I am combining days because the internet is so slow, I cannot load pictures or publish at most campsites. Not sure how they exist here; hard to do much with the slow speed. Spoiled, we are.
Bluff does not get good reviews but we really liked it. There was a great overlook with a panoramic view to the south of the South Island.
We were driving to Dunedin in a day along the coast. Cathedral Caves were on the way; there is only a two hour window at low tide where you can get to the caves and we hit it perfectly, so we hiked down to the caves and walked around inside these limestone caves.
The beaches go on forever and like most of the beaches on the east coast so far, not a soul in sight.
Dunedin has a population if 118,000 and is a college town. It has a very large protected bay that is formed by the Otago Peninsula. We drove out there to an albatross visitor center. What a gorgeous drive!
The albatross center was awesome! We did a guided tour with a guide who was so passionate and knowledgeable about these birds. 46 pairs they are monitoring currently with very few survivors.They are huge birds with 9 foot+ wingspans.
The albatross are quite endangered by all the plastics in the ocean. Plastics, after about a month in the ocean, emit a gas that is the same gas emitted by the krill that they eat. They eat huge amounts and then come back and regurgitate the food into the young chicks. See the picture below- 52 pieces of plastic, to include an entire toothbrush, was found in the stomach of a dead bird!
JR and I found the college campus and walked around. Beautiful architecture!They are known for their clock tower.
Dunedin was overcast, windy and damp.
We had a grand finale to the day. We met a young friend we knew in Anchorage (he grew up there) and took a 2 year job stint in Dunedin. Zak and Natasha rendezvoused with us and we all had a great dinner. It was really great to see and visit with Jacob Wahry, catch up on his life and get an inside story into life in Dunedin.
We spent the night at a campervan park right inside the city.