Tag Archives: photography

Day Trips for the Uninspired: To the coast with the Post. Wairarapa Region

Early on Tuesday morning I drove down to Featherston for a different kind of day trip. When I reached Featherston I stopped in to the Everest Café for a coffee and a bite to eat and to wait for Gordon.

Gordon is the local RD2 rural mailman and as well as delivering the mail he also offers a unique tour called: “To the coast with the Post” where you get to ride along with him on his daily 220km mail run all the way to Southern most point of the North Island.

Although, I am not a stranger to the Wairarapa, Gordon showed me places I had never visited before and filled me in, on some of the local history.

I have often driven past Burnside Church but on Tuesday I got to go inside and have a look around this beautiful old church, which was built in the 1800’s. We also stopped at the Pirinoa Country Store, which was also established in the 1800’s. The store is the hub of the Pirinoa community, its a one stop shop for everything from petrol to groceries.

I also got to see the flood gates, some back country road scenery, old buildings and a memorial to 12 crew from the ship wrecked Zuleiki in 1897.

We also visited Lake Ferry, on the shores of Lake Onoke, Ngawi  and Cape Palliser, home of the NZ fur seal colony and Lighthouse.

We had lunch at Cape Palliser and hung out with the seals for a while, then headed back to Featherston.

I thoroughly enjoyed my trip and I would like to thank Gordon for his hospitality and laughs along the way.

The photo opportunities are endless, there is so much to see, it is also a great trip to do if you don’t have a lot of time but want to see what the Wairarapa has to offer. Lunch and snacks are also provided.

If you would like to find out more or book the “To the coast with the Post” tour. Visit Gordon’s page on Facebook or click on the tour link in the second paragraph. Also visit “To the Coast with the Post” on Tripadvisor to read some of the great reviews, this tour has been given.

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Day Trips for the Uninspired: Sunset Trips

The sand, water, wind, sunlight & clouds are true alchmists of nature. They always put on a good show, never the same, always changing.

Daylight saving makes it easier to go and visit places to watch and photograph the sunset and yes, in some cases by the time we get home, its nearly midnight.  Sometimes, you don’t have to travel too far, local is good but sometimes it pays to travel further a field.

If we are heading out the time may vary depending on where we are planning to go. Its no different than going on a day trip. Sometimes we take our food with us, depending on where we are going, other times we stop off somewhere and grab a bite to eat. The gear apart from my camera, I always take with me, year round is listed in Safety Tips for Your Trip.

I love the beach as does Gina, the crashing waves, the open spaces, the sand beneath your feet. I find being out and travelling around, keeps my cup full, just being on the road and going somewhere, makes me smile.

If you are interested in visiting any of these destinations, please click on the following links, Destination Wairarapa, CastleCliff Beach, Woodville, Balance, Otaki Beach, Porangahau Beach, Herbertville, Hokio Beach, Foxton Beach, Himatangi Beach

The photos below are copyright and belong to Elayne Hand, Brightchic Photography.

If you would like to purchase a print, feel free to contact me.

Safety Tips for Your Trip!

New Zealand is a beautiful country with amazing landscapes and beaches just waiting to be explored, by tourists and locals alike. Unfortunately,  people die and are injured every year in New Zealand, while exploring, having a fun holiday or day out. Poor judgement, lack of knowledge & complacency, more often that not, play a part in these deaths & injuries.

The weather & conditions in NZ are very changeable even in the summer. So it pays to be prepared for the worst, as the saying goes “Shit Happens” when you least expect it, a day trip can turn into an overnight trip, very easily.

So here are a few safety tips and advice I personally follow and carry, whenever I go out anywhere. Otherwise, I have similar gear that permanently lives in my vehicle, along with a few extra bits and pieces.

  1. Tell someone where you are going, what time you are leaving your home/accommodation and what time you hope to arrive back at home/accommodation. Say you will text or call, when you get back.
  2. Check the weather forecast/conditions. I use and find AccuWeather quite reliable. No weather forecast is 100%. Accu, gives you a lot of information, including cloud cover percentages, wind chill & rain information etc. If I am heading towards the coast I also check Surf-forcast.com  for the latest tidal information, such as high/low tide times, wave height, energy & wind. Lastly, I also take a look at the Department of Conservation, for information on track conditions, permits, wildlife etc.
  3. Know where you are going, write down directions, take a map, I don’t rely on my cell phone because coverage can be sketchy in places. Its is also very easy to lose, drop/break your phone.
  4. Dress for the conditions: take extra clothing & a first aid kit, including any medications you may need.
  5. Water & food, make sure you have enough, always take extra.

Here is a quick run down of what I have in my pack, all year around.

  1. First aid kit, I make my own, saves money and I get what I want in my kit including any medication.  Always have your first aid kit, accessible, don’t have it buried at the bottom of your pack or bag. I use a zip lock sandwich bag, which is also waterproof to keep it in.
  2. Clothing: pair of socks, rain poncho/rain jacket, hat, gloves, scarf & spare top.
  3. Emergency: sleeping bag & blanket (mylar or the like) tarpaulin (shelter) cordage, 2 x black plastic bags, (bags can be used for insulation. filled with leaves for example), torch (with spare batteries), fire kit, 1 litre water bottle, with cook mug, a knife/multi tool & compass. Sleeping on the bare ground for the night, isn’t a good idea, as the earth can sap a lot of your body heat, you need to have some form of insulation or be off the ground.
  4. Food: coffee, soup, energy bars, boil in the bag meal, can be eaten hot or cold.
  5. Personal hygiene kit: Baby wipes, hand sanitizer, toilet roll/tissues/handee towel, sunblock & insect repellent. (all are put in to small containers) except for sunblock and repellent.

Common sense plays a big part in what anyone chooses to do, or not do. People often see things differently, what is important to one, may not be to another.

Day Trips for the Uninspired: Manawatu Estuary and Foxton Beach, Horowhenua District, Manawatu Region

Gina and I have visited the Manawatu Estuary and Foxton Beach on a few occasions, at different times of the year. It takes about an hour to get there from Woodville and even less time from Palmerston North. Both locations are in close proximity to each other, so they make for a great day trip out. Directions on how to get there can be found, if you click on the links above.

The Manawatu Estuary is a wetland of international importance and 93 species of birds have been identified there. We have personally seen, Royal spoonbills, Black swans, Pukeko, Pied stilts, Variable oystercatchers and White fronted terns, just to name a few. So if you are an avid bird watcher this is the place for you.

Foxton Beach, like all beaches is a great place to visit winter or summer as there is always something different to see. Gina and I don’t need any excuse to go to the beach,  problem is, we don’t get there often enough.

On a whim, our last trip was in the evening, to watch the sunset, something we haven’t done before. So armed with a torch and cameras we set of, we arrived with minutes to spare and we were rewarded with an amazing sunset.

The torch came in handy though, as it went dark rather quickly and seeing as there is a lot of driftwood on the beach, it helps, if you can see where you are going.

I think we were the only two people left on the beach that night.  So after wandering around on the beach for a while in the dark, with the torch, we decided it was probably a good idea to head home.

Day Trips for the Uninspired: Apiti Glow Worm Cave: Limestone Creek Reserve, Manawatu Region

Apiti Glow Worm Caves: Limestone Creek Reserve.

If you decide to go and visit these Glow Worm Caves, which I might add are worth the trip. Make sure you have a full tank of gas before you venture out. So fill up in Feilding before you go, or you may have a long walk back. These caves are approximately 40km from Feilding.

Although, I did know what I was looking for I found searching for these caves online a bit confusing,  As my search came up with “The Iron Gates Experience” then I had to click on activities and attractions to find “Limestone Creek and Glow Worm Caves”.

There is  a lot of good and useful information on this site including directions but again hard to find, if you are generally browsing online and not sure what you are looking for.

Anyhow. now for the fun stuff, Gina & I visited the Glow Worm Caves in winter, now I am not suggesting anyone do this, like with any trip you make, you have to be prepared, warm clothing, towel, change of shoes, socks & wet weather gear etc.  Also you have to keep an eye on the water level.

We made our way down to the river via a pathway and through some native bush.  Then proceeded to walk up the river to the Glow Worm Cave. Wet feet, added to the experience. Outside the cave the walls of rock were covered with lichen, moss and ferns, with water trickling down onto them from above.

Inside the cave, the filtered sunlight highlighted the water trickling in from above, this is when the wet weather gear, really comes in handy.

We didn’t see any glow worms that day but  it was worth the visit all the same.

On the way home we encountered a slight holdup, two paradise ducks with their chicks, decided to hog the road, we did however move them along safely. I got out of the car while Gina drove and between us we herded them off the road.

All photos on this page are copyright @ Elayne Hand Brightchic Photography 2015

 

Welcome To Day Trips for the Uninspired: Covering, Manawatu, Palmerston North, Tararua, Wairarapa, Wellington and Hawke’s Bay Regions

Welcome To Day Trips for the Uninspired

My name is Elayne, I am a photographer, adventurer and dog trainer. Once a week my friend Gina & I, don on our tourist hats and seek out new places to visit.  Its not been easy but someone has to do it:-)

We both live in Woodville, a small town located in the Tararua District, which is part of the Manawatu-Wanganui Region.

The Manawatu-Wanganui Region covers a large area, stretching from Ruapehu right down to Horowhenua. Within the region are districts but ultimately they still all fall in under, the Manawatu-Wanganui Region.

I have personally chatted to tourists both on and offline as well as reading some of the travel sites and for many, Palmerston North is seen as a whistle stop destination, they stop at, on their way through to somewhere else.

Many are oblivious to the attractions and places they can visit, in and around the Manawatu.  Except maybe for the Manawatu Gorge Walk and the like and the Gorge walk isn’t for everyone.

After many hours of searching & talking to people from near and far.  I decided to put this blog of our day trips together. People including locals, often say to me “oh there’s nothing really to see or do,  around the Manawatu” and Palmerston North.

On the whole I believe the Manawatu Region has a lot to offer but has been clearly overlooked as a tourist destination, by many.

So down to business,  only places I have personally visited will be listed on this blog. Every places I visit will be listed here and will have its own page. There will be links to websites, photos and of course my personal views. I will also included information as to whether the location is wheelchair friendly. These trips, are what I consider low cost, in most cases, they will only cost you time and petrol as food and drink can be taken with you, as well as, your sense of adventure.

All photos on this site are copyright @ Brightchic Photography 2014