kiwi kapers

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Among the grasslands on New Zealand’s South Island west and southern coastlines, they lie in ambush for their human quarry. Swarms so thick they dull the colour of the air in a dark fog. As soon as an unsuspecting tourist steps into the open air, they mercilessly attack in a feasting frenzy. New Zealand sandflies dive-bomb in fleets latching onto bare skin seemingly munching chunks of flesh ....Continue Reading >>
Churches have a habit of being built on the most prime land in a town or city – on top of a hill or on the main square. The petite Church of Good Shepherd commands picture-postcard views across the glacial waters of Lake Tekapo to New Zealand’s highest mountains and represents the first church in the area. Its striking turquoise blue-green colour (from suspended glacial rock dust or rock ....Continue Reading >>
Driving through the verdant Waitaki Valley from the Victorian elegance of Oamaru towards the New Zealand high peaks, we think little of the weathered honeycomb-hued cliffs that dot the roadside among the lush pastoral farmlands. A handful of small villages break the flow of farms. With a tiny one cell jail (complete with stocks – was Duntroon a really lawless place?) and an active blacksmith ....Continue Reading >>
On the cobbled junction of Harbour and Tyne Streets, you are cast back to a time where horse and cart and penny farthings ruled the roads. Oamaru’s harbour precinct is packed with a wealth of late-1800s Victorian neo-classical buildings ornately carved from creamy Oamaru limestone. Streets full of elegant symmetric public buildings line the streets complete with Greek columns, fancy porticoes ....Continue Reading >>
Am I stuck in a time warp? Men sitting bolt upright steadily pedalling their penny farthings while women in voluminous skirts chatter of local life in elegant tea rooms. Life among the creamy Oamaru whitestone (a kind of limestone) buildings, north of Dunedin on New Zealand’s South Island has a feel of a life museum. Today these wonderful Victorian building have been revived as art galleries, ....Continue Reading >>
Around 70 kilometres north of the elegant city of Dunedin (with its hexagonal city centre, castle and albatross nesting area) is one of nature’s more unusual travel wonders. As if walking into a giant’s game of marbles, huge spherical rocks are randomly scattered over Koekohe Beach. Unlike typical stones eroded smooth by the pounding oceans and coastal winds, the Moeraki Boulders (or Kaihinaki ....Continue Reading >>
Standing tall in commanding grandeur atop Otago Peninsula (also home to the royal albatross) is the regal Larnach Castle, the only castle in the Southern Hemisphere. Unconnected to royalty, the castle was built by a highly successful Australian-born merchant and banker and Kiwi politician, William Larnach to impress his French nobility wife and house his six children. No expense was spared utilising ....Continue Reading >>
As a sightseeing train, the Taieri Gorge Train carves and rollicks its way over 130 year old iron viaducts and through spectacular plunging gorges and verdant farming lands, reliving trips that first started in the 1870s.It departs from palatial Dunedin Railway Station which perches on the edge of town in resplendent black and white stone, surrounded by elegant gardens and crowned with ....Continue Reading >>
New Zealand is home to the world’s steepest street. In the delightfully Scottish-influenced city of Dunedin on the South Island, Baldwin Street obtains a slope of 19 degrees or 35 percent (that is, travel 2.86 metres for a one metre vertical rise). Over 161 metres, the street rises 47 metres in height. Joggers exercise on the street every day while it is a serious test of car brakes.Proudly ....Continue Reading >>
Complete with a lighthouse and guns to protect New Zealand from invading Russians in the late 1800s, Taiaora Head is the only mainland breeding colony of the superb Royal Albatross in the world. With around the clock protection from predators, a few dozen breeding pairs lay a lone egg every couple of years hatching in January. For eight months, the lone chick sits in their nest awaiting the ....Continue Reading >>
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Welcome to Travel Wonders

My name is Mark and I’m a keen traveller. In fact, over the last 25 years, I’ve travelled to every continent and over 80 countries. This blog is about the most memorable destinations – the places I regard as the travel wonders of the world. I’m also a keen photographer, and have taken nearly all the photos you’ll see. During my travels, I’ve met some incredible people, seen inspiring places, viewed extraordinary wildlife and scenery and had some amazing experiences, and I’m writing these stories not only to entertain but primarily to inspire others to discover their own travel wonders.

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