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On Walkabout: North to Kaikoura, New Zealand

The drive north from Christchurch to Kaikoura on the first leg of our journey around New Zealand’s South Island was actually quite plain with nothing but rolling green fields of cows:

Picture from the Road to Kaikoura

Picture from the Road to Kaikoura

and even more sheep:

Picture from the Road to Kaikoura

The South Island was actually reminding me of Victoria back in Australia with its rolling green fields of agricultural land until the single lane highway we were following to Kaikoura headed directly for these large mountains covered in brilliant yellow flowers:

Picture from the Road to Kaikoura

I have no idea what these flowers were but as we drove through these mountains it was incredible how the mountains were absolutely covered with this flower:

Picture from the Road to Kaikoura

The main single lane highway between Christchurch and Kaikoura twists and turns through these quite scenic mountains:

Picture from the Road to Kaikoura

I don’t know for sure it appears these mountains have been heavily logged and turned into grazing land which has allowed this yellow flower to flourish:

Picture from the Road to Kaikoura

I think the yellow flower is actually a weed called a gorse which is a foreign species to New Zealand that is proving difficult to eradicate.  As we began to descend down the mountain range towards the sea shore the yellow flower was suddenly gone and replace with fantastic green scenery:

Picture from the Road to Kaikoura

There was still plenty of grazing land but this time instead of sheep and cows we saw lots of deer farms:

Picture from the Road to Kaikoura

The road quickly descended down the mountains and before we knew it we had reached the sea shore:

Picture from the Road to Kaikoura

The seashore did not have any real beaches and was really quite rocky in some places:

Picture from the Road to Kaikoura

These rocks were quite popular with the local birds though:

Picture from the Road to Kaikoura

Looking towards the south back towards the range of mountains I had crossed was really quite scenic with the rolling hills descending into the border ocean waves:

Picture from the Road to Kaikoura

As we continued driving down the coast we soon could see a peninsula of land sticking out towards the ocean in the distance:

Picture from the Road to Kaikoura

It is on this peninsula that our destination the city of Kaikoura awaited.

Next Posting: The Kaikoura Peninsula

Previous Posting: Exploring New Zealand’s South Island

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