2016 first Segment

Picton, New Zealand

Early on February 4, 2016, we sailed into Queen Charlotte  Sound on the South Island of New Zealand and docked in the town of Piction. Picton is the gateway to the Marlborough Wine Country, which lies 28 kilometers away over some rolling hills and pasture land. We took a tour that went into the Wairau Plain, where all the vineyards of the region are located. We toured the area and stopped at two wineries, Spy Glass Winery and Forest Winery, where we toured each facility. After our tour, we went into the small town of Picton to walk around and enjoy the views of the harbor. We sailed out of...

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Auckland, New Zealand

February 2, 2016, found us docked next to the Ferry Terminal in downtown Auckland, New Zealand. We decided to visit Devonport, a village on the other side of  Waitemata Harbor, which is reached by a 10 minute ferry ride. Devonport is known for it’s heritage buildings dating back to the early 1800’s. Around the town there are two volcanic peaks, North Head, with views of the white sand beaches and out lying islands and Victoria Peak, with panoramic views of Auckland on the other side of the harbor. The Devonport Esplanade Hotel, invites people to Victoria Road, which is lined with...

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Waitangi (Bay of Islands), New Zealand

Our first stop in New Zealand was in the Bay of Islands at Waitangi on February 1, 2016. We anchored in the bay which is surrounded by 144 islands. We tendered into the Waitangi pier outside of the town of Paihia, and took a short shuttle ride into the town. Once there, we decide to take the ferry to the neighboring town of Russel, that was on the other side of the bay. Russell is a small quaint town with some of New Zealand’s oldest buildings. One building, The Duke of Marlbourgh Hotel, was New Zealand’s first licensed hotel and is where we ate lunch over looking Te Ti Bay....

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Rarotonga, Cook Islands

After a day at sea we arrived outside the port of Avarua on the island of Rarotonga in the Cook Islands on January 22, 2016. We were supposed to start tendering operations at 8:00 am but the swell outside the port was too rough to tender so the captain decided to sail to Arorangi with our tenders following us. At Arorangi, there is a narrow channel that the tenders can pass though to get to the pier on shore. At about 10:00 am we were in the first tender ashore. We had a 4 wheel drive excursion that would take us around the island, both around the magnificent shoreline and inland to the...

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Moorea, French Polynesia

After leaving Papeete at 5:30 am on January 24, 2016, we arrived and anchored in Opunohu Bay, in the island of Moorea at 8:00 am the same day. Today we took a four wheel drive tour of the island after tendering into Papetoai Village which was around a peninsula from where we were anchored. The trip started by going inland, through the Pineapple Fields, to the Opunohu Valley which is surrounded by all the major mountains of the island. After spending some time there, taking in the views, we went to the Belvedere Lookout, that over looks both main bays, Opunohu Bay on the left and Cooks Bay on...

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Papeete, Tahiti, French Polynesia

We docked in the town of Papeete on the island of Tahiti on January 23, 2016. We would be here overnight but would leave at 5:30 am the next morning. The ship docks literally in town as can be seen by the Craft Market image. We just strolled through the town winding up at the local market called Le Marche where goods from produce and fish to handicrafts, clothing and handmade flower leis were sold. In the evening the culinary department on the ship had a Polynesian BBQ complete with suckling pig. Later that night we were treated to Tahiti Ora, a local Polynesian dance group. The thumbnail...

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