Sun Mar 1 2009: Last day in New Zealand
We've poured the contents of the sidecases and topboxes on our bikes into the suitcases we've kept at Eliza's Manor. Fridge magnets, postcards, bits and pieces of jade jewelry and the odd t-shirts are about the only things that we can collect on the road without overloading the luggage, so the packing is relatively easy.
Our hosts at Eliza's Manor bidding us goodbye! They were so friendly!
I type out my last thoughts of our travelog as Neda prepares for a walk through downtown Christchurch in the brilliant sunshine. Yes, you heard right. Our final day here and it decides to beat down hot summer weather, to tune of 27C! ARGHHHH! How frustrating. Anyway, here are some pictures of Christchurch in proper New Zealand summer weather.
Popular street-car tour that runs around Christchurch
Despite the constant rain, it's been a very enjoyable vacation, but not quite the adventure we were hoping it would be. The south island of New Zealand is such a small place with limited options for road travel that there are only really two ways to move around the island - clockwise or counter-clockwise. You end up seeing the same travelers at each tourist trap, making you feel like you're moving in an assembly line inside a tourism factory. It's then that you start to realize that every traveler is having the same experiences that you have, with very little variation.
The point was hit home when I bumped into a couple outside Eliza's Manor. They had rented a BMW R1150 and were just about to start their two-week motorcycle vacation around the south island. I looked at their itinerary and it was exactly the same as ours!
The caption on the globe reads, "Ere we forget, all is owed to the Earth". A reminder as to how environmentally-friendly New Zealand is.
New Zealand does offer some amazing biodiversity in such a compact area. In a matter of days (sometimes hours) you can see beaches, fiords, glaciers, rainforests and all sorts of rare and endangered species, but the culture here is very westernized which surprised us. After spending 18 hours in a plane you would like to meet different kinds of people and taste different sorts of food. In the end, the roads do not disappoint and it was such a great motorcycle trip for us.
But don't let anyone tell you different though - it rains ALL THE TIME IN NEW ZEALAND!!!! :)
The cab ride on the way to the airport. ARE YOU $#@%*ING KIDDING ME?!?!!
Thanks for experiencing the trip with us, we hope you can join us again for our future travels on two wheels!