We headed for Wellington on Friday 7th via Featherston and a dramatic drive between the Tararua and Rimutaka ranges, accompanied by a short spell of thunder and lightning. We thought about stopping at Upper Hutt but decided against it, and eventually found the Wellington Top 10 Park in Lower Hutt. Pizzas from Hell were delivered and lived up to expectation. Saturday 8th, election day, dawned fine and sunny for our exploration of the capital city. We were dropped at the base of the cable car and rode up to the top for a meander down through the botanical gardens, full of native plants and trees, and beautifully kept. Chris & Mary went to replace a lost lens filter and then had a free guided tour round the waterfront on a baxi tricycle; meanwhile John and Jane had an enjoyable and very reasonable boat trip round the harbour. We met up in Cuba Sreet, a lively alternative part of town for a great meal at No.6. the favourite restaurant of the shuttle bus driver who picked us up, Colonel Sanders lookalike and cheer leader for Wellington Stadium. We arrived early at the ferry terminal on Sunday, which started sunny, though as we crossed the Cook Strait it began to cloud over so by the time we entered the Queen Charlotte Sound it was fairly overcast. Nevertheless the final hour of the cruise through the sound to PIcton was impressive. We arrived in good time at the holiday park for a quick G&T, then into the small but perfectly formed town of Picton for a most enjoyable supper at Le Cafe.