Monday, December 28, 2009

NZ 2009 Day 10 - Christchurch

check out time again. Seen in the photo are the 2 bedrooms (masters with queen bed and another bedroom with single bed + triple bunkbed) and the living / dining room. The single and queen beds have heated mattresses. This villa is highly recommended especially if you are travelling with family (up to 7 or 8 persons) and staying for a few days.

Today was another long roadtrip. We were on our way back to Christchurch via Inland Scenic Route 72. Unfortunately, weather was not on our side AGAIN. It was a bit drizzling and of course, cloudy. The scenic route was not that scenic anymore. We couldn't see the snow-capped mountains!

The kids were trying to make themselves busy during the trip. Ira was holding a map and acting as our navigator (but he was holding the wrong city map!). He talked about the round-abouts (there were lots by the way) and where we were supposed to be.

We saw some sheep crossing the road. I guess this is a normal sight when you are in New Zealand as this IS the land of a thousand (or should I say million) sheep.

Passed by a few small towns. By small, I mean really small. Our car would pass through the main road of the town in a few seconds! You would know the start and end of the town because the speed limit is lowered to around 50-70kph if you approach a town.

We arrived at Christchurch with a slightly better weather. We headed to Antarctic Centre to have a snow experience. But the snow experience itself was a bit disappointing. I could say the Snow City in Singapore is bigger and better.

Good thing there was more to the centre than just the snow, or we could have considered it to be highway robbery ($145 for 2 adults and 1 kid). They had penguin exhibits, videos/documentaries about Antarctica (which were really very informative/educational), and the hagglund ride (which can be considered the main event).

Ira LOVED the penguins. He was admiring the big penguin stuffed toy at the entrance.............
From International Antartic Centre
can't let go of it. Unfortunately, we cannot bring it back home.

the live penguin feeding session was a little bit interesting to him at first.......
From International Antartic Centre

 and the play area where they had some penguin toys.

From International Antartic Centre
comparing his height with the different types of penguins

From International Antartic Centre
the hagglund (display only)

From International Antartic Centre

From International Antartic Centre
Ira enjoyed the hagglund ride the best. The hagglund is an all-terrain vehicle mainly used in Antarctica. It brought us from the front of the centre to the main road to the back of the centre wherein there was a sort of obstable track especially made for the hagglund ride experience. We had to strap ourselves up in preparation for a very bumpy ride. We were like riding a roller coaster. The hagglund can go on steep terrain, road with crevaces and even float on water! Ira was like, "awesome, cool!", while all of the other tourists in the hagglund were screaming out of fear.

Just to prove how he really enjoyed the ride, we had to go for a second round! No choice, we had to accompany him.

After an adventurous afternoon, we headed to our hotel, checked in and rested until the night.

Around 11pm, we were up and about. We geared up for a cold night walk in the city. Had to make the most of our last day in the North Island.

Cathedral Square at night

the kids posing on the tram track
Bridge of Rememberance
Final shots outdoor with our hotel in the background

DAY 11

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