After the very wet day in Wellington, the weather cleared beautifully for our crossing of the Marlborough Sounds from the North Island to the South Island.
We asked at the hotel of the most convenient place to get petrol as we were supposed to fill the tank before returning the vehicle. We were told that there was a petrol station on the way to the boat terminal but as slowly as we drove and as carefully as we looked we didn’t see one. This meant dropping the car off empty and waiting to see the charge on the card later.
On arrival at the terminal we had been told to leave the car in the parking area and drop the keys in the Rental Car box. The first task was easy but the 2nd caused us and others a lot of frustration. It was one of those situations where the answer was ‘in plain sight’ but nowhere near the rental car offices. It was just inside the door where we registered to go on board!
Homes on the hills around Wellington
Crossing the Sounds took just over 3 hours through a most beautiful flat blue sea surrounded by cliffs and bays with homes tucked into small places. Similar to and yet different from the Prins Christian Sound in Greenland, these cliffs were not as steep nor green and there was no snow or glaciers to be seen and yet they were quite majestic.
2 lighthouses for cliffa and rocks
Some homes in the Sounds
On arrival in Picton it took almost half an hour to collect our new car as there was such a long queue of people waiting to rent cars and the limited staff on duty. We got going at about 2pm for the reasonably short journey to Blenheim where we had been booked for 2 nights. It took us quite a while to find the hotel as there were 2 with similar names in close proximity. We could not believe that we had been booked into such a beautiful place. Unfortunately, after a walk around the area we felt that Blenheim itself was not as good. More about that next time.
For now, let the pictures of the Sounds do the talking.
Cliffs in the Sound
Rocks in the Sounds near a small town
Entrance to Picton Harbour