Motueka – Visiting friends

To go from the North to the South Island, there are only two ways, fly with anairplane or comfortably take the ferry to the other side. We decided on the last one and made our way from our AirBnB to the portvery early. We bookedthe tickets online andso we could go to the ferry without much waiting. The almost 1 ½ hours drive on a quiet seais easy and you arrive in the port of Pictonvery fast.

„Faithless is he that says farewell
when the road darkens“
– Gimli –

We saddled our backpacks and decided on the northern route to Motueka. This road is close to the sea all the time and offers a beautiful view. Because of the freeway less cars take this road and it took us a long time to catch somecars.But these only took us some kilometers and this went on for a while and so we hauled down a quarter of a kilometer, kilometer by kilometer. We just thought our karma had left us whentwo cars stopped in front of us. Steffi and Chrissi smiled from the frontseats. The two German girls packed us in the car and we drove towards Motueka. They also wanted to spend on the Gold Coast a few days and kayaking around the area. We stopped at Nelson’s iSiteto plan the days ahead and book the water taxi and camping sites for our 3-days hike.

More about the Great Walk in the Abel Tasman National Park can be found here:

In the evening we found a small campsite by the sea and set up the camp. We prepared our dinner and started to talk about our travel experiences in New Zealandwith a bottle of wine. As our past weeks were so overwhelming for us, we skipped our stories of hitchhiking and encounters with the New Zealanders, and the two of them sat wide-eyed in front of us. That was exactly what they had hoped of New Zealand. Unfortunately travelling with one’s own car was a completely different matter, as they mainly met German teenagers aged 18-23 at the campsites. As we looked around, we could understand very well what the two meant. The camping site was full of vans German high school graduates who wanted to be as far away from mom and dad as possible before studying. Unfortunately like this you don´t get a feeling for the country and the people.

Fortunately the coming day changed the view of the two on their journey fundamentally. Steffi and Chrissi’s actual plan to deliver us to Naomi and Mathew – friends of Catherine and Peter from Hamilton – and to seek a parking space quickly fell when Naomi invited the two to spend the night with us in the house. In the evening we sat in a big round with parents and old school friend on the terrace together and celebrated a delicious barbecue. Even though we have had many extraordinary experiences and encounters in New Zealand, we have been overwhelmed time and again by the extent to which you can experience the New Zealand hospitality. And we were very happy to share this experience with Steffi and Chrissi.

Salute from here and now,
Tina and Andi from Itchy Feet

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