Bethells

 
 

A Weekend In The Catlins

There is still a good portion of my home country that I want to explore in more detail. I've been through most places to have a quick look, with the idea being to find the places I liked and travel back to them for longer periods later on. The only place I hadn't actually been to was the Catlins, in the southeast corner of the South Island. My wife and I flew down to Dunedin and rented a car for the long weekend. We nearly didn't get down there due to fog at the airport, but after a delay on our flight, it finally cleared. 

Starting in Dunedin, we of course had to visit the steepest street in the world, Baldwin Street. It's not terribly exciting in itself, but you really have to go to say you've been. I can confirm though that it is steep. We also visited the albatross colony at the end of the peninsula. You can book your visit/tour online. We chose well, as we were the only two on the particular tour!

Driving down the coast we stopped in a few small towns, and enjoyed the scenery on the way. The small motels we stayed at were all very friendly, which is a nice change from the bigger, busier ones in the main cities. Along the coast we went to Nugget Point, where the wind was intense and freezing cold. Around the bottom of the island there are many lovely landscapes, many waterfalls and many stretches of coastline. We only visited for a long weekend, and there are plenty of places to go back and see again.

 

 
 

Icefields Parkway, AB

Between Jasper and Banff is the Icefields Parkway. It's an amazing drive! We drove down to Saskatchewan River Crossing and back from Jasper. Stunning scenery prevails all the way, with wildlife thrown in here and there.

 
 

Jasper, AB

We spent a couple of days in Jasper, a town in the national park that is a junction for places to go.  To the north there is Pyramid Lake and Patricia Lake. Surrounding the area there are many lakes, with a half hour drive there is Medicine and Maligne Lakes. To the south is the Icefield Parkway - an amazing drive! Here are some scenes from around the Jasper area.

 
 

Rising Terrain

As we drove farther northeast, the mountains became larger. The varying terrain provides several waterfalls, included the Rearguard Falls, pictured below. This waterfall was one of my favourites, as you could get right down to the waters edge near the fall - quite impressive.