Auckland – the final day

This was our one full day in Auckland, which we both agreed would be enough. At least for me, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed our time in the countryside and our freedom of having the car. Being smack dab in the middle of a bustling city seems so incongruous with the rest of our time here. It’s the first place where it hasn’t been sparkling clean. I’m finding myself to not be much of a city person at this stage of my life.

Last evening we had wandered around on foot so for today we decided the best way to get a feeling for the city was to get tickets for one of the hop on hop off buses. I didn’t care for that when I was in NYC on my way to Africa but I was willing to give it a go again. Turned out much better than the last go round. There were two routes around the city plus it included going up in the Sky Tower and on the foot ferry to Devonport.

So onto the bus we went, touring for several hours. I enjoyed it once we were out of the CBD, or central business district. Once we had gone completely around we decided it was time to head up the Sky Tower, the most distinctive landmark here. We first went to the 51st floor to look out and around. It was also where we saw two women sky jump off the tower. One can also walk around tethered in on a glass walkway all around. I had thought I’d want to do that until I walked over some glass inserts in the floor and even that surprisingly gave me a bit of the heebie geebies. Decided to save my money and sanity. We then went up to the 60th floor, which was the top and had even better views. We continued our gawking on the 50th floor at the cafe for lunch.

Once back on the ground we got back on the bus and headed to the harbor where we boarded the foot ferry. It was a very quick, easy ride to the peninsula across the bay to Devonport. It must be somewhat of a commuter ferry as we saw a good many riders greeting each other and sitting together yakking. Just like at home. We didn’t have time to do more than ride across and then ride back, but it gave us a different perspective of the city. We boarded the bus for the final loop back to the Sky Tower. By then it was time to find a restaurant for our last dinner here. Dian was thrilled to get a plate of mussels (I mentioned she can’t get enough of them) and I got a seafood brochette, so we were both happy.

As we were walking back to the apartment we got a hankering for ice cream, but found nothing. Finally Dian suggested we go into one of the many superettes for an ice cream bar. Bingo! Hit the spot.

Then it was time to pack for the trip back to the States and to check in for our flights. Somewhat bittersweet as we’ve loved our time here.

I’ll post my epilogue once I’m heading home and have time to reflect on the journey. Thanks for traveling with me!

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