Marlborough - Waiheke | New Zealand
Marlborough - Waiheke | New Zealand
We say our trip was a tour of playgrounds, we could tell you what town across both islands had the best equipment for little ones. Pops was reluctant to go to wineries until she learned they all have a toy basket and Huia Winery even had chickens who flirted with coming inside! That may have been better than any of the playgrounds... toys and chickens, amazing service and wine for us?? Yes, please! The tasting room manager was so friendly and helpful and we loved the wines!
After a full day of Sauvignon Blanc we headed back to our hotel and the girls got in the pool with John, a little chilly but they had a blast! Peaches loved watching Pops dive down with her mask so as soon as Pops decided she was done and Peaches could have a turn there was no getting them away from her! Peaches is every bit of sweet and sass - corn is her favorite and mommucking everything she touches is her special talent. Here you can clearly see her insane bites from the flies in Punakaiki!
Pops loves playing with Peaches as long as Peaches is quiet and does what she says, imagine that. Pops was more than happy to pull her on the towel and toss her off as many times as Peaches would allow her to!
Once we left Marlborough, we headed to Kina Beach Winery, about 3 hours away. On our way there was a lovely lunch spot with tails and hats the kids could wear, big animals for them to climb on, a maze for the kids to run through, this large chess board and amazing food!
After lunch we went to the beach where it was all rocks just like the cliffs and they had trees growing down the side of them. Pops wanted some alone time with John so they took off on a walk, brought back the most gorgeous shells which made it into our car and stunk to high heaven for the rest of the trip!
Pops and John had a blast making "spoons" and other dinnerware from shells.
This is the gorgeous vineyard we stayed in, the netting goes over several rows at a time since they don't have to spray once they cover them in nets.
We rode the Interislander Ferry from the South Island back up to the North Island and there were 6 foot waves which I loved but made John a bit queasy. We met several families traveling together with young kids and had fun playing on the playground on board with them.
Once we got off the ferry in Picton we drove 5 hours up to Taupo passed Mount Doom, the volcano that is featured in Lord of the Rings.
When we reached Lake Taupo we were greeted with an amazing sunset!
We met back up with the Prices and hit another funfabulous playground, check this out, I wish we had these in the US!
And this spinner, can't beat it!
Except by this which you climb in and it spins you and spins you and spins you!
When we left we went by Huka Falls, which has the most water flowing at one time anywhere in New Zealand and we even got to see another rainbow!
We drove up to Waiheke Island which may have been my favorite place this whole trip. The beach was so calm and the ocean clear as could be. Boats would drive up and stay for the day and then go back to Aukland. The kids would jump off and swim in, everyone was so friendly, the sand was the perfect texture for amazing sand castles and there were lots of rocks for Pops to climb on and jump off of! Peaches played in little pools and made friends with some Argentinian kids.
The wineries were amazing, Cable Bay Winery had seating outside in bean bags all over the lawn overlooking the vineyards and ocean or you could sit inside and the kids ran around and made friends with everyone while the adults enjoyed conversation, food and wine.
Man O' War was exceptional, you could drive you boat up to the bay and walk up for a tasting or lunch, some people arrived via helicopter and others took the usual road which was most unusual. The journey down this gravel road was over mountains with stunning ocean views, the fields were speckled with sheep and horses and the sky was as blue as could be the day we went. The kids played by the water just feet from where the picnic tables were where there was food and wine service.
After a busy day we headed home for some coloring, books and naps. Pops, as always was more than ready for a snooze and Peaches went and hid not wanting to sleep. 2 totally different girls!
We went to Poppie's Winery in Martinborough and before we packed up to leave we had Poppy write herself a birthday note for when she's 21 and we can drink this with her. She wrote that when she's 21 she wants to be teaching horse back riding lessons.
The day we left we went to a haka at the Aukland Museum. Pops has seen them on rugby videos and was so excited to see one in person! She thinks their tongues hanging out and eyes protruding is fascinating! It's a dance they perform to show respect and at war.
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