One of the things that winds me up or stresses me for some strange reason, is catching ferries with Rafe (or like the Chunnel with Ralph). I think its just having to be somewhere at a certain time and usually involves waking up to an alarm early too but its always fun and interesting.
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The check in time for our Bluebridge ferry was 7am and we were there at 06:30. We were first!
Around 7.30, we were pointed towards the ferry and parked up with some other Motorhomes and went upstairs. As I left Rafe, I clicked on the handbrake but thought later, possibly not as hard as I could have but I needn’t have worried. It was in gear and the sea was calm.
Upstairs in the lounge, we sat down and I ordered Bacon and Eggs for us both, which was good as getting up early, we hadn’t had any breakfast. It was one of those superb Wellington days as we left the harbour.
As we got around and into Cook Strait, the wind was blowing nearly 30 knots from the North West. The sea was still calm. Yep, the handbrake thingy did cross my mind but then the sea was flat as a pancake.
I went for a walk around the ship as we nearing the Tory Channel and there were a couple of girls up on the Observation deck trying to get pictures of each other in the wind. It was hilarious.
Getting into the Tory Channel and everyone came out on the observation deck as the wind had dropped right off.
We were in Picton early and when I got back to Rafe, I found that I had in fact put the handbrake on properly and had no need to even think about it 🙂 just my imagination ! Its like putting the keys somewhere daft and how often do we all do that.
With the usual Bluebridge efficiency, we were off the ferry with ease and on our way to Blenheim.
For our last night in Wellington before the ferry, we thought it would be sensible to get a bit closer to avoid the weekday traffic with our early check in being 7am at the Bluebridge terminal.
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The NZMCA App screamed out the Petone Club as a good place to be and we cruised in the late morning to this massive park.
There’s plenty of room to park and they’re very obliging and helpful. They have a Buffet going for lunch and dinner and you’re very welcome in the bar. Just remember to take your NZMCA card with you.
The parking area is huge and all sealed. The power is a bit awkward as it is all in a bunch of 4 plugs right next to the entrance to the Motorhome parking area so its throw your leads over the fence.
Our lead was just long enough to reach but it all works and for $10 a night, a fantastic place to stop. There are also toilets and a shower that can be used too.
We went for walk down to the local Pak N Save for some basics, which is about 20 minutes walk away.
Later in the day, we invited our next door neighbours over for a drink. John and Margaret hail from Masterton and were staying in Wellington. After a pleasant hour with them, we went into the Petone club for a spectacular tea for $9.50 each and a Sticky Date pudding.. Yum! All washed down with a huge $7 glass of chardy.. also Yum!
Some of our china plates that we bought a few years ago in Oamaru that we use in Rafe, had deteriorated. Fiona had managed to find some new ones the same sort and colour on Trade Me so on the way south, we had to pick these up in Porirua.
This time she got a Teapot, 6 of each, cups and saucers, small side plates, bigger side plates, bowls and dinner plates all for $190 !! ..
After getting the China, we headed straight for the new Plimmerton NZMCA park and it looks fantastic. There had been a working bee on ealier and it was pretty busy. I counted over 40 Buses and Motorhomes there.
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The new Dump Station looks great in the middle and its really handy to the Railway Station. A great spot.
We called our son Alex who is currently working in Wellington amnd he popped out for tea. The next morning, we got up early and caught the train into Wellington City. Its an easy walk from the park and only takes 25 minutes and then we walked around to a French cafe for brunch.
The shed and the Iron maiden
View from over by the Railway Station
Wellington Railway Station
Inside the station
Alex met us at the cafe, then we went for a walk around the city. Very pleasant.,
Alex later dropped us off at Rafe in Plimmerton and stopped for a cup of coffee and then headed home.
I’m impressed with this park and have to say, the crew here have done a great job with it. Fiona was keen to stay a third night but as I’d booked an early ferry during the week, I thought we might be better closer in for our last night with the early morning weekday traffic.
A nice park and I’m sure it is going to be well used and enjoyed by many.
In Wellington, I received a message from my old friend (and work colleague and Motorhomer) Grant suggesting that we should go and check out the Roxy Theatre in Miramar.
Click on the images to see Hi Res or a slideshow As it was only a few K’s away from our base at Evans Bay, we set out to check it out and it’s a thing of beauty.
Owned jointly by Richard Taylor and Jamie Selkirk of Weta Workshop fame, it is simply stunning. They’ve owned it for quite a long time but due to their work commitments with the movie industry, they had to put the renovation job on hold until a few years ago.
It was once a shopping centre so it has been a big do up job.
The Cafe and Shop
Some of the art
Upstairs with the ceiling
There is a really nice cafe on the ground floor but the decor and attention to detail with old movie cameras, the art and a huge ceiling mural is just stunning.
In the middle of Miramar shops, it’s something you must check out.
The Weta cave is at the other end of Park ave, which is also worth visiting too. There is easy Motorhome parking in the surrounding streets so easy to get there. Thanks Grant for telling us about it.
On Sunday morning a chap from Wellington City popped around in the Evans Bay Marina car park, with his clipboard. He was checking the CSC stickers for parking compliance. For those offshore, this is the self containment with black and grey water.
Gary had a natter to him and he mentioned that the parking area was being reviewed. They’re thinking of moving it “up the “coast” which to me sounds like ‘out of town’.
One if the nice things about Evans Bay is its location and closeness to Wellington City.
There is also a dump station, toilets and water and a fantastic view.
I have to say though, Wellington definitely have more than their share of boy racers and people with sirens.
All in all though, it’s a great spot and it would be a real shame to lose it.