THURSDAY 31st MAY - SUNDAY 3rd JUNE 2007
Flew to christchurch which is quite a nice little city. got there late afternoon so booked our bus, did all the boring stuff & got an indian takeaway - yum! On the Friday we went shopping to get some well needed thermals 'cause despite what Gaz says its absolutely FREEZING! Looked into skiing although there's no snow yet so thats a no-no.Wandered around town which felt homely as it has a really English feel to it (kind of olde English). We went into the cathedral for a nosy and climbed the spire to the top for views over the city which weren't that great to be honest - did overlook cathedral square though which was its only saving grace as its the centre point of the city so its quite bustly. There's always stuff going on in the square too such as mini local markets, performances & speeches etc. Has a good atmosphere. On the Saturday we got the bus to Lyttelton (a neighbouring town) & took the gondola up to the top of Mount Cavendish which had good views over Lyttleton harbour & towards the southern alps. Can see why everyone says NZ is beautiful - the views were r.good - can't wait for the rest of the country! We then followed the bridle path down into Lyttleton & caught the bus back. At the night we went to a sports bar called the holy grail to watch the All Blacks play (& beat)France. Has a gigantic (& i mean HUGE) screen for sports but we got there too late & it was packed so we watched the 2nd 1/2 in a realldy dodgy bar round the corner. Bit of a mistake. There was a really drunk old woman who befriended me just as Gaz conveniently left to go to the bar! Couldn't understand her much through her slurring but she persisted to tell me about her drunk of a fella who beat her up last week in the pub - as im sure u can tell - it was a VERY classy establishment! Gaz oblivious happily chatted away to kiwis at the bar about pig hunting! Needless to say we didnt stay there long! On the Sunday we took a walk along the Avon river which only confirmed our positive views about Christchurch. We then watched a performance in Cathedral square between 2guys - 1on a r.high uni-cylce & the other on a free standing ladder. They were pretty good performers & it was quite funny. We then hopped on the penguin bus to the International Antarctic centre which was not as boring as it might sound. In addition to all the expected museum spiel about Antarctica we saw some baby penguins which are undegoing rehabilitation from the wild & watched them get fed. The most exciting part of the day was the ride on the Haggerlund which is basically an all-terrain vehicle. It gave us a taster of going up steep inclines,going through water & doing 360 "doughnut" turns.was awesome - made even more so by the little girl in it with us - her face was a picture! she was scared senseless & was only stopped from crying by everyone elses positive response. Gaz found it hilarious! We also went inside a room built to simultate anatarctic conditions. It had a snow ski, an igloo, a wind machine & an ice slide! They also simultated the conditions of a snow storm which was definately not to my liking!