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In 1977 we hired our first narrowboat from Anglo Welsh at Market Harborough.From that moment our destiny was set. In 2006 we finally purchased our own brand new 57' narrowboat which we named 'Free Spirit'. Our aim is to travel the length and breadth of all the navigable rivers and canals of the UK. This will be our story as it unfolds.

Wednesday 1 March 2023

The workshops of Weta Cave

 March 1st 

What a lovely start to the day. No need to rush off anywhere, chairs came out, we soaked up the early morning sun. By 11.30am it was time to leave for the Weta Cave. Lunch had been planned before the 1.30 pm tour and I wish I had taken a photo of lunch! In fact, it was one of those all day breakfasts for $18. OMG what a feast! Three sausages, scrambled egg made with three eggs, two peppered tomatoes, 4 rashers of bacon, mushrooms and two slices of toast with butter. Quite how I managed to eat it all, well I hate wasting food but just couldn't finish the last bit of toast.

Trolls greeted us at the entrance to the Cave. Got to have that silly photo, it's compulsory!


The Weta Cave shop had a small museum of sorts which had many figures from various films. It was the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings we were most interested in.


Bilbo Baggins feet

This was an amazing piece. Check out the price! Yep you could purchase nearly all items on show including the two below.

The tour started dead on time. No photos allowed in the workshops but I will say it was fascinating finding how all the props were made. Cameras allowed in the final room it was also the time for all to try their hand at making a skull out of silver foil. What a laugh. I was useless, Ian slightly better but noone came anywhere near how it should look. What could be made just from foil was staggering. A dragon appeared before our eyes, marvellous how talented some folk are.

Top attempt was mine, Ian's at the bottom

All made from foil

Not quite what we expected when we booked but we both agreed it was worth going to. Before we left a last visit to the loo. 

Much better studying these drawings rather than reading one of the tabloids!

It was time to leave and keep fingers crossed that we could find a space back at Owhiro Bay. Gosh, how lucky were we that the camper van who had pulled out in front of us at a junction, stopped, looked and then drove past the only remaining space left. Having parked, pop top up and solar blanket fixed in place, it was back along the beach to find more of those lovely shells. A sea Urchin lay high and dry and loads of seaweed littered the beach The wind had picked up and the sea quite rough bringing debris with it. More shells were found. It was a lovely way to pass an hour.


As the sunset we had the last nostalgic look at the South Island. It was the most amazing trip over there and sorry that it will be the last. Still we have a couple more weeks on the North Island and the most will be made of what remains. 

 So this will probably be our last night here. Tomorrow we make for Zealandia, a wildlife refuge. What happens after that is yet to be decided.

I took this with my little red Olympus Tough camera. Good in and out of water.

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