Riverton – white baiting, rivers and beach walks

boats in the port of riverton

I love Riverton.  Gorgeous coastal town near the bottom of the South Island and practically nearly completely opposite Invercargill – well it seems like it anyway.

port of riverton

A little fishing port so complete with river, river inlet, sea views and gorgeous beaches.

oreti beach invercargill

When on the Oreti Beach at Otatara on the outskirts of Invercargill (where I’m from) if you get the tides right you can walk all the way to Riverton.  Would take you quite some time and there would be some river crossings but that is a pretty cool thing to say you’ve done.  Unfortunately despite the fact I hail from Invercargill (and Otatara at that!), I can’t lay claim to having done it.  Might have to invest in a fat bike and take a little bike ride…..

huts on bank of Aparima river near Riverton

Generally for us, a trip down south wouldn’t be complete without taking the drive to Riverton but this was one time, come our last day we hadn’t done it.  We’d been busy hiking, biking and other sightseeing.  BUT….. on running into an old school friend of Stephens and making mention of the white baiters we had seen earlier in the week she said you can’t go past a trip to Riverton – well that was all the excuse we needed.

white bait huts reflecting in aparima river

line up of white bait huts with views to riverton

She was right (thanks Wendy).  The huts and stands were lining the river and it was just as spectacular as our experience with the Mataura River.  Another beautiful day so we were again afforded some fabulous reflections of the huts, stands and trees in the water.

characters aparima river

jetboat on the white bait river

Stephen took a walk to get closer to the action and got chatting with a couple of the locals.  Turns out one of them was married to a “coaster” and Stephen knew the family well – classic, we’re about 800 odd kms from home – what is that saying regarding 6 degrees of separation….

riverton beach

The boys have been very patient with us so it is only fair we head into Riverton and out to the beach for a run.

flying high riverton beach

and run they do – or it is fly………

Ziggy singing Riverton beach

or sing, sing a song, sing it loud, sing it strong – while Nico looks on in mild amusement.

Another lovely afternoon – thanks Riverton, good to be back.

Jan and Stephen run Breakers Boutique Accommodation on the Great Coast Road north of Greymouth on the West Coast of the South Island (yes that mouthful again).  They enjoy getting out and about exploring and sharing their discoveries and adventures.


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Nine Mile Beach Great Coast Road – Home

rocky beach nine mile great coast road

Hello, hello, It’s good to be back its good to be back, hello, hello, its good to be back, hello, hello

sunset off nine mile beach with driftwood

Back from our trip away down to Southland to visit with family and friends and what a welcome we came home to

sunset off the rocks nine mile beach

a stunning sunset off the rocks on Nine Mile beach.

crazy clouds and skies on sunset nine mile beach

Two nights in a row too – although second night not quite a sunset but definitely a stunning sky with some crazy clouds and colours thanks to a brewing storm.

Nico enjoying nine mile beach

Even Nico was happy to be back on the beach – as much as he loved all his adventures there isn’t anything quite like home.

crazy skies on sunset nine mile beach

Hello, hello I’m back again I’m back, I’m back I’m on the right track Hello, hello

rocky beach nine mile Great Coast Road

Tell all of your friends I’m back, I’m back, as a matter of fact As a matter of fact, I’m back……

Jan and Stephen run Breakers Boutique Accommodation on the Great Coast Road north of Greymouth.  The Great Coast Road was named one of the top ten coastal drives in the world by Lonely Planet and they together with their faithful dogs Nico and Ziggy are lucky enough to call it home.


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Invercargill Estuary Walk

sea scout clubrooms stead street wharf invercargill

This is a relatively new walk to Invercargill. I say new – perhaps more new to me since growing up here as a kid – I suspect it has been here longer than I realise……

stead street wharf and sea scout clubrooms invercargill

It starts at the old Stead Street wharf with a car park by the Jellicoe Sea Scouts clubroom and you can either go towards town or towards Bluff. We were taking the towards Bluff option.

old stead street wharf invercargill

There was not a breath of wind so we were afforded some great reflections of the old wharf in the water.  The tide was slowly coming in.

others enjoying invercargill estuary walk

This is a walking and cycle trail and we are passed by runners, bikers, other walkers with their dogs and parents out with the young ones in the push chairs all making the most of the lovely sunny morning.

walk along invercargill estuary track

history panels invercargill estuary walk

The 4.7km loop track begins by following the edge of the Estuary with information points along the way. The history of the area is quite fascinating with one photo showing the busy port with all the boats coming in and another photo showing it was known as “pleasure bay lagoon” popular for swimming and relaxing in the sun.

all smiles invercargill estuary walk

Mother and daughter enjoying a stroll.

walking along invercargill estuary track

Before the loop winds its way around to come back on itself there is a rest stop complete with shelter where a young couple on their bikes take in the peace and tranquility of the ducks and swans out on the lagoon of the estuary.

boardwalk invercargill estuary walk

meandering boardwalk invercargill estuary walk

Then there the most fantastic board walk to get across the lagoon safely. There are warning signs that in extreme tides or weather the boardwalk may not be passable. We can see why as with the tide coming in even slowly the water is already rising up under the boardwalk – it would be impressive to see at high tide.

boardwalk over estuary invercargill

There are numerous swans and ducks out on the water enjoying the safety of the location.

invercargill estuary walk

We’re now on the other side of the estuary following the bank of the lagoon with railway line to the other side of us.  We just missed a train going passed – would have made a great photo but we were too busy chatting so you’ll just have to trust me that it looked really cool…….

walking invercargill estuary track

Times change as industry grows but it is nice to have this area reclaimed and now utilised again for recreation.  This is a very relaxing walk and lovely asset for the town.

sea scout and stead street wharf

History walk and exercise all in one.  Back to the old wharf and the car park – just in time for lunch.

Jan and Stephen run Breakers Boutique Accommodation on the Great Coast Road north of Greymouth on the West Coast of the South Island.  Whew that is a mouthful!  They enjoy getting out and about and exploring and sharing their discoveries and adventures.

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White baiting Southland Style

track to white bait huts

White baiting starts earlier on the East Coast than the West Coast so it was really cool taking a drive out in the country on our recent visit down south to come across the hopefuls out on the river.

white bait huts lining river

I say out on the river – they were lining the river banks on both sides.

reflections white baiters

We were taking a drive to the Catlins – to view the Waipapa Point lighthouse to be precise and came around a corner on route to cars lining the roadside by the river and white bait stands and huts lining the river edge.

white baiters mataura river

It was a sight to behold – almost a little unreal with so many stands and huts almost as far as the eye could see as the river wound its way towards the ocean.

white bait stands on the river

It would have been rude not to stop and take a little walk to get a bit closer.  The river was so calm giving wonderful reflections of the stands.

white bait huts and stands on the river

We had Mum with us and she stopped to talk to a couple of the locals trying their hand at the white baiting and in typical NZ style they knew my Grandpop and my Aunty and Uncle who used to live near by (anything within the vicinity of 100kms is near by) – so classic.

line up white bait huts

As the river meandered round through the paddocks so did the stands – don’t think I’ve ever seen so many huts along a river edge.

stands and huts on mataura river

While it was tempting to stay and relax a while with these hopeful souls, we had a destination to reach.

mataura river mouth at fortrose

In saying that we stopped in Fortrose, the official start of the Catlins and this is where the mouth of the river meets the Pacific Ocean.

white baiters near fortrose

There were more white baiters here on the beach of the river trying their hand with the little swimmers too.

It was a picture perfect day to be out with family and friends, sharing a story or two and soaking up the surroundings.

Waipapa lighthouse

For us though it was time to continue on our adventure to the lighthouse…….

Jan and Stephen run Breakers Boutique Accommodation on the Great Coast Road north of Greymouth on the West Coast.  They enjoy getting out and exploring as much of this beautiful country as possible.  Time – we just need more time…….

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Mountain biking Bluff Hill, Southland

enjoying the views Bluff hill trails

I’m not bluffing (sorry!) when I say the riding at Bluff is a must do.

The local mountain bike club have made the most of the forestry area heading up the infamous Bluff Hill with a network of trails.

forest section bluff hill mountain bike trail

Almost a hidden secret if you don’t know about them as there are no signs directing the way to get you started.

There is a map available though so make sure you call in at the local bike shop in Invercargill or the I-site and keep on hand to find your starting point – and your way around the tracks.

forestry ride bluff hill mtb track

Us though, well we left the map at home – just to add to our adventure.  That’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it!  Going on our memory from riding here previously and then just following our noses to see where we were led……

bluff hill mountain bike trais

Huff, puff, we’re biking up Bluff

forest views bluff hill mountain biking

Huff and puff, pedal, pedal, twist and turn as we wind our way up the hillside.

forest ride bluff hill

Up and over little rocky outcrops, twist and turn through the forest and up the hill.

views bluff hill mountain bike trails

and then down…….

riding the rocks bluff mountain bike track

could this be it, we’re reached the top of the trail, time for some downhill fun.

downhill to views bluff hill tracks

The trail does almost a figure eight.  The top of the downhill section has some fun gnarly rocky outcrops to negotiate, a good test of skill for just enough brake when needed, picking the right line, bouncing down with a slight grimace that soon turns to a wide grin!

bluff hill mountain bike trails and views

Off the rocks and into swooping down through the pine trees with fab views out over Bluff township before coming to a newly logged section that just opens out as the trail continues to work its way round and down the hill.

views bluff hill mountain bike ride

The views just get better and better – Bluff harbour out to Tiwai Smelter and then opening out to the Pacific Ocean – gorgeous.

Soon we pop onto the Pearce Street track that leads us back to our car.  With big grins and slightly achy arms we load the car – thanks Bluff hill, great ride – no bluffing!

Jan and Stephen run Breakers Boutique Accommodation on the Great Coast Road north of Greymouth on the West Coast.  They enjoy getting out and about exploring the West Coast and as much of the South Island as they can.  Currently visiting Invercargill in the south – a chance to explore something new.

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Dunedin Street Art – a Walk Around Dunedin City

Maori Marai Dunedin street art

taking photos Dunedin street art Dunedin alley way

On a recent visit to Dunedin our friends recommended a walk around the city streets to check out the street art.

Scarfies Dunedin Street Art

University Students Dunedin street Art

This is one of my favourites as I’m sure I recognise some of these people!  lol

Scarfies near Speights Dunedin Street Art

This is all on a wall just before an entrance to a gated car park.

smiling lady dunedin street art

man in purple dunedin street art

Dunedin has a rich history in the arts so it is great to see this initiative to brighten the skyline and make use of some of the unused wall space.

vacant dress dunedin street art

cafe street art

Many local and international artists have made the most of this opportunity as has the local Dunedin District Council with a Dunedin Street Art Trail being produced complete with map and brief description of each artist and their chosen piece of work.

music of life dunedin street artmachine horse dunedin street art

It is a great way to see the city and open ones eyes to not just the street art but the many beautiful buildings that Dunedin city has and even some of their alley ways.

music alley dunedin street art

Next time you’re in Dunedin or if you’re looking at adding it to your itinerary, make sure you allow time to take a walk around to check out the street art trail .

girl spilling paint dunedin street art

children spray painting dunedin street art

painting children dunedin street art

I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

first kiss dunedin street art

Jan and Stephen run Breakers Boutique Accommodation on the Great Coast Road north of Greymouth.  They enjoy getting out and exploring the West Coast but also seeing other parts of the South Island whenever they can.

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Biking on the Straight and Narrow…..

Hoki to Ross cycleway

Out on our bikes at the weekend making the most of the gorgeous weather.

Mahinapua walkway

Beautiful start along the Mahinapua Walkway just south of Hokitika.

This is going to be part of the West Coast Wilderness Trail.  Gorgeous scenery and lots of history.

green of Mahinapua walkway

Nice and easy through the forest – and reasonably straight and flat.

mountain views west coast wilderness trail

But not as straight and flat as the next section of biking we did.

straights of Ross cycleway

Straight as straight as straight is straight

along west coast wilderness trail

Did I mention straight……

historic bridge totara river

Will be lovely when finished with lots of bridges to cross over creeks and ending with one fantastic historic bridge across the Totara River near Ross at the end.

It will be a majestic sight to see.

ross to hoki west coast wilderness trail

For now though – back to straight as straight as straight is straight to get back to the start.

pretty creek west coast wilderness trail

bridge wilderness trail cycle trail

Final stop to view one of the pretty creeks and back in need of a little stretch.

Now for the straight drive home……

Jan and Stephen run Breakers Boutique Accommodation on the Great Coast Road north of Greymouth.  They enjoy getting out and about and exploring the many things there are to see and do on the West Coast.

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