Had I awoken earlier I could have described the outstanding natural beauty of Abel Tasman National Park in much more depth, but as it was, I didn’t. Instead I woke late and missed the boat into the park. However, not all was lost because I parked the Tiger as close as I could get and ventured in on foot to get a sample. And indeed, it is a beautiful, tranquil place, especially when the sun is shining, which it was.
As the day was pushing on, I then started my long 4 hr ride to Greymouth on the West Coast which I thought would be a good place from which to explore the 2 famous Glaciers I was dying to see; Franz Josef and Fox. There were plenty of great places to stop along the way, such as Marahau (lots of canoeing) & Kaiteriteri (lovely beaches), and the ride over to the west coast was abound with beautiful vistas and fun twisty mountain roads.
There are 31 million sheep in New Zealand (70 million a few years ago) and only 4.4 million people. Goodness knows where they hide them all – all I could see were green fields…
I made the West Coast late afternoon at Westport and wasted no time turning south towards Greymouth to try and arrive before dark. The sun was close to setting as I pulled off to look at Pancake Rocks and the blow hole at Punakaiki, and as I ran down the short trail to the coast the sun just waited for me to take this cool photo before she turned in for the night.
I was then left to ride the few miles to Greymouth in the dark, but stopped off to take some more cool photos along the beach in the twilight.
Once in Greymouth I was pleasantly surprised to find my accommodation to be a very cheap & comfortable caravan in someone’s back garden. Even better, it was close to an Indian restaurant and a decent pub; what more could a man ask for?
Unfortunately the caravan was a tad too big to fit in my panniers.