NZ/Australia – Goodbye New Zealand and Hello Melbourne!

– APRIL 01-03, 2015

On March 31st we bid farewell to John and Peter Hughes, as we drove the 3 hours from Morven to Christchurch so we wouldn’t need to rush on April 1st (our day to fly out).  That makes April 1st was our final day in New Zealand.

One more thank you to our wonderful hosts: John Hughes, Peter Hughes and Lyn Hamilton.  You were all excellent ambassadors for your country and we hope to see each other again in the future.

John and Peter Hughes

John and Peter Hughes on our last day in New Zealand

We dropped off the rental car in Christchurch, then flew from Christchurch to Auckland on the connecting leg of our flight to Melbourne.  On the flight to Auckland we could see New Plymouth mountain from the window seat, so we took the cool pic below.

New Plymouth Mountain from above the clouds

New Plymouth Mountain from above the clouds

Once we got to Auckland we had to collect our bags and check-in for the international leg of our flight to Melbourne.  Our next flight was with Emirates airline on a A380 Airbus…this thing is huge!

Emirates-A380 Airbus

Emirates-A380 Airbus

Economy class on this plane was spacious and comfortable.  The meal was better than you would expect from an airline and the selection of entertainment was very current.  It was a good flying experience and we will try to use them going forward, if possible.

We arrived in Melbourne, collected our bags, then went through customs/security with no issues.  It was simple and straightforward, refreshing since we had huge bags and a tent (which was completely cleaned prior to leaving New Zealand).  We took a cab to a room rental in the Ascot Vale district (found on AirBnB website…check it out for value accommodations).  It was late, so we visited with the homeowners (we are staying in their home with them) and called it a night.

Melbourne is a beautiful city, but it has schizophrenic weather for sure!  You can have all four seasons in one day here….it can be 30+ degrees hot, then rain/cold, then freezing, then snow all in one day at random!  It was 28 degrees the night we flew in, but 6 degrees the next day with a biting wind.  It makes travelling tough for locals since they never know what weather to expect.

The next day we walked around the Ascot Vale district.  Its an older district with some excellent brick buildings and homes.  There are Victorian style homes in the area that are neat to walk by.  Below is a church that caught my eye.  It wasn’t open, but I appreciate the brick work.

Ascot Vale church

Ascot Vale church

I went to a local mall to get some supplies for Australia.  A fuel cell for our campsite cooker and some top rated bug spray for the sand flies to come at the Twelve Apostles hike.  There was a small collectibles store that had a life size statue of a Terminator….so of course it was selfie-time!

"Come with me if you want to live"

“Come with me if you want to live”

Today is Easter Good Friday in Australia, so everything is closed.  Even the pubs closed at midnight to honor the holiday weekend.  The home owners also left for the weekend, so Jill and I have the house to ourselves on a day where nothing is open.  Time to catch up on the blog, organize our next set of accommodations, and to say to everyone…

Happy Easter weekend!

Happy Easter weekend!

 

Happy Easter weekend!

Happy Easter weekend!

Have a great Easter weekend everyone.  Take some time to appreciate the good things in life.

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For more photos of our adventure go to our flickr account here.

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