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February 9, 2016 / cmfletcher

Going south

Another travel day — Interisland ferry from Wellington, North Island, to Picton, South Island. The ferry held about 500 passengers plus two full decks of cars. We had rented, and Budget makes you return the car in Wellington, and pick up a car in Picton. No problem.

We get to Picton and get the Rav4, and I notice that the luggage cover is missing. Fletcher slogs back to the office and gets grief from the clerk; they come out and establish that yes, indeed, the cover is missing. So what is her attitude. Not acceptable we say-we read Rick Steeve’s travel advice and problem solving column, and his advice is that you never accept a car with defects. She goes back and from somewhere reappears with a luggage cover and mentions that if we had brought the car back without one we probably would have been charged $1100. I just wonder what is going to happen to the renter who dropped off this car.

south_island_physicalOff we go, following the GPS. Well, the numbered road makes  rectangle, Picton to Blenheim back up to Havelock before continuing around the Tasman Bay to Nelson (the yellow splodge).  Our GPS wants to take a short cut, the coast road. Just so you know, this road is not shown on the map above, it follows the wiggles of the coast between Picton and Nelson. The speed limit was 50 Kilometers per hour, and we rarely reached that speed. It was a beautiful drive which I enjoyed; Peter had to keep his eye on the road.

This is why you plan trips with the timings the New Zealand government tells you on the tourist website. The roads are interesting; beautiful, but interesting, and speed is not likely.

We arrived at Nelson, which is supposed to be near the center of New Zealand. After traveling all day, we went for a long walk along the river path, through the town, up to the Anglican Cathedral and then back to our motel. The scenery is just wonderful.



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