Sailing into Picton, the gateway to the South Island and the Marlborough & Queen Charlotte Sounds, is a beautiful experience. Picton is a small town located on the northern tip of the South Island with a population of about 5000. It is the main link between the north and south islands via ferries which carry people and automobiles. At the port one could see tonnes of lumber (trees) waiting to be transported away, so it is a busy port also. We are the last cruise ship to visit this year and it was a beautiful day for us.
My tour today was kayaking on Queen Charlotte Sound. I was worried about the weather because it has become decidedly colder here in New Zealand being much closer to the Antarctic. I thought perhaps I had made a bad choice. But the day turned out to be ideal. The sun was shining and the temperatures were in the low 70s. We saw seals cavorting nearby, trying to look like the dolphins who were a little further away. Spotted Shags – a type of cormorant – were flying along with us. It could not have been a nicer day – especially since we didn’t tip over. The water was pretty cold around our ankles when we boarded our kayaks.
A beautiful day in a very beautiful part of the world.