Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Our New Zealand Vacation: Day Eight

Day Eight:  28 December 2013

Today's drive is not as long as previous days.  We are driving to Nelson today... about 5 hours away.  So last night we stayed at Gables Motor Lodge - not a bed and breakfast.  We were on our own for brekkie.  Mr. Smith had been very excited to see McDonalds aka Mickey D's aka Maccas last night.  So we decided to eat breakfast there.  It had been a really long time since I've eaten at a McDonalds, except for the 30 cent cones.

Mr. Smith ordered the pancakes and black coffee.  They gave him white coffee.

I ordered an egg mcmuffin with hash browns and a mochaccino.  I ordered the large coffee, thinking that I could take it with me in the car.  When they brought it over, it was in a real glass.  And it was a GLASS... like for water.  So every time I would pick it up to drink, my fingers were scalded.

Just out of curiosity...  have you ever had a mocha from McDonalds?  I think they may have been trying to kill me with sugar.  I could not have had more sugar unless I had decided to take Karo syrup and drunk the whole bottle.  Honestly, I felt like I was going to get sick and I never want a coffee from Maccas ever again.  Greymouth is going down in my books as the home of the worst coffee I've ever had.

So now we are back on the road and I am ill.  I went into a sugar coma until Mr. Smith pulled over to walk through the pancake rocks and blowholes.

We stopped somewhere that I can't remember and found these stones on the beach.

I thought they were pretty cool.

Lucy loves the beach

Okay... this is some signage about the Pancake Rocks

Our next stop was at New Zealand's longest swing bridge.  To see this, you had to pay.  It was $5 to walk across the swing bridge and it was $30 to take the zip line back to the other side.  (Of course, you didn't have to take the zip line.  It was free to walk back across the bridge.)  So, what the hell... it's our vacation so we paid to take the zip line back.  And it was fun.  Especially the part where I was eaten alive by the sand flies.  I'm still scratching like a mad woman.  We even paid the $25 to get the USB stick with stills and video of us taking the zip line.

My feet on the swing bridge - it's pretty high up!

There was a little walk on the other side of the bridge.

On the zip line

We stopped in a cafe for lunch.  Mr. Smith had fish and chips and I had a toasted ham and cheese sandwich.  Honestly, the name of the town and the cafe escapes me.  The only thing I can remember about this place is that we continued to be eaten alive by sandflies.

We continued driving to Nelson, but kept driving through town to get to the Happy Valley Adventures for the skywire ride.  For $75 each, they drive you up a mountain in a rickety old van through a sheep farm and a stream to a place way above the treetops.

Four people are loaded into a row of chairs and harnessed in.  Then they unhook it and you race down and across aided by gravity.  We went over 90 km/hr!!  Then it slows down and you look down over the trees.  It was so peaceful.  Then over 90 km/hr backwards!!  You are then all driven back down the mountain.

No idea what I was doing here.  LOL

Over 90 km/hr!!

After this we drove to our bed and breakfast called Ambleside.  It is owned by Robyn and Kees.  Chelsea, their Maine coon cat, is also in residence.  We stayed in a lovely cream coloured room.  The bathroom was a bit tight, but the towels and the Linden Leaves products they provided were top notch.

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