© 2017 mikeandbrynne



Sunshine and a perfect beach day greeted us when we awoke. Mike made us quiche, pineapple and hash browns which we enjoyed overlooking the ocean before we packed up and cleaned the bungalow. 

The drive south to Christchurch was filled with fields of hay, pastures of sheep and amazing ocean views. We took a detour to Gore Bay and then stopped for lunch, a tramp and some tepee building in Manuka Bay– not a person in sight at this black sand beach with turquoise blue water. 

After sitting in the car the kids needed to exert some energy so we put them to the task of canoeing the Avon. Wet and picturesque, we got a flavor for this English town.

From “Britain” we set off for “Antarctica” at the International Antarctic Center. Since Jakes expedition to Antarctica a year ago we have all had our interest piqued in the southernmost continent. Shackleton, Scott and others set off on their expectations from New Zealand. We saw blue penguins, experienced an Antarctic storm and learned through multimedia exhibits.

Our final Christchurch adventure was to visit the new children’s park that had been built downtown. Christchurch had two brutal earthquakes in the last decade that the city has not recovered from. The scars are evident everywhere. It was fun to enjoy this brand new corner of the city that represents hope and resilience. Drew and Jake created obstacle courses through the park, Luke and Daisie climbed up and down slides and Tay and Lily jumped on the sweet in-ground trampolines while Mike went to get kebabs for everyone. 

Our home for the evening was south of the city on the Banks Pennisula overlooking the lake. What a beautiful location. We arrived just in time to see the last rays of sunlight dip into the lake below.