A Travellerspoint blog

North Island Roadie, Whanganui

Whanganui

Sunday 23rd May

13degrees bitterly cold south easterly

A quieter day today. On leaving Castlecliffs we were saddened to see some of the roadside plantings damaged overnight. They are exceptional and by the size of them I know they are many years in the making.
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Our first destination was Upokongaro where Anna (Sal’s friend) grew up. This is just a few kilometres up the road and has a great cafe for a morning coffee. Also there is St Mary’s Church with a distinctive steeple.
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We didn’t realise that it also has special stained glass windows but maybe today we can remedy that. There is an amazing new cyclists bridge over the river also. As happens frequently in NZ, we got talking to a woman who’s son went to school with Anna’s husband.

We had started out with the intention of driving up the side of the Whanganui River to Atene and a skyline walk.
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However once we stopped at the Aramoana lookout and got talking to some locals it no longer seemed a good idea, so drove on to Parakino then turned and returned back. It had been suggested to us to walk around Virginia Lake but when we got there “no dogs” so walked the perimeter and watched some men with their model yachts on the Lake.
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Maddie back in the van and we had a brisk walk in the Park. Noticed a woman taking photos with the ducks and Paddington Bear, so off course we had to know what that was about. Turns out she is writing a book about the Adventures of Paddington Bear-so Sal took some shots of her back view for another angle.
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Huge variety of birds on the Lake and not all of them sweet natured i.e.white swans who are apparently very territorial. The Canadian geese are not shy of letting you know that you are walking in their ‘hood’ as well.
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Both of us feeling tired so found a nice freedom camping spot on Anzac Parade with nice toilets and about a dozen other campers. Made ourselves known to the neighbours (from Timaru) then a nice evening relaxing.

Posted by Sallyj66 00:24 Archived in New Zealand

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