Friday, 24 July 2015

Breckenridge, Colorado USA 2005

A gorgeous, snowy, rocky mountain ski village in winter, we took an off season summer family trip to Breckenridge, Colorado USA in August 2005.

We rode some ski lifts just to see the mountain views. We did tourist stuff - group hummer ride up to the top of the continental divide, white water rafting and a horse trek at the base of a ski hill.  Shane and I took in a spa massage, games at a nearby pool club and bit of exploring village shopping. Here are a few pictures from our trip.

Saturday, 20 June 2015

Weekend in Sydney 2013

Some pictures from an awesome weekend in Sydney Australia... 

We visited our friend Jonathan and his wife, kids... J took us for ribs on Sydney Harbor. We went to a mini zoo with a huge live crocodile on exhibit. We did some shopping, site seeing by ferry - saw the iconic harbour bridge, opera house and Bondi Beach, We went to a Rugby League game where NZ Warriors won! After the match, they allowed fans to go directly on to the playing field.  

Sunday, 31 May 2015

Auckland, NZ

We moved to Auckland, New Zealand in 2007.  As of June 2015, the population in NZ is estimated at 4.5 million with the majority of people living in Auckland - approximately 1.4 million. 

New Zealand
A 2 hour plane from Sydney, Australia, New Zealand "glistens like a pearl, at the bottom of the world...".  The Maori arrived in boats and settled in Aoteroa (land of the long white cloud) about 5-600 years ago. NZ product exports and local tourism are two big industries. NZ is a wonderful tourist destination - boating, hiking, skiing, wine tasting are just a few activities to partake in.

Stats from wikipedia "NZ is an island country in the southwestern Pacific Ocean. The country geographically comprises two main landmasses – that of the North Island, or Te Ika-a-Māui, and the South Island, or Te Waipounamu – and numerous smaller islands. New Zealand is situated some 1,500 kilometres (900 mi) east of Australia across the Tasman Sea and roughly 1,000 kilometres (600 mi) south of the Pacific island areas of New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga. Because of its remoteness, it was one of the last lands to be settled by humans. During its long isolation, New Zealand developed a distinctive biodiversity of animal, fungal and plant life. The country's varied topography and its sharp mountain peaks, such as the Southern Alps, owe much to the tectonic uplift of land and volcanic eruptions. New Zealand's capital city is Wellington, while its most populous city is Auckland.

Polynesians settled New Zealand in 1250–1300 CE and developed a distinctive Māori culture. Abel Tasman, a Dutch explorer, was the first European to sight New Zealand in 1642.[6] In 1840, representatives of the British Crown and Māori Chiefs signed the Treaty of Waitangi, making New Zealand a British colony. Today, the majority of New Zealand's population of 4.5 million is of European descent; the indigenous Māori are the largest minority, followed by Asians and Pacific Islanders. Reflecting this, New Zealand's culture is mainly derived from Māori and early British settlers, with recent broadening arising from increased immigration. The official languages are English, Māori and New Zealand Sign Language, with English predominant. The country's economy was historically dominated by the export of wool, but exports of dairy products, meat, and wine, along with tourism, are more significant today." 

Below are a few snaps from around Auckland.  Come visit us any time! Cheers mates...

us on a beach! (ok bit out of Auckland, we're actually at Mt Maunganui - 3 hrs drive from Auckland)
Piha Beach

somewhere on Scenic Drive - on the way to Piha Beach

view platform to see the Gannet colony at Muriwai Beach

overlooking the Gannet Colony at Muriwai Beach

Muriwai Beach

cave at Muriwai Beach

view from "pipeline trail" on Exhibition Drive

Upper Nihoputu Dam

hiking near Fairy Falls in the Waitakere Ranges

tall ship docked in Auckland Harbor - pic taken from a motor boat

view from motorway - I think Highway 1 going north of Orewa

harbour view of downtown Auckland

horse races at Karekare Beach