Author Topic: New Zealand with some Seoul  (Read 18996 times)

Offline Hershelsdeals

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Re: New Zealand with some Seoul
« Reply #120 on: December 11, 2014, 08:20:21 PM »
The next day we drove up to Greymouth, returned the rental car at the train station, and boarded the TranzAlpine to Christchurch.

It’s important to note that if you book your tickets ahead of time outside New Zealand, you will automatically be charged a higher price. In order to get a lower price, it needs to be booked from a local IP address. I tried a program to change my IP to a NZ one whilst in Israel, but it didn’t work. So as soon as we arrived in Auckland, I booked the tickets. After booking the tickets online, I called them to reserve seats. From Greymouth to Christchurch the better views are on the left side. I had read online that those seats were A&B but on my train that wasn’t the case so YMMV. They have a designated cabin without seats for photography, so I requested a car next to that one.

I booked the TranzAlpine due to the recommendation of a distinguished and esteemed DDF’er, however after spending so much time driving in the South Island, the views were not as amazing as what I had already seen. So I guess for someone visiting for short it’s a great way of getting a glimpse of the beauty of NZ, but for someone who spends as much time as I did, I would say pass.







Up next, Christchurch…

Offline efflpetzel

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Re: New Zealand with some Seoul
« Reply #121 on: December 11, 2014, 09:11:01 PM »

that thumbs up is starting to piss me off

Offline Hershelsdeals

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Re: New Zealand with some Seoul
« Reply #122 on: December 11, 2014, 09:13:38 PM »
that thumbs up is starting to piss me off
You'd rather get +1 ? What's the problem

Offline efflpetzel

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Re: New Zealand with some Seoul
« Reply #123 on: December 11, 2014, 09:33:37 PM »
You'd rather get +1 ? What's the problem
I'd rather get an

'hey moish great TR' or

'great pics & an amazing TR!' or

'unbelievable TR, amazing doing a trip like that with the kids',

those are some of the thoughts that pop into my head
rather than an expressionless emoji, but hey thats just me

And my problem isn't here, I'm starting to see you're golden thumb pop up all over DDF

Offline moish

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Re: New Zealand with some Seoul
« Reply #124 on: December 18, 2014, 01:39:08 PM »
Part 8: Christchurch

After pulling into the train station, we took a taxi to the Amore Motor Lodge. The 2011 earthquake destroyed or badly damaged all the hotels in the CBD area, so the only options were motels and the like. We booked a 2 bedroom “suite” which was comfortable and convenient.







Offline moish

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Re: New Zealand with some Seoul
« Reply #125 on: December 18, 2014, 01:39:36 PM »




The next day, Friday, we went to the Orana Wildlife Park. Besides for the regular zoo fare, they have interesting attractions that we wanted to do. First off was hand feeding the giraffes, which was enjoyed by all. For a cool picture, with your back facing the giraffe put the food over your shoulder for a great selfie.



Offline moish

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Re: New Zealand with some Seoul
« Reply #126 on: December 18, 2014, 01:40:02 PM »

 
Morepork



« Last Edit: December 18, 2014, 01:51:22 PM by moish »

Offline moish

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Re: New Zealand with some Seoul
« Reply #127 on: December 18, 2014, 01:40:39 PM »
After that, I did the feed the tiger attraction, which for NZ$30, they take you behind the scenes to the tiger cages and you feed a tiger meat with a pair of tongs.



Lastly, also for NZ$30 is the lion encounter attraction which is kind of a role reversal. You stand on a flatbed truck which is caged in and drive into the lion enclosure while the zookeeper feeds them. It was really neat to be so close to such powerful beasts and their roar. (The males were castrated which caused them to lose their manes.)





Offline moish

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Re: New Zealand with some Seoul
« Reply #128 on: December 18, 2014, 01:41:00 PM »






Offline moish

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Re: New Zealand with some Seoul
« Reply #129 on: December 18, 2014, 01:41:35 PM »
They had another encounter which I was really hoping to do, called Meet A Cheetah where they take you inside the cheetah enclosure and you interact with them for $100. After being inside a tiger cage, I was looking forward to this. However, 2 weeks before the trip, they emailed me that the cheetah encounter was closed permanently due to the cheetahs reaching maturity. I guess the timing wasn’t great since if you recall, a similar thing happened in the North Island with regards to Pat A Lion. We did, however, watch them feeding.





After Shabbos, on Monday, we drove out to the airport to visit the International Antarctic Centre. This is located in CHC since that is the gateway to Antarctica for all the researchers. It’s located right at the airport so it’s suitable even if someone has a shortish connection. First, we took a ride in a Hägglund – the all-terrain vehicle used in Antarctica. They take you on an obstacle course to show its capabilities which was cool.





Offline moish

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Re: New Zealand with some Seoul
« Reply #130 on: December 18, 2014, 01:42:10 PM »
We then watched a 4D movie of visiting Antarctica which was great. If you didn’t have a desire to visit Antarctica before you watched the movie, you definitely have one after. They also have a room which mimics an Antarctic storm, which gets down to -18 degrees Celsius with the wind chill. Lastly, they have Little Blue Penguins which are swimming and running around, and you can get a glimpse into their ‘houses’.





We then drove down to the CBD, or at least what remained of it after the earthquake. It was crazy to see the state of ruin and devastation that still existed over 2 years after it hit. Most of the CBD was still a “red zone” with heavily restricted access. We visited Quake City, an attraction which documents the earthquake. Afterwards, we went souvenir shopping at the re:START mall, a shopping mall constructed from shipping containers, which is one of the most popular shopping areas for both locals and visitors.





Offline moish

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Re: New Zealand with some Seoul
« Reply #131 on: December 18, 2014, 01:42:43 PM »






We then drove out to go “Punting on the Avon,” – boating, Venice style, on the Avon River, but since the weather was a bit drizzly, they shut down early for the day. I had seen an advertisement to drive a tank for NZ$800, a bit more to crush a car, and I seriously considered it for a good 10 minutes. Ultimately, I decided it was too expensive and passed.

We then went to the supermarket where interestingly enough, I found packaged fresh salmon with a hechsher. We went back to the hotel, grilled it up, and got an early night sleep for our early morning flight the next day to South Korea.



Up next, Seoul…

Offline Yehoshua

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Re: New Zealand with some Seoul
« Reply #132 on: December 18, 2014, 03:08:01 PM »
Wow, it certainly sounds like you had a great time in NZ. Definitely makes me want to visit. I wonder how many of the activities you did in late summer/early fall are doable in the winter (July/August).

Offline moish

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Re: New Zealand with some Seoul
« Reply #133 on: December 18, 2014, 03:15:58 PM »
Wow, it certainly sounds like you had a great time in NZ. Definitely makes me want to visit. I wonder how many of the activities you did in late summer/early fall are doable in the winter (July/August).
we sure did.

probably most, since i dont think their winters are too extreme

Offline Yaalili

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Re: New Zealand with some Seoul
« Reply #134 on: December 18, 2014, 10:19:09 PM »
Great report, does sound like a lot of money for all the individual animal attractions, not a cheap country to visit.