Did I mention that we bought a cooler bag when we stopped for groceries? Well, we did and we placed it in the amazing compartment that is above the spare tire in the back of our amazing vehicle. Unfortunately, we forgot about physics. You know, the part where ice cools the air around it and, if there isn’t an insulator, the cool air will make the air in your air mattress cool if it happens to be placed above it. No wonder we were freezing last night. Added bonus, our body heat melted most of the ice. Thanks again, physics.
After breakfast and stretching, we were on the road for Wellington. Driving past Tongariro was an impressive reminder that New Zealand is an active and ever-changing landscape. We had originally planned to do the famous Tongariro Crossing, which is a full day hike, but decided against it in the interest of time. It reamains on the bucket list.
We arrived in Wellington around 4 pm and made a beeline for the National Museum. Hoping to learn more about the history of the culture, we spent most of our time wandering around the Maori section. Happily, we stumbled on a large exhibit about a treaty with England signed by over 40 Maori chiefs on February 6, 1840. No wonder the city was so jammed–it’s a three-day summer weekend for New Zealanders!
Wellington is fantastic, folks. Highly recommend. We spent the majority of our time after the museum wandering around Cuba Street, which is a sleepier version of Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood. We purchased a blanket and attempted to find a hostel, but everything was full-up given the aforementioned treaty singing celebration. After a few drinks at Scotty and Mal’s and a quick show at Ivy’s Caberet, we re-located to the carpark on the waterfront and snuggled in for the night.