Auckland

Trip Start Nov 21, 2008
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71
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Trip End May 29, 2009


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Flag of New Zealand  , North Island,
Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Auckland, the largest city in New Zealand is a humble city.  It has a similar feel to the Australian cities and is clean and modern but is just so much smaller.  Meeting friends outside Auckland's most famous site - the skytower, we stopped for a coffee to discuss a plan for the day.  The skytower is really the only semi remarkable part of Auckland architecture wise and if you are comparing it to the great cities of the world and the amazing heights of the skyscrapers of Shanghai or Dubai it really looks a little bit pathetic.  Still in the inimitable character of the Kiwi people they have given it that little bit of extra excitement.  How many other skyscrapers in the world can you actually bungee jump off of? We spent a short time wandering around the streets of Auckland and a visit to the docks to see the boats which really doesn't take that long, Auckland just feels so small even when compared to Melbourne.  Being somewhat short on sights in the city centre itself we decided on one of the attractions a short trip outside the city centre and choosing between the Aquarium, Zoo or National Museum that had been recommended to me by a friend, we decided on a visit to the National Museum.  This was a wonderful experience and here in the largest museum in New Zealand can be seen a wealth of Artefacts and information on the culture that makes New Zealand that unique and mystical place - The Maori people.  The Maori culture has a similar feel to the Polynesian seafarers from which it is descended and the display of beautifully carved wooden boats and tribal ornaments was huge.  The spiritual nature of Maori beliefs were also touched upon along with a sample of their way of life and the history of the impact of the European discoverers. With only a little time left we ventured back into town for a farewell meal with my friends before being due at the airport for my flight to Chile.  We celebrated our antipodean liaison with a fine New Zealand steak and a fond farewell.
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