Cheese, penguins and spherical rocks

Trip Start Aug 24, 2008
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Trip End Jul 07, 2009


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Flag of New Zealand  , South Island,
Tuesday, May 26, 2009

On arrival in Oamaru we checked into a nice hostel in an old town house. We then headed straight for the cliffs to watch the blue penguins come in. The waves were at least 4m high, but the penguins didn't seem to care. They still waddles home, back to their burrows, avoiding the resident rabbit and a feral cat. After this we made prawn curry and went to bed.

We awoke to bright sunlight streaming through the window. After breakfast we walked through the historic part of town with its pretty architecture, all in white stone. We walked down to the cheese factory and had a look at the cheeses maturing and the workers pouring cheeses into moulds. There was a cheesy smell in the air and a layer of cheesy water on the floor. After watching the production process we went to the cafe for some cheese tasting. They were all delicious, especially the Windsor Blue. We liked it so much that we bought some. We also tried the delicious berry cheesecake. Feeling full of cheesecake, we headed to Moeraki. The drive took us along the coast with gorgeous views of hills dotted with sheep, steep cliffs and the sea raging below. On arrival in Moeraki we headed straight for the famous boulders. They are a collection of perfectly spherical rocks in the sand on the shore. We spent about an hour clambering over them and leaping off them to get photos. A few of them were broken, so you could see lots of crystals inside them. From here we headed to Shag Point (a shag is a bird) to see the shags and the seals lazing on the rocks below. They looked like furry logs, apart from the odd waving of a flipper. We sat in a little cove and ate our sandwiches. The cove is home to the rare yellow-eyed penguin, but they don't usually appear until late afternoon, so we didn't expect to see any. But within a minute of sitting down a penguin emerged from the sea and waddled over the rocks to the cliffs. It was pretty big - about 60cm tall - with yellow stripes across its face. We decided not to wait for more of them and instead left for Dunedin.
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