A Tour of New Zealand’s Only White Heron Sanctuary

A Tour of New Zealand’s Only White Heron Sanctuary

a white heron, waitangiroto nature reserve, south island, new zealand

An opportunity to visit the only nesting site of White Herons in New Zealand could not be missed when traveling on the South Island near Whataroa.  A day in advance, we booked ourselves on a tour that would take us to the heart of the Waitangiroto Nature Reserve to observe these elegant birds. Read more

Our Encounter with Wild Kea, the World’s Only Alpine Parrot

Our Encounter with Wild Kea, the World’s Only Alpine Parrot

a Kea parrot in fiordland national park, south island, new zealand

Fiordland National Park on the South Island of New Zealand abounds with picturesque landscapes.  While there, several stops to appreciate the scenery also rewarded us with a couple of special bird sightings.  One pullover afforded us the encounter we had hoped for.  Several Kea, also known as New Zealand Mountain Parrots, flew in to greet us. Read more

Godwits Galore at the Pukorokoro Miranda Shorebird Centre, New Zealand

Godwits Galore at the Pukorokoro Miranda Shorebird Centre, New Zealand

bar-tailed godwits, Pukorokoro Miranda Shorebird Centre, north island, new zealand

On the next leg of our trip, between Auckland and our next lodgings in Rotorua, Bob and I planned a stop at the Pukorokoro Miranda Shorebird Centre.  Its reputation as being home to thousands of shorebirds made it a must-see destination, and we were keen to add some new birds to our life list.  The area did not disappoint.  Thousands of Bar-tailed Godwits had returned to spend summer on New Zealand’s North Island. Read more

Our cold, wet hike to Fox Glacier in New Zealand

Our cold, wet hike to Fox Glacier in New Zealand

jean at fox glacier, south island, new zealand

When Bob and I stayed in the community of Fox Glacier on New Zealand’s South Island, it made perfect sense to hike into the actual glacier for a look.  On the appointed day, a slight break in the rain encouraged us to set off, but we ended up hiking in cold, wet weather for a view of the ancient blue ice. Read more

Our walk among the whimsical limestone Elephant Rocks

Our walk among the whimsical limestone Elephant Rocks

elephant rocks, duntroon, south island, new zealand

From Oamaru, Bob and I made plans to visit the Elephant Rocks near Duntroon, some interesting limestone formations that were made famous by their appearance in the fantasy film The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Read more

The Eglinton River Valley abloom with Russell Lupins in New Zealand

The Eglinton River Valley abloom with Russell Lupins in New Zealand

russell lupins, eglinton river valley, fiordland national park, new zealand

While staying for a few days in Te Anau on the South Island, Bob and I made frequent trips into Fiordland National Park.  Panoramic views of the landscape were spectacular and in places made even more beautiful by broad swaths of Russell Lupins that grow in abundance there. Read more

A New Zealand Bellbird Enjoys the Nectar on a Rainy Day

A New Zealand Bellbird Enjoys the Nectar on a Rainy Day

a new zealand bellbird, lake matheson, south island, new zealand

It was a rainy afternoon when Bob and I finally made it to Lake Matheson to explore the walking tracks there.  The famous reflection of Mount Cook and Mount Tasman did not materialize on the lake’s surface, but we sure had dandy views of a New Zealand Bellbird alongside the trail. Read more

The Wonders of Ark in the Park at Waitakere Ranges, New Zealand

The Wonders of Ark in the Park at Waitakere Ranges, New Zealand

ark in the park sign, waitakere ranges regional park, north island, new zealand

After leaving Muriwai and the Gannet colony, Bob and I planned to make a stop at Ark in the Park en route back to our lodgings. Ark in the Park is a conservation area of note in the Waitakere Ranges Regional Park of Auckland. Situated in Cascade Kauri Park, it is where concerted efforts are being made to restore the ecology of the area to its natural state. Read more

Geothermal Wonders at Te Puia Geothermal Preserve near Rotorua, New Zealand

Geothermal Wonders at Te Puia Geothermal Preserve

Image of Pohutu Geyser at Te Puia Geothermal Preserve near Rotorua, New Zealand

Te Puia Geothermal Preserve near Rotorua, New Zealand, is located within Whakarewarewa Thermal Valley.  Bob and I decided to investigate the natural wonders caused by the continual geothermal activity in that Taupo Volcanic Zone of the North Island, this after spending the early part of the same day at another attraction, Hobbiton. Read more

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