Thursday, April 04, 2019

New Zealand Day 5 Akaroa

A rather atmospheric entrance to Akaroa Harbour. It did rain a little but we never got wet.




The ship to shore tenders were out. There was a significant delay for some reason. You never know what is behind issues on a cruise ship. The harbour waters were calm. See the sand that the ship propellers have stirred up.


Hmm, doesn't look very big.



What a delightful little village. Very pretty houses.











Smart apartments sitting above the village. What nice sea views they would have.








We made a couple of circuits of the town. There wasn't much seating at the waterfront. We looked at menus, $27 for fish and chips. We ambled back to the back street and there fish and chips were selling for $17. The further you get away from waterfronts, the cheaper the food is, as we learnt in Europe. The shared fish was delicious and there were so many chips, we could not eat them all. We tried to sit outside at the side of the building but all places under shelter were taken and a shower was coming through. We hovered for a bit inside and a couple at the window seats said they were leaving and offered us their seats, and with much gratitude, we accepted.




The waterfront cafes and restaurants.



There we are, out in harbour. It was about a twenty minute tender trip to reach the ship. Akaroa was just lovely but the memory will always be sadly tainted by the day's mosque massacre in Christchurch, a 1 hour 20 minute drive away but much closer as the crow flies.


Here is what I wrote soon after we arrived home.

A week ago on Friday we were moored at Akaroa, perhaps 30 km from Christchurch. Some of of the ship passengers had taken tours to Christchurch. Thank goodness our ship, the Golden Princess, had ABC News 24 available on out cabin tv. I was informed quickly by Our ABC about the Christchurch massacre. Some of the ship passengers were in Christchurch and caught up in the lockdown. Our ship left three hours late from Akaroa but we arrived on time at our next destination.

We just happened to be in our cabin when NZ PM Adern addressed the nation in the immediate aftermath, so reassuring to her people. She spoke off the cuff without notes and she was magnificent. The only politician who have seen come close to her was former Queensland Premier Anna Bligh in during the Queensland floods a few years ago. Adern was just magnificent. I don't know how much of her first speech was seen in Australia and elsewhere, but we watched it in full.

With notes, again the next day PM Adern addressed the nation with sympathy, reassuring words and strong action about gun control and again coincidently we were in our cabin and caught her speech. Of course we saw a good bit more of her and the aftermath of the shooting via Our ABC.

When ship announcements are made, people keep talking but at six pm on the day of massacre when our captain spoke about the events of the day and our late departure, you could have heard a pin drop. Our Italian captain's voice was a little shaky, clearly showing emotion in his speech. A sombre mood settled over the ship for the evening as people digested the day's events.

35 comments:

  1. That would be a very difficult thing to see on TV when so close to where it happened. What a beautiful little village. I would imagine the cruise ship visits give its economy a huge boost.

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    1. Strayer, some locals love have the big ships come in and some hate them. The businesses have to make money while the cruise season is underway, although Akaroa is a popular place for local tourists too.

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  2. That looks like an amazing experience! I guess you definitely pay for a view at any restaurant in a resort town, right? The locals are smart and know where to dine! I love those houses - they are so quaint and look so well kept! Very charming town! Thanks for sharing this! Annster's Domain

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    1. Annsterw, it was certainly a nice little town. Yes, always see what the locals do.

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  3. It must have been so difficult to get back into the holiday mood after the massacre. Hard not to feel guilty. That looked like a small village for a cruise ship to offload passengers.

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    1. That night on the ship was a little sombre, Marie. Yes, the cruise ship flooded the place with people spending money, but there are always people who go off and do tours and quite a number who never leave the ship.

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  4. What a truly beautiful place.
    Jacinda Adern was indeed magnificent. And how I mourn the need for that particular stellar display.

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    1. EC, Adern did NZ proud and absolutely hit the right note, for locals, her greater nation and overseas.

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  5. I hope the vicious atrocity that occurred that day in Christchurch doesn't spoil your memories of the truly beautiful unique place that is Akaroa. Your photos are gorgeous and capture the beauty of the town.

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    1. Cheryl, not really. I kind of dissociate the two memories. Thanks.

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  6. The world is an alarming place these days, horror in unexpected places happening more often. The NZ PM was magnificent in response. Andrew I loved seeing the pics of the architectural styles in Akaroa.. am enjoying your photos very much, merci beaucoup ✨

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    1. Grace, the second time you have said my photos are good. I know they are not that good, but thanks for the encouragement. Timber housing because?? Earthquakes.

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    2. I didn't really think about that Andrew, there must be a good reason.. of not!
      P.s. check out my post on 15th March re motorbikes.

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    3. Thanks Grace, it was interesting.

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  7. Pretty place. Love the clouds on the hills there/mountains.
    Typical about the price of food being cheaper away from the waterfront.
    Tragic the killings, so tragic that one just doesn't know what to say.

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    1. Margaret, It is strange how you can really like such a small place, but we did.

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  8. A Sweet and Sour visit. Very attractive little town, but the memories will always be of Christchurch.

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    1. No Cro, fish and chips, not Chinese. Sorry, yes a little sweet and sour.

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  9. I'd imagined Akaroa to be bigger, but I love the way it looks here. Those pretty little wooden houses, I'm guessing they don't have a termite problem there. Mmmm, fish and chips.
    I love the misty look of the first three photos.

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    1. River, haha, those houses wouldn't last long in SA. The fish was caught in the morning and the batter really good. The chips were pretty good too. It was a very atmospheric entry to the harbour.

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  10. Although the weather looks a bit ordinary in your photos, but the waterfront cafes and restaurants look perfectly located for eating in the fresh air and looking at the sea views. My favourite location for coffee and whatevers :)

    The gable roofs and dormer windows look delightful. Familiar in northern Europe, but quite unusual for Australia and New Zealand.

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    1. Hels, it reminded me in its layout at least, of Katakolon in Greece, near Olympia.

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  11. I love the little houses of Akaroa. We have them like this on Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket and a few Villages on Cape Cod. They're known as "Gingerbread Houses" as they resemble ones you might decorate at Christmas.
    Terrible tragedy in Christchurch.

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    1. Maribeth, they are very appealing to the eye. Ha, the infamous Martha's Vineyard.

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  12. What A Beautiful Little Village. Really Appreciate The Photos!! A Vacation That You Are Sure To Never Forget.

    Cheers Brother

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    1. We won't forget Padre, thanks.

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  13. It does look like a delightful, scenic village.

    Scary about Christchurch. The massacre was heartbreaking.

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    1. Sandra, and it was a nice surprise to us, unlike the less nice surprise later in the day.

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  14. Akaroa looks very charming. What a sad day it was and I agree that the NZ prime minister handled everything magnificently.

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    1. Sami, she did her nation proud in times of trouble.

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  15. I'm sorry I'm late in catching up on your posts, Andrew...I am with everyone's posts this past week or so.

    Sadness surrounds us....why there is so much hate and ignorance....I don't have the answers...other than perhaps "ignorance"...

    We are as one with our mates across the Tasman...and we always will be...

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    1. Lee, we do have a strong connection with the land of the long white cloud, with our similar colonial histories, but in some ways I think New Zealand has done relations with the native people better.

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  16. That was a very dark cloud over your cruise ! I also watched it on TV. A pity the landscapes look so pretty!

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    1. Gattina, it was awful, but we moved on the next day and its impact had lessened.

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Democracy is all very well, but why give it to the people? - Audrey Forbes-Hamilton.