Richard & Stacy's Round the World Trip 2001


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Update Log
Summary of the Trip
The Family Album
Day 1 - Departing
Day 2 - Amsterdam
Day 3 - Veldhoven
Day 4 - CttM Day One
Day 5 - CttM Day Two
Day 6 - The Holland Tour
Day 7 - Off to Istanbul
Day 8 - Seraglio Point
Day 9 - Bosphorous Tour
Day 10 - Exploring Sultanahmet
Day 11 - The City Walls
Day 12 - The Asian Side
Day 13 - Taking a Break
Day 14 - Leaving Turkey
Day 15 - A Day in Singapore
Day 16 - Arrival in Sydney
Day 17 - Exploring Sydney
Day 18 - ODDC Day One
Day 19 - ODDC Day Two
Day 20 - Toranga Zoo
Day 21 - Off to New Zealand
Day 22 - Road Trip to Tauranga
Day 23 - Tauranga to Taupo
Day 24 - Visiting Granny Stanton
Day 25 - Leaving Levin
Day 26 - Return to Auckland
Day 27 - The Trip Home

Thursday, May 31, 2001.

And then we're off to New Zealand. We rose early, around 5am, primarily to enjoy one last serious shower in our hotel room. A little last minute packing - amazingly, everything still fit in our bags, but only barely. And, as usual, we had acquired a new bag, although this was a small one - the conference bag.

The taxi ride to the airport was quick and uneventful, as was check in, customs and security clearance. In no time, we were sitting in the Air New Zealand lounge, enjoying a little breakfast. We had checked all our "big" bags - they were all overstuffed, likely wouldn't fit into overhead bins, and the flight was only a few hours, hardly anything to worry about. We'd already had three overnight flights this trip, anything else is easy.

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Bags packed at the hotel.    Stacy grabs a little cereal for breakfast in the Air New Zealand lounge in the Sydney airport.

The flight is three hours, in an Air New Zealand 767, comfortable and quick. There wasn't enough time to do much of anything except read and work on the web site. Got some great views of the city of Sydney at sunrise along the way.

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Sydney, shortly after take off and sun rise... lots of people living here.    Gaining altitude, looking over the northern part of Sydney.
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During the sharp turn to take us off shore, we caught a glimpse of the Olympic Stadiums.    Richard and Stacy enjoying the comfortable ride to Auckland. 

In no time the flight was over and we made landfall in New Zealand. There was some light cloud, but for the most part it was sunny - in contrast to our fears; we had expected rain during the late fall in the southern hemisphere. Our approach to the airport took us right over the city and out over the harbour on the east side before turning around and approaching for an east-to-west landing.

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The big map at the front of the aircraft shows our flight over the Tasman Sea.    Landfall, New Zealand. This is the west coast, Auckland is not far away.
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Flying over Auckland, we get a view of the Auckland Harbour Bridge that connects the north and south sides of the city.    A picture of Mt. Eden, the largest of 48 volcanoes within Auckland. Where most of Auckland is at sea level, Mt. Eden reaches 196 metres high.
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A shot of the War Memorial in the Auckland Domain, one of Auckland's oldest parks.   This is Hobson Bay, crossed by Tamaki Drive connecting the eastern part of Auckland with the central part.
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In the foreground is Browns Island, and behind that Rangitoto and Motutapu Islands, all environmental reserve land.    Now flying west again, we get at the landscape south of Auckland - endless farms.

Our landing was uneventful, and we passed quickly through customs - coming from Australia made it easy, they'd already done all the quarantine work. We had rented a car for our week in New Zealand, it turned out to be a Honda CRV. The challenge now was to drive a right-hand drive vehicle on the left-hand side of the road. The week in Australia helped to make this a bit less traumatic, but there were still moments where you were convinced you were doing something seriously wrong...

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A list of locations and distances from the Auckland airport.    A beautiful wooden Maori entrance frame above the path to customs at the airport.
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Stacy pushing all the luggage out to the rental car area.    The rented Honda CRV. Notice the lack of dents.
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Richard driving a right-hand drive vehicle.    One of those white knuckle "I'm on the wrong side of the road!" moments.

Aunt Jeanette had told us of a bed & breakfast called the Tortara Lodge in Manukau, just southeast of Auckland. It turned out it was only fifteen minutes away, even with white knuckle driving - the airport is also south of the Auckland. The place is right beside a park, and is surrounded by small farms.

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Our bedroom in the Tortara Lodge.    Our living room (!) in the Tortara Lodge.
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The view to the south out of the windows of the living room, just rolling pastures.    Looking east, you can see some housing development in the distance.

We were on our own for dinner, and it was only late afternoon, so to avoid wasting any sunlight, we took a drive into Auckland proper to explore and find a meal. Of course, it was Thursday, so we drove straight into Auckland rush hour. Once we made it downtown, it took awhile to get our bearings.

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The front of the Tortara Lodge, so we wouldn't forget what it looks like.    Rush hour, Kiwi style. Notice we're on the left side of the highway.
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During one of our exploration trips (aka - turning around and going back), we found the Black Magic shipyards, winners of the America's Cup twice running.    Very Granville Island like area known as Princess Wharf. Lots of pubs and things along here. In the background you can see the Sky Tower, an Auckland landmark.
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Looking north off the end of Princess Wharf, the far less developed north side of Auckland.    Walking back along the wharf, looking at the ferry terminal in Waitemata Harbour.
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Sunset over Auckland. Behind us is the Loaded Hog, where we would grab dinner. This site was also where the party for Black Magic was held.    On our way back, Stacy wanted to grab some groceries from the market near the B&B...

Turned out the Loaded Hog, where we had dinner, was one of the more famous eateries along the wharf, which was just plain luck after walking past all those other eateries around there. We saw a great photograph of the celebrations for Black Magic in the same harbour, must have been several hundred thousand people there when the winners of the America's Cup came a'callin.

We settled in for the night, which would turn out to be much colder than we expect. The next day we'd head down to Tauranga to visit with the aunts.