Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Dolphins! and Penguins! and Wallabies! Oh my!

Recently we sailed from the Bay of Islands to Auckland, and it was a trip filled with wild beasties. We spotted jellyfish, little blue penguins, small white and grey dolphins that swam with our boat, wallabies - not just small kangaroos!, native wood pigeons and peacocks.

This jellyfish was quite large and I really enjoyed watching it swim all around. One of the locals laughed at me for taking pictures of a jellyfish, but what can I say- there weren't any where I can from, and who knew they have spots??

The Bay of Islands (BOI) is an amazing place. I must have taken 700 pictures just like this one because everywhere you look it is just heartbreakingly beautiful. Sadly, pictures cannot do it justice. You will just have to come and see for yourself!

This is Hole In The Rock, and is a major tourist destination. At low tide boats can fit through the hole.

More wild beasties. That red flag is the flag of the Vice Commodore for our yachting club. That's right- we were invited to sail with the Vice Commodore! I tell you New Zealand is the most fantastic and fascinating place! Yachting seems so snooty in the US, but here everyone sails, and lots of people have boats and most are quite happy to invite us along! I think we are very lucky people.

This is for those of you that want to see more of the boat. I'll let B explain what happened to the main sail.
In BOI we anchored in this small, quiet nook and rowed to the beach:

And hiked up to this cemetary on the hill:

Quite a nice place to spend eternity, really.

But most importantly, we saw Dolphins:

P has declared that seeing these dolphins was one of the best experiences of her entire life. I think dolphins have this effect on a lot of people as our good friend, la hamburgler, went swimming in the BOI and told us that it was one of the most amazing experiences of his life.

B took some lovely video of the dolphins, which I will endeavor to install in this post later.

Then we went to Kawau, and the Mansion House. B has been here before, so read more about it here.
Below is a picture of the boat from the beach, above.

Here we saw wekas (a native bird that is very rare and reminds me of little dinosaurs), peacocks, wallabies and the also rare native wood pigeon, which is very fat and heavy looking for a bird, and makes a lot of noise when it flies.

This is the wood pigeon. This is a rather slimming photo of the bird, I think. Imagine it weighing an additional kilogram, and wheezing when it flies and you have a good idea of what I'm talking about.


Marlene said...

The photos are fantastic. What an incredible place to live. I am so glad that you are all having such wonderful adventures. Thank you for sharing! Jelly Fish are unusual sea creatures. I love the colors! It is good to see you all in the photos.... Marlene

Mel W-K said...

You guys are so lucky to have the opportunity to live in such a beautiful, interesting place.

corinne said...

That looks AMAZING~and you do such great storytelling. Everything looks so beautiful...if I ever get some extra cash I would love to come see it all for myself!

SJ Hagen said...

Hey...who is that tiny person in the pics next to Pascally? Did you adopt or give birth to a little person while away.

Sarah Stewart said...

Wow, what stunning photos!