February 12 To Dunedin (Day 138)

After breakfast this morning we met John & Martha at their hotel and went back to the Kiwi Park for a 10am “Kiwi Encounter“. The half hour presentation takes place in the darkened Kiwi House where the day/night cycle is switched so that the kiwi are awake and active during our daytime. That makes it hard to see the kiwi until your eyes adjust, which takes about half an hour! It was amazing, we never realized that kiwi are that active and that they are that big! The females are about the size of a small chicken, the males smaller. Photography is not allowed, so no pictures. After our encounter we crossed the road to the Gondola and took a ride up Bob’s Peak for spectacular views!

As we rose up the steepest cable car lift in the Southern Hemisphere the jagged Remarkables mountain range came into view in the distance. A few paragliders float over town and the waterfront beach is visible. The closest peninsula is the Queenstown Gardens, while the further one has a golf course.

A montage of views; paragliders, town and cable car view, and a bungy jumping platform, not in use because of construction in the area.

After a short walk around town we eventually said our goodbyes, to meet again in Bend, and we took our leave, heading to our next stop in Dunedin while John and Martha are heading to Milford Sound tomorrow. A short way out of Queenstown we stopped at the Kawarau Gorge Suspension Bridge to get a coffee. It turns out that this is the birthplace of Bungy jumping! We stuck around to watch one jumper, then watched on the big screen in the visitors center to see another would-be jumper back away!

The man in the red t-shirt jumped, or rather stepped (maybe pushed) off the platform. He hung for a few minutes until the boat came for him to grab the pole to be pulled down into the boat and then had to climb a steep staircase to get back to the top! The young lady in the upper right picture decided it was too risky and stepped back from the edge!

We continued on through landscape that reminded us of eastern Oregon and stopped at a park along the Clutha river for a quick nap.Before reaching our Airbnb near Dunedin, above the shore of Otago Harbour.

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