2018 HAL World Cruise
Tuesday, February 6, 2018
We awoke this morning in Port Chalmers, New Zealand. This is on the east side of the South Island and about ¾ of the way to the tip of New Zealand. It was 50 degrees!!!!!
We were docked next to the Norwegian Jewel and we watched her passengers disembarking in parkas. Don’t know her itinerary but the passengers were equipped for Antarctica! We were not. So, after putting together several layers of clothing topped with a hooded windbreaker, we set off for our drive through Port Chalmers and ultimate destination of Dunedin.
Scottish settlers arrived in the area in 1848. They founded Dunedin in the spirit of Edinburgh. The city’s original surveyor, Charles Kettle, gave instructions for builders to reproduce characteristics of the much-admired New Town precinct of Edinburgh. The Scottish influence generated a reverence for fine churches and an unbridled passion for education. The University of Otago was the first in New Zealand.
Dunedin is often referred to as the eco-capital of New Zealand. The Otago Peninsula is home to a rare colony of yellow eyed penguins. It is also the only mainland breeding ground of the Royal Albatross. And its rugged coastline is frequented by rare New Zealand Hooker sea lions. We didn’t see any of them until sailing out of port! During dinner! No camera available! Maybe there will be a next time, sometime.
For now, we will spend a day cruising thru the fjords of Fiordland National Park (a UNESCO site at the southwest tip of South Island) and then another couple of sea days on our way to Sydney, Australia. More later!