OT? New Zealand trip

SWMBO & I are planning a trip to NZ sometime next year and in an attempt to balance out her choice of scenic locations to visit, I'd welcome
suggestions of 'must see' locations for an engineer/scientist/woodbutcher like myself and like most readers of this NG.
Suggestions please (polite or at least humourous naturally!)
Weblinks to events too would be good. visit is possible next November or just maybe sooner - next February.
TIA
Bob
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On Oct 28, 11:49am, Bob Minchin

NZ is a fantastic place and if I was forty years younger I would move there, if I had a skill they needed!
Lots of places to see that fit your bill but I think that the South Island Manapouri power station in a mountain is the place I found most impressive. http://www.realjourneys.co.nz/Main/Powerstation /
The trip we took was across Lake Manapouri, then down 1.5k inside the mountain to the power station (by coach!) then a coach to Doubtful Sound fijord with a cruise through the spectacular mountain scenery to the mouth of the fijord and then back the way we had come. I think it is more interesting place than the better known Milford Sound.
The other South Island spectacular I would mention is the TranzAlpine railway trip across the island - stunning scenery and civil engineering. http://www.tranzscenic.co.nz/?gclid=CKvm4IerjKwCFUoY4QodKUF2mA
If you are into historic aircraft you might be interested in the Mosquito that is being restored in Auckland http://www.mosquitorestoration.com /
I hope you are allowing yourselves plenty of time for this trip - you wont be bored.
John H
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On 10/29/2011 7:20 AM, John H wrote:

NZ has a lot of flying condition restored warbirds , and they have an airshow at Wanaka every year.Not sure of the dates ,but "Google Wings over Wanaka."
Trout fishing is exceptional if you are into fishing . Self drive camper holidays are very popular as well.
--
Kevin (Bluey)
"I'm not young enough to know everything."
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One other thing I forgot that Kevin's post reminded me about is the accomodation options for travellers - motor homes are seen everywhere but if you want a bit more comfort go for the motels. There is free book available from the tourist info offices etc, about as thick as a Screwfix catalogue, with motels all over NZ. We never booked more than a day in advance and mostly rang on the day we were going to arrive; and we didn't end up sleeping in the car!
John H
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wrote:

It's not often a question comes up here that I can offer much help on, but I do know something about this one. What sort of thing are you looking for? Modern engineering feats, industrial archiology, historic sites, operating steam trains? What areas are you planning to visit? There is some industrial history here, but obviously nothing like the UK. The main industries here, historically, were timber, mining (gold & coal mainly) and farming.
Here are a few links to get you started
http://www.nzwood.co.nz/case-studies/percy-burn-viaduct#next http://www.drivingcreekrailway.co.nz/Introduction.cfm http://www.nzherald.co.nz/travel/news/article.cfm?c_id=7&objectid 721560 http://www.nzherald.co.nz/travel/news/article.cfm?c_id=7&objectid 721765
Regards Kevin
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Kevin wrote:

Thanks Kevin, I'm working my way through the links that you and others have sent in this NG and UK.d-i-y MOTAT looks like a top choice
Bob
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I can recommend MOTAT too, and the timber logging/Kauri museum in Matakohe if you are going north from Auckland.
Richard
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Richard Shute wrote:

Richard, Is there much else to see/do near the timber logging/Kauri museum in Matakohe? I'm having a bit of difficulty justifying the journey North of Auckland to SWMBO just for that museum. Bob
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I suppose an honest answer would be 'not very much' other than the general semi-tropical Northland. But it is somewhat in the 'wrong direction' if you are intending start in Auckland and probably end up in Christchurch via Wellingon.
I lived in the far north in the Bay of Islands for a couple of years so if we were taking the long route to Auk. it was easy enough to go past.
If you are driving, beware of the anonymous, unmarked, mobile radar speed traps. With only a pedestrian 100kph limit I collected a lot of tickets!
Cheers Richard
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Bob, one other detail if you are driving. There is a very un-intuitive road rule implementatin of 'Giveway to the Right'. If you are about to turn left and ON coming triffic wants to turn to his right down the same road as you, you GIVE WAY to him. It feels very odd sitting in a main road to give way to oncoming turning traffic!
I'm used to driving on the Continent and in the US and in general you can just mirror the home rules, but this is unique and I had a few near misses while living in NZ because of it.
Richard
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Richard Shute wrote:

Hmm! That sounds a weird one!
I'll watch out for that. Presumably if I'm wanting to go straight on, I don't have to give way to traffic wanting to turn across my path from my right?
Bob
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Bob, yes, that's correct. You give way only if you are turning left and the other guy is turning right.
Richard
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Depending when you come you won't need to worry about that. The rule is being scrapped at 5am on March 25th next year. About time too, it's a bloody ridiculous rule -shame they didn't get it done in time for the World cup as I'm sure lots of visitors get confused by it. It is particularly tricky when a car coming the other way stops for you to turn right, then just as you are about to turn the car behind them comes past at high speed!
Regards Kevin
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Kevin wrote:

Thanks for the heads up on that one Kevin. We are coming in November '12 now so hopefully the local will have adjusted to the new ways by then.
Bob
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wrote:

MOTAT is a good museum, but obviously not on the same scale as someof the UK industrial museums. It is on two sites with a tram running in between, it's near the zoo http://www.aucklandzoo.co.nz/ so perhaps you could appease the other half with a day out with half a day at each. Worth keeping an eye on their web site closer to your visit as they often have special exhibitions on http://www.motat.org.nz/ I can understand your difficulty justifying a trip north of Auckland just to see the Kauri museum http://www.kauri-museum.com but there is another timber museum -seems to be a bit more industrial, but unfortunately was closed when I was in the area. It is down towards Taupo so may fit in with heading south http://www.putarurutimbermuseum.co.nz / Check the web site to see if it is open again before you visit. If you could time the visit for when they were open this could be interesting too http://www.bushtramwayclub.com /
Regards Kevin
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