June's Sabbatical travel blog

Kia ora. Another early start. We had to meet our transfer coach for our day trip to Milford Sounds at 730 in the morning. The start of our journey was by coach,with many stops along the way. One lovely stop we made was at Te Apau where we had chance to stretch our legs and have a coffee. Another stop was at a mirror lake. This time we could see the mountains covered with the refreshed snow that had fallen the day before in the lake. So some lovely pictures were taken. Once we got toMilford Sounds we boarded the Milford Mariner for a cruise around the sounds, which are not really Sounds but fjords. We passed close to spectacular waterfalls and fur seals and saw a couple of bottle nose dolphins heading out to sea. We both took pictures (mostly of the sea) of the dolphins and then headed back for our dreaded small plane flight. Our twin engine plane was so tiny! There were eight of us on board with Jan and I unfortunately sitting in the centre which was great if you needed to get out fast but not so good from a viewing point of view. We have lots of pictures of the engines! It was a pretty bumpy ride (although there were some smooth bits) and we made it. Neither of us will ever do anything like that again though . but it was certainly an experience not to be forgotten! Back on terra firma we calmed ourselves with coffee and took a high speed water taxi into town. Our driver usually drives the excursion fast jet boats. So he treated us to the same thrills! We sat in town on the water side by a shed that produced the best fish and chips we have ever seen. I had smoked eel and chips and Jan had battered prawns. Fully battered we returned to our hotel again by water taxi.

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