On the way to Westport we stopped at New Zealand's longest swing-bridge over the Buller Gorge, just past Murchison. We didn't pay to cross the bridge but we got to see it. It wasn't as impressive as I thought it would be.
We got to Westport late afternoon, in bad rain, so we just headed to the iSite to find out more information on the area. Westport is at the start of the West Coast region- the most unpopulated region in NZ (around 1% of the population). It was a small town, though it claims to be something more. Most of the towns in New Zealand and the cities, apart from Auckland so far, have been really small with nothing much there, just general shopping, some restaurants and bars and maybe a few sightseeing things. The hairdresser that cut Naths hair last told him that nearly everywhere in NZ is like that so it's more of a general thing now that once kids reach 18 they move off to either Auckland or one of the other cities as there is nothing much for them in their small towns. It's crazy really how unpopulated NZ is compared to home. For the night in Westport we stayed at Kawatiri Beach Reserve overlooking the Tasman Sea at Buller Bay, where the Buller river flows into the sea. We went to the source of the Buller river at Rotoiti lake and now we have been to its final destination.
On the 22nd we headed to the local swimming pool in the morning for a quick swim and then to make use of the hot showers and be able to dry my hair! It's getting desperate times using these swimming baths for us to shower!! We did do 32 lengths though. After the lovely swim and shower we set off down one of the top 10 costal highways in the world- highway 6 from Westport to Punakaiki.