Farewell to N Zealand
14.03.2010 - 15.03.2010 36 °C
'Packed in preparation for my flight to Auckland where I planned to meet up again with Catherine and Thomas. As my flight was not until 2:00 pm I had time on my hands so took a stroll round the Botanic Gardens; it was ideal as the skies were clear blue and it was a lovely day for a walk. The 25 hectares of gardens are well planned out around a steep hill with many dells. It has developed a lot since it was first set up in the early 1800’s; it now boasts an observatory and planetarium (now closed for refurbishment), and observation tree house, ornamental rose garden an outdoor auditorium and the usual facilities (cafes, restaurants, and play areas for children. It also has a cable car from the top which takes you to the centre of the city; I decided to take the table car down –quite an historic one, or rather two. Although they both shared the same line they had a passing area half way down. I walked along the waterfront; lot of people out and about – running/jogging, skateboarding, strolling, having a coffee, fishing or just admiring the sea and waves. There was an art exhibition on in the Michael Fowler Building which I went to view – it was put on by the artist in residency who was there himself to talk about his paintings. They were abstract style and expensive. I made my way back to the cable car and caught it to the top. I strolled back through the Botanic Gardens but I realised I was running sort of time before getting picked up by the airport shuttle so had to rush and just reached the hotel in time where the shuttle was waiting for me. I caught the flight to Auckland and met up with Catherine & Thomas. We left our luggage in storage and got a bus into the city. The driver advised us to take the ferry from where he dropped us to Davenport, which we did. It was a twelve minute crossing giving us a great view of Auckland from the bay. Davenport is a sleepy colonial town on a peninsula in the bay. We had a walk around and a meal before we returned. With time on our hands before our check-in at 2:00am next morning, we went to see a film, made our way back to the airport and killed some time. It was a tedious process as security checks did not start until 3:30; we boarded at 4:40 and though we had a smooth flight I found it difficult to sleep on the plane. A shuttle was waiting to take us to our hotel where we showered and freshened up. Though tired we decided not to sleep and go into Bandar Seri Bagawan (BSB), the main city of Brunei on the hotel shuttle. We planned to stay over in Brunei for the next three days.