Day 22 - Te Anou
14.03.2013 - 14.03.2013 17 °C
A bit of variety today. After learning that a new pope had been elected, we commenced with a team walk down to the jetty on Lake Te Anou just across from our hotel. Cruise across the western side of the lake to the Glowworm Caves. The caves are part of a 6.5 km, four level limestone system known as the Aurora Cave system. It is unusual because it has a very aggressive stream flowing through it and hence is growing in size. There isn't the sort of stalagmites or stalagmites found in older limestone caves so the Tunnel Burn (river) and glow worms are what they promote. Interesting being that far underground floating across a little lake in silence and in pitch black (apart from the star like glow of the fire flies above). Just a little too eerie for some!
Lunch in Te Anau before we again hit the road. Heading SE through the rolling slopes of cattle, sheep and deer farming country. We run along the Hokonui Hills and visited Gore, sister city to Tamworth and Country Music capital of NZ. Country music?? They have a giant brown trout and claim to be the world centre of same. Apparently it is a very low key festival.
The highway from Gore to Clinton has been officially titled the Presidential Highway. We saw the sign! Reputably there is another road to Clinton called the 'Lewinsky' - but that is another 'route'!! Boom Boom!!
We continued across to Balclutha before we again swung north up through Milton and Mosgiel and into Dunedin. A short time to have a quick walk around the streets of this historic (Scottish) university town before we settled in for another in-house banquet dinner. Known as the Edinburgh of the South - apparently Dunedin equates to the Gallic word for Edinburgh. University of Otago Student pranks keep the gendarmes busy. Home of the Dunedin Student Riots a couple of years ago. Latest stunt is couch burning. Most student rental houses have an old lounge out front for 'meditation' - of late the fire brigade has been complaining about call outs for couch fires! Hotel/Casino is very central. Hurricane rugby team and junior Fijians staying with us.