Whakawhetai koe, thank you!

Good bye New Zealand. When we arrived here we did not really know what to expect. Of course we read guides, looked at the internet and planned our trip roughly. However, being honest, what do you really know about the other side of the world before you get there?Spatzl already felt relaxed as she found out that New Zealand is quite the opposite to Australia with no predators looking to kill you and scare the shit out of you behind every corner. New Zealand is gentle, but boiling under the surface and its disruptive energy can show itself quite dramatically as seen on the 22.02.2011 earthquake in Christchurch. We are just sitting here at the airport on our last inland flight to Auckland. You see the snowcapped mountains from the lounge as you sip your coffee. We have seen a lot and were really lucky with the weather despite our not perfect timing for a trip to Kiwi land. This lovely country is full of surprises. 4 million people, 40 million sheep, a melting pot of Maoris and “newbies” from the old world. You will meet a lot of campers from all over the world, notice the Asian invasion at the tourist attractions and backpackers for sure are en vogue here.

New Zealand is a microcosm in its own right with stunning nature. A treasure that hopefully will stay as untouched as it still is in manifold areas. You have the proof here how little things can change the established balance in nature. Opossums, as sweet as they are, they simply do not belong here as any Kiwi bird at the verge of extinction will agree.

We now understand better why the government is rightly so scared about anyone bringing alien plants, seeds or animals to this country. Down under has its own rules and for good reasons.

We found the longest place name in the world at Hawke’s Bays’s Taumatawhakatangihangakoauauotamateaturripukakapikimaungahoronukupokaiwhenuakitanatahu and the world’s steepest street in Dunedin. But more importantly we found our little treasures around one of the manifold corners, we met great people, had fantastic food and wine (not easy to please an Italian) and loved to be guests here. Now as winter arrives we do not mind moving on as it can be really cold. Memories will keep our hearts warm as we say thank you and good bye Kiwis!

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When we get to heaven, we´re going to look around and say:

“It´s nice but it ain´t New Zealand”.

 

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