage twin-screwed steamer and makes this trip several times a day, carrying tourists back and forth. The Earnslaw has been a Queenstown icon for as long as I can remember.

Further along, we stopped at Wilson Bay. It was a rather damp day with plenty of low cloud hanging over the mountains.

On the eastern side of the road, more snow-capped hills and mountains.

Pigeon Island is the largest island in Lake Wakatipu. It's in the northern part of the lake.

This is as far north as we are going today. Further on are the Routeburn Track (one of NZ's great walks), Paradise, and Diamond Lake.

More photos on the way back to Queenstown.

This is looking out over Bob's Cove. There is a 20-minute walk around the edge of the cove to a pier. There are other options and longer walks, but given the weather, we chose the shorter walk. I always enjoy the bush with so many different varieties of trees and plenty of bird life. Amongst those birds we heard/saw here today were a keruru (wood pigeon), fantails, bellbirds and tuis.

This is an old limestone mortar kiln, a reminder of the cove's once flourishing lime industry. A sign near the site tells us that although lime mortar is now seldom used, it still holds together some of the district's oldest buildings such as Queenstown's original council, court and library buildings. It was also used for street curbing, lintels and doorsteps.

Half way down the side of the kiln is an opening. Lucy went in the front opening at the bottom, and when she saw me half way up, decided she would come join me. But no, it was too high for her!

The top of the kiln.

The pier goes out to the deeper water, passing over the pale yellow grey limestone outcrops.


There are these small signs along the way identifying some of the trees, which are great. But not nearly enough to educate me and often it's unclear which tree they are referring to. Possibly just a testimony to the huge gap in my knowledge of NZ native trees as they do have a diagram as well.

Pretty fungi.

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Saturday, 28 April 2018

Arrowtown in Autumn

On Anzac Day we took a trip into Arrowtown. The colours of the autumn trees lived up to their reputation. It was hard to stop snapping them! As we drove in, the hillside to the right was a riot of colourreds, yellows and greens.

Then along the roadside, green delicious apple coloured trees with the leaves set off to perfection by the stark black branches.

More beautiful autumn trees. Notice those hills at the far right (and also in the background of a few of the following photos)hills smothered in autumn colours.

Historic Arrowtown's charm is not only in its magnificent displays of nature at her best. The main street of the township is a mixture of interesting shops, cafes, etc., most of them in beautifully restored historic buildings.

A modern day pharmacy housed in a building first built over 150 years ago.

It's a one-way street, which is just as well with so many people spilling off the footpaths with their cameras pointed in all directions, often oblivious to any road traffic.

On one side of this street was a park . . . 

. . . and on the other, a row of beautifully restored, repurposed old settlers' homes.

 Heading back into the main section of town . . . 

All along the street are these beautiful little alleys, just begging you to come explore. There are several art shops, cafes and restaurants down these walkways behind the front row of shops. Notice the lovely brick and stone paved footpaths.

Walking further west, we came to the Chinese Villagea memorial to the Chinese gold miners. From the late 1860s to the 1880s, approximately 8000 Chinese came to the Otago-Southland and West Coast goldfields. This was one of the many camps and settlements established by them.

Ah Lum's Store

Love the door handle on this door!

This bridge across the stream towards the Arrow River was just a couple of planks and tree stumps. Lucy was not all that keen on it and ended up using just the left side plank, going the rest of the way through the water. Hence her rather skinny looking wet legs! On the way back, she did just the samejumped into the water at mid point rather than trust that dodgy looking plank on the right!

The Arrow River

In case you cannot read the sign in the photo below, it says:

In August 1862, Jack Tewa, known as Maori Jack, found gold near this spot. Tewa was employed as a shearer by William Rees, runholder and the founder of Queenstown. 
Tewa was not particularly interested in gold mining but word of his find got out to those that were.
This led to the Great Wakatipu Gold Rush that drew miners from around the world and laid the foundations for the town of Arrowtown.

Couldn't resist taking a photo of this 21st century Chinese lady among the flowers.

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