We took advantage of the archives being closed for the holidays and went on an adventure to the Southland on December 28th. The Catlins is the name of the area we visited. It included waterfalls, massive ocean beach caves and lighthouses. Here we go!!
Nugget Point Lighthouse
It started out with a drive to Nugget Point where the lighthouse is located. After a short walk from the carpark, we were standing there looking at the most beautiful setting for a lighthouse. It was a little foggy for us, but the beauty wasn't lost because of it. We will definitely be back to this place on a sunny day.
|The beginning of the trail to the lighthouse.|
|You can see why they needed a lighthouse.|
|This place gets its name from the nugget-like formations in the ocean.|
|The early morning fog lifted after we left|
|These local beach goers didn't seem to mind the weather.....|
|..... nor did these bathing beauties!!|
Purakaunui Falls was our next stop. It was another short walk from the carpark to the falls, this time through beautiful winding trails among amazing trees and shrubs.
|We want our backyard in North Ogden to look like this.|
|Some tree trunks look hollow and dead, but enough root system grows up through what is left to support it.|
|At the end of the trail they have built very nice platforms to view the falls from.|
|One last look as we departed.|
Cathedral Caves were next. They are only accessible at low tide. We found out that Elder Edward's calculations of low tide were a little ways off. After a long downhill hike we found ourselves on a beautiful beach and a short walk to the caves. The only problem was that the tide was coming back in and we got a wee bit wet getting to the caves. Actually, Elder Edward was quite wet after a wave smacked him almost knee high. The beach shoes we brought did come in handy.
|The caves were around the bend. You can see we have a little bit of the sea between us and the caves.|
|Once we got to the caves we had time for a quick look.|
|The entrance was awesome!!|
|Looking back out at the waves rolling in.|
|It was a fun experience..... short, but fun.|
|One last walk through the water back to the beach.|
|Couldn't leave without writing something in the sand!!|
Next on the adventure was McLean Falls. It was about a fifteen minute walk through some of the most lush foliage you can imagine. Another well prepared trail system with stairs helped us get to the falls. Once there, we were not disappointed.
|Trees grow in all different directions.|
|We walked through several tunnels of trees and shrubs this day.|
|A little falls let us know we were getting close.|
|The bottom of the falls was a long way from the top. We still had quite a hike to go.|
|First view of McLean Falls was accompanied by the roar of the water..... breathtaking!!|
|The water went over several tiers on its way down. We could walk right up to it as it rushed by.|
We finished off our adventure with a drive to Curio Bay. It is located near Slope Point, the southern most point on the South Island of New Zealand.
|Curio Bay was a very busy area. Camping out is very popular in New Zealand..... very popular.|
|Every direction is another amazing view.|
|Happy to report that we saw no nearby sea lions or tsunamis..... whew!!|