Otago Peninsula & One Very Steep Street

After leaving lovely Larnach Castle, we continued along the winding coastal road, up to the tippity top of Otago Peninsula.

The view was so gorgeous along the drive that we had to stop for a quick photo op.

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We were headed for the Royal Albatross Centre. As the name suggest, there’s an albatross colony there, actually the world’s only mainland breeding colony of Royal Albatross. You can also see Little Blue Penguins (Kororā in te reo), if you stay for nightfall, when they all come home from a day’s fishing out at sea. Since the sun sets so late this time of year, we had to pass on the penguin viewing.

Luckily, we were in for a surprise! Emma and Sophie spotted a pod of orcas out in the bay, and we got a magical glimpse before they dove and disappeared. No time for photos, but the seals were easy enough to capture. They were enjoying the sun as much as the rest of us.

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The weather couldn’t have been more different than it was a couple hours earlier at Larnach.

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Even the Paradise Shelducks, or Pūtangitangi, were out with their cute little ducklings. Dad is on the left and mom on the right. The difference in coloring is amazing.

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What an incredible spot.

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We thought about doing an albatross tour, but instead decided to wander to the other side of the peninsula to see the view before heading back down the peninsula. No one especially wanted to tackle that road at night!

The path to the lookout was 99% gull and/or albatross poo, which of course smelled lovely, so we didn’t stay long. Just look at this view, though!

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Can’t blame those Royal Albatross for choosing this spot to roost.

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Perfect chance for another group shot, where my long monkey arms came in handy.

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And then it was time for the drive back to Dunners.

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Before going back to our bach in St Clair, we made a slight detour to the Baldwin Street, the world’s steepest residential street, according to Guinness World Records. Although it may not look like much, people come from near and far to walk up this bit of concrete.

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Most of the group were content with staying in the car, so Emma and I hopped out to make the climb. You get the best sense of steepness when you can see the angle of the buildings along the road. At its steepest point, Baldwin Street has an incline of 1:2.86 (for every 2.86 meters travelled horizontally, the elevation changes by 1 meter). Whoah.

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Not a bad view as we got closer to the top:

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And we made it!

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Baldwin Street is the setting for a quintessentially Kiwi event every year – the Cadbury Jaffa Race. According to Wikipedia, “since 2002, a… charity event has been held annually in July, which involves the rolling of over 30,000 Jaffas (spherical confectionery-coated chocolate confectionery). Each Jaffa is sponsored by one person, with prizes to the winner and funds raised going to charity.”

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Otago Daily Times: Gerard O’Brien

Of course it is.

No Jaffas were to be seen this time of year, just some funky houses on a steep, steep street.

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Now, this next one was obligatory. LEAN BACK.

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Luckily, both Em and I are equally keen on goofy tourist photos. 🙂

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No shame in enjoying every inch of NZ, no matter how bizarre.

Our patient friends amazingly hadn’t taken off, so we hopped back in the van and settled in for some wine and takeaway at our rental home. Couldn’t have asked for a better sunset show from Dunedin on our final night.

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The next day, it was off to the airport for our flight back to Welly. I will 100% be back again for another visit to Dunedin – what an awesome place!

What’s next? We shall see, as Christmas approaches and Andy and I have two weeks off. I’m sure there will be something interesting to share. I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday season!!

2 thoughts on “Otago Peninsula & One Very Steep Street

  1. Good on you and Emma for making that steep climb! Is your next post going to describe how sore your calves were afterwards? 🙂 I don’t blame you for wanting to return to Dunedin & the Otago Peninsula; those scenery photos are fabulous. Loved the seal and duck photos, too. The orca sighting was a real bonus for your group. Very lucky.

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  2. One more destination to add to our list, although I will enjoy the view of the world’s steepest residential from the same vantage point as your friends. Such beautiful scenery, and who can resist a yawning seal. Next time, penguins.

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