We are visiting New Zealand for the third time. Our most recent trip was six years ago 3 days after a major earthquake in Christchurch. This time we are only visiting a few places that attracted our attention from previous visits rather than tour the entire country. Our first stop is the town of Dunedin. Dunedin is the Maori name of Edinburgh, Scotland. This is a city of 120,000 with 30% of the population university students. The surrounding area is mostly farm and forest. It is amazing that here in the fall of the year everything is still green and luxurious.
On the way between Dunedin and Christchurch we stopped at a beach where the Moeraki Boulders are the prominent feature. This is an unusual geologic formation (septarian concretions) and we were surprised to find that they had changed from the time we were here six years earlier.
Christchurch has a variety of attractions. We were lucky enough to stumble upon boat races at New Brighton where lifeguard rescue boats and a strange kind of surfboard/kayak were racing. Yes, they are skimpy swim suits.
Also, the Christchurch Botanical Gardens are lovely.
When we last visited Christchurch it was three days after the major quake that destroyed 70% of the central city. We had expected that six years later we would see a rebuilt city but we were sad to see that only a portion of the construction has been completed. While there are many new modern buildings and the economy is coming back, the quake was so severe that this has taken a long time and it's still going to be a long time before Christchurch is back to normal.