New buildings reflected the architectural styles of the times - Stripped Classical, Spanish Mission and Art Deco. Local architect Louis Hay, an admirer of the great Frank Lloyd Wright, had his chance to shine. Maori motifs were employed to give the city a unique New Zealand character - for example, the ASB bank on the corner of Hastings and Emerson Streets features Maori koru and zigzags. Napier's city centre has the feeling of a time capsule - the seamless line of 1930s architecture is quite extraordinary.
What a super place to walk around and admire. We drove around the suburbs to find even more stunning art deco houses and the highlight was the Tobacco warehouse by the port.
On the road and so glad we weren't towing a caravan because Ian struggled to keep the van going straight. How those high-sided lorries coped with those gusts was beyond me. We chose to travel to a place called Ohakune. A drive across the Ruahine Range with stunning scenery.
|Bridge spanning the Rangitikei river|
And we got stopped by a train at Tangiwai first time that has happened to us either here or in Oz. At Okahune we found an information centre and first thing was to enquire about camping. Now we had no idea that this was also a winter playground for skiers. Should have guessed as the temperature had dropped drastically and I had to resort to wearing a jumper. A drive up the mountain road was suggested, to see waterfalls and find a free campsite. So up we drove to reach the ski resort of Mount Ruapehu. Shame the cloud covered the top and we didn't quite get to where the snow was. Boy was it cold standing that high up. Almost made me homesick for that lovely freezing UK weather....or then again maybe not!
|Mangawhero Falls and as you can see Ian is made of sterner stuff. No jumper!!!|
|View down the valley.|