Dunedin and the Otago Peninsula

Otago view

The Otago Peninsula - just outside of Dunedin

All these lambs may be cute, but they’re starting to cramp our style! We had plans for a couple of really cool hikes in Dunedin, but when we got there we found out that the tracks had been closed for lambing season because they were on private land. 😦 Bummer.

Instead, we spent an afternoon touring about the Otago Peninsula. I feel a bit like a broken record, but I have to say it… it was gorgeous (just like all of New Zealand). Dunedin is a big university town, but the hills and cliffs of the Otago Peninsula makes the exam special happy hours seem a million miles away.

 

otago dunedin

The view of Dunedin from the Otago Peninsula

 

I was super excited about our trip out to the peninsula because of the Albatross colony at Taiaroa Head. Albatross are the giant (wingspan 3m) white birds that spend most of their lives at sea; this particular colony is the only mainland colony in the southern hemisphere, and is now a protected nature reserve. It’s Spring down here, so it is also nesting time. Since 19 of the 21 species of Albatross are threatened by extinction, nesting time is treated very carefully at the colony, and visits are not allowed. Although I was a little disapointed not to see them, I can appreciate and respect that it is better to close the reserve and give them so peace and quiet!

Albatross. photo credit: Royal Albatross Colony & Centre

Albatross in flight. Photo credit: Royal Albatross Colony & Centre

The roads were very narrow and windy, but luckily there was very little traffic!

otago hills

Beautiful pasture and hills

 

The girl we were couch surfing with told us that we had to check out Sandfly Bay and the sea lion colony. On the eastern side of the peninsula the coast at Sandfly Bay was very exposed and it was a really windy day. We could barely stand straight at the view point, so we decided not to go down onto the sand dunes… personally, I’m not a big fan of being turned into a piece of human sand paper.

otago bay

A bit windy and wavy at Sandfly Bay

otago windy

Fits of giggles as we were almost blown away!

otago mir hair

Miranda won the contest for "Best Hair" today!

Back in Dunedin, I watched a ‘classic’ New Zealand flick called Black Sheep. I usually don’t watch horror films, but I was assured that it wasn’t actually scary. It wasn’t, but it was hilarious. I would consider it an essential component of any trip to New Zealand.

"An experiment in genetic engineering turns harmless sheep into blood-thirsty killers that terrorize a sprawling New Zealand farm" - IMDb

 

I will never look at sheep the same way again.

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2 Comments

Filed under Travel

2 responses to “Dunedin and the Otago Peninsula

  1. Nice Landscapes Dunedin and photos of you Thanks for sharing the Story.
    God Bless you.

  2. Jo

    Loved looking at your pics as I was just there myself not so long ago. Take a look at this entry:
    http://vipbackpackers.wordpress.com/2010/02/19/a-plateful-of-wildlife-in-new-zealand/

    Cheers!

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