Wednesday, Jan 27, 2016
There was a cold spell in the Kingston area and the temperature was quite cool and damp at night, however we survived the night and when I crawled out of my tent, it was still quite cool ( 11 C, 52 F ) and damp.
We skipped breakfast in order to have brunch in Allentown. I was told that they have the “ World’s Best Pies “ so I was looking forward to having a piece of pie with a cup of coffee.
New Zealand is has a lot of Cafe’s. They have almost as many cafes as our area has Tim Horton’s coffee shops. However ,there coffee is always freshly ground and the selections are primarily speciality coffee’s, such as espresso, latte, mocha, cappuccino, etc. If you want an American-style coffee, they brew one or two espresso shots and then dilute them with hot water.
We drove around along the winding roads next to the mountains until we reached Allentown. Allentown is a quaint little town with a lot of small shops in the downtown area. We parked the car and walked down main street until I saw these chocolates in one of the shops.
New Zealand is known for their fine chocolates and I wanted to support their business so I had to buy a dark, New Zealand chocolate bar with almonds. It was a tough decision, but it was one that I was able to make.
We continued on down to a small cafe at the end of the main street to have breakfast. Cheryl had a tea and a slice of vegetarian pie and I had a latte and a breakfast panini and we topped off our meal by splitting a slice of Boysenberry cheesecake; another sacrifice! We asked the waitress about the ” World’s Best Pies ” and we were told that they were in the store next door. We had initially stopped in that store but opted not to eat there because there was no place to sit down. After breakfast we went to the bake shop and I bought a hot and spicy chicken pie, as well as, a custard and Cheryl bought a chicken “ football “. We planned to have them for a late lunch in the afternoon.
This is a view from the end of the street.
We left Allentown and headed toward Wanataka. As we climbed the first mountain, we had a good view of Allentown, seen on the right in this photo.
We then continued the winding route through the mountains until we arrived at Wanaka. Wanaka is a tourist town. It is well manicured, has a beautiful lake,
and it has many stores and accommodations.
We looked at the weather forecast and since it was indicating rain and cool for the following day, we continued on to Haast for the night. The road from Wanaka to Haast goes past two Lake Hawea and Lake Wanaka. Both give beautiful views of the lakes with the mountains in the background.
A few minutes north of Makarora, there is a short walk through NZ beech forest across a swing bridge,
to a glacial blue water pool.
A little further down the road we stopped to look at Fantail Falls,
and Thunder Creek Falls,
When we finally reached Haast, we stopped at the visitors information centre, where they informed us that the road to Jackson Bay had been completely washed out the day before and there was no access to get there. We had planned to go to Jackson Bay the following day, however, we would now have to change our plans. We continued on to a camp ground near Haast, checked in and set up camp.
There isn’t much available in Haast, including cell phone service, however, we were able to get wifi at the campsite. We had our meals that we had purchased in Allentown for a late dinner and then we planned the next leg of our trip.
It was cool in the evening and it rained a little, but it was much warmer than it had been in Kingston.