Posted by: maureenc | May 17, 2017

Another New Zealand port

The “Radiance” departed Picton wharf about 7pm on a fairly calm sea. Having heard stories over the years of how rough the passage through Cook Strait can be, I wondered how the evening would progress.

According to Wikipedia:

Cook Strait lies between the North and South Islands of New Zealand. It connects the Tasman Sea on the northwest with the South Pacific Ocean on the southeast, and runs next to the capital city, Wellington. It is 22 kilometres (14 mi) wide at its narrowest point,[1] and is considered one of the most dangerous and unpredictable waters in the world.[2]

The strait is named after James Cook, the first European commander to sail through it, in 1770.

Map of Cook Strait, New Zealand

Once again, we were blessed with peaceful cruising and the following morning, as our ship dawdled towards  Lambton Quay to dock, we crossed paths with an -“Inter-islander”  Ferry heading out towards Picton, some three hours  away.

Inter island ferry leaving Wellington

When I last visited Wellington (also on a cruise) I spent most of the day visiting Zealandia and the Museum of New Zealand (Te Papa Tongarewa), so this time I decided to ride the Cable car and enjoy the sights of Wellington from the lookout and tea rooms at Kelburn Park.

Cable car

 The cable-car coming up to Kelburn

Looking down towards the city from the lookout

Adjoining the Cable car station was the Wellington Botanic Garden which incorporates over 26 hectares comprising

the Lady Norward Rose Garden with over 3000 different species of roses; a sculpture trail featuring , among others, Henry Moore’s Bronze Form; a Duck pond; a Begonia House.

As my camera battery “died” at this stage, the Botanic Garden remains on my bucket list! Cruising  is a wonderful way to visit new places, but it’s only an appetiser or teaser: so much to see and so little time!

It was about 4pm we said farewell to Wellington to head north and east towards French Polynesia.

Departing Wellington






  1. It’s hard to imagine that calm and lovely place being dangerous, but I’m glad it was peaceful for you. I’d like the cable car and the museum. I’ve always thought that a cruise would be frustrating for me with such short time in amazing places!

  2. It can be very frustrating, trying to see so much in such a short time and made worse by losing my notes and written descriptions!! lol

  3. The crossing was smooth for us when we were there in 2001. A fabulous country and far too much to see in one month but all beautiful.
    Bad luck about the camera and notes.


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