Yes we are very lucky here in New Zealand to finally survived the 2nd lockdown last month (Auckland only as the rest of the region are on level 1 and the South Island arecovid free!) after some SILLY people who came home for their own safety sabotage our peace and safety here inside the country! I am so annoyed at them. Who wouldn’t? being on a lockdown is not that fun for the 2nd time around. We follow the rules here but those people acted the way as if they are in another country who they don’t care much about. Anyway, thanks for everyone who cooperated and the government for acting quickly (though there’s an inside story about this which is part of their fault) so now we are back to ALMOST back to normal. Aside from wearing face mask, social distancing and sanitizing like an OCD we are fine and can travel anywhere in the country now that we are in level 2. Soon this coming Thursday we will be back to level 1 which is great more freedom!! but yes do not be complacent and they suggested to still wear a face mask when on public transportation including airplanes!
Please watch this video below and if you could SUBSCRIBE to PinoySwiss abroad channel on Youtube that would be great for more videos!
I am glad that we finally went here last week before we get into lockdown again this week after having freedom for more than 100 days covid-free! Why? same issues like what other countries are facing eversince. Now we are back to lockdown level 3 for 2 weeks then we’ll see what’s next.
ARATAKI VISITOR CENTER (above) it is just 40 minutes drive away from our place. Narrow winding roads, bush walks everywhere.
This is where I go for exercise and do some repetition of walking before the gym. In this tough times we need to be mentally healthy and fresh air plus a dose of sun helps a lot to boost your endorphins!
Our zoo is also naturally beautiful. It serves like a mini paradise for all the animals living inside. So many natural landscape that you cannot help but to take some photos.
The moment we’ve always been waiting for! After missing all my friends for 3 months of lockdown / quarantine level 4-2 we had our “thanksgiving party” that we are all safe and healthy! Only now we will miss them again.
This is just 30 minutes away from home. This also serve as a ferry terminal and every week end there is a Farmers market nearby and lot’s of homemade products to buy and dine in to. It is for the whole family plus this walkway is long enough for you and your dog to walk on and enjoy the view.
Brunching before cruising is nice for a week end away with the family (above) NZ oldest riverside tavern.
There are a lot of places whether hiking, horse riding, hunting, camping or beaches we had it all in the West. Wild West indeed. The featured image above is in Titirangi Village. They are housing 2 art galeries here and some restaurants with a wonderful view of nature.
These are some famous places that I have been in the past (bold) and some would like to visit. Check them out here below:
Piha beach and the Lion rock
Waitakere ranges – for bush walking
Kumue wine country
Muriwai beach – on top of the cliffs hundreds of gannet birds nesting here
Skydiving in Parakai or if you’re a PRO then any cliffs will do
Extreme edge rock climbing in Glen Eden
Kiwi Valley Farm Park
Hollywood Cinema – the oldest in NZ since 1915
West Lynn Flower and Butterfly house
Helensville Railway Station
And many more like this vlog as below from PinoySwiss abroad (Youtube) please watch, like, share and subscribe! 🙂
So many things to do and see plus so many old and new restaurants, coffee shops and malls to choose from. West is developing alright as the population in Auckland soars! Until next time. Thanks for reading.
“Necessity is blind until it becomes conscious. FREEDOM is the consciousness of necessity.” by Karl Marx
It seems we are now in a hurry to make the most of our covid free days since the country open up the border to it’s residents and citizens who were based or/and stranded abroad. We can basically say we are covid-free since June as we do not have a community transmission but we can never know since the last mishaps of some irresponsible people coming back and physically jumping out of the barriers of their hotel isolation recently (they have been caught up and going to be charged with their follies!) which is by the way the taxpayers are paying for them though it’s those people wanting to come home and be safe… ironically they are the one bringing the fear and unsafety back to the country or community by disobeying the law and safety. I wonder if we should close up the border now or continue to accept these people with covid-19 back into the country? So now is the right time to go and about on our own backyard asap while we still can!
The City, the tower, the wharf and street. Some photos for you to see this month of July. Life is good while we can still have the freedom to enjoy it!
Auckland War Museum. We have so many museums in the City and this is just a few minutes drive away from the city centre. It is inside the Domain Park which is also a huge park and full of beautiful nature that you will love to stroll or do some exercise since it is near residential places.
The food & drinks at the bar & restaurants, coffee shops, foodcourts at the mall, food trucks, farmers market etc. Yes we’ve been deprived of these while on lockdown. All open now to our hearts (& mouth) content.
Auckland Zoo. The nature and their animals are such a wonderful sights to see. Families and friends came back to visit this wholesome activity and it doesn’t matter if it’s raining or drizzling people comes in hundreds and yes back to normal no social distancing and enjoying the life!
Arataki Visitor Centre. Located in West Auckland. Bush walkways. View of the Waitakere ranges. Sub-tropical rainforest. Flora and fauna. FREE entry.
I hope you enjoyed my post today and these are current photos here in NZ. We are now in the mood to travel. Our last week of school holiday. Thanks for your time!
“TRAVITUDE = When you start to feel grumpy and sassy cause you miss travelling.” anonymous
“TRIPOPHOBIA” = The fear of not having any travel trips currently booked.” anonymous
Just for fun but it still makes your soul happy to reminisce the past travels while we have some restrictions in place. It is much safer at least so enjoy the ride and check out below photos surrounding the beauty of Rhinefall. Just an hour away by train from Zurich HB. We were there last January 2020 before people all over the world become aware and fearful of the COVID-19.
This is also in response to Cee’s Photo Challenges“Fan of (partially blue skies)Challenge“. If you want to join and create your own virtual travels just click the link.
Let’s travel to Switzerland again once this pandemic is over but in the meantime I am looking forward to seeing more of my home country New Zealand. Cheers!
Going to the universities in Zurich is the same as going (click this link) to Focus Terra a small geological museum and also a university in itself. This place is full of them, both… museums (we didn’t get the chance to view the zoological museum as it was close on a Monday) and universities and yes there’s a hospital too!
Below is another mode of transport. SEILBAHN (cable tram/funicular) near the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology and a spacious square terrace nearby. It is on the higher ground hence the reason there is a cable tram/funicular aside from the normal tram you can take on the other side of the road. Either way, it’s always on time as Switzerland is known for precision.
My photos surrounding these universities cannot do justice to the real beauty of it if you were there. Cool January adds up to the charm of the place.
It’s nice to dream while we are facing the world in chaos(link to the previous post).
Allow me to post one of our travel backlogs last January 2020 while in Zurich, Switzerland. Since my son and I love to go to a museum and we already been to the Swiss National Museum or also known as Landes Museum click the LINK (to read my older post about it)… I decided to see a smaller museum and it’s FREE to enter where some people don’t know that it exists, and yes harder to find if you are not familiar with the location. We got lost looking for a particular street on the map. So I make it easy by showing some photos below on what landmark to look from.
Here below is the Terra Focus, a museum about volcanoes, fossils, rocks, minerals, etc. Going there by public transport you have to take either Tram #9 or Tram #11, near the main train station Hauptbahnhof and tram stop @UniversitatSpital (University Hospital). FYI.
Crystal @focusterra.zurich, vinneve
FocusTerra signage, vinneve
The brochures above are located inside the museum as it doubles as a University. See this LINK for more information if you happen to be interested in these subjects and wanted to study in Zurich. ETH Zurich is one of the most prestigious universities in the world. The location of Focus Terra is within the university belt and there’s a beautiful park nearby. I will post some photos of the beautiful surrounding on my next blog. Please wait for it. Tschuss!
We were here 2 years ago but only went to LEGOLAND for our son to enjoy and no time to roam around after as it was late and we have to go drive almost 2 hours to go back home to Abu Dhabi. So this year last January we finally able to get around and see what this big park can offer.
I highly recommended ROVE Parks Hotel as it is inside the Dubai Parks and Resort along with other resorts like LAPITA and 4 themed parks (Motiongate, 2 Legoland, Bollywood & Riverland). We got a good deal at that time and 1 theme park ticket was included in our hotel accommodation. The room was enough for us, modern and clean. The restaurant offers a buffet which is always good and it’s spacious inside with wooden style decors. They also have a laundry room and a BIG plus is having kids playroom includes PlayStations, games, badminton, etc. (my son loves it!). Always check their website for more deals. I would love to come back here if ever we go back to the UAE.
ROVE PARK HOTEL
OUTLET VILLAGE MALL all the branded shoes, bags, and clothing are here with some discounted prices. It is also inside the Village of Dubai Parks and Resorts. There are a lot of free shows inside so when you get tired and sit on the bench there are possibilities a new show will start for everyone to enjoy! One more reason why you have to visit this place!
RIVERLAND beautiful landscapes and buildings surrounding the 4 themed parks with restaurants and souvenir shops. They really developed this for the enjoyment of people strolling around, getting their selfies and instagramable photos. One day is not enough to see it all. The place is HUGE plus some theme parks inside and a connected resort (LAPITA) to this place. How I wish we still have time to explore! 😦
I will definitely miss Dubai and other emirates (Cities) and of course my adopted city Abu Dhabi. I am not sure if we will ever come back to the UAE as it depends on what the future will bring us. Somehow it hurts that for now, we bid our farewell to the beautiful and tolerant country of the UAE. I will look back on all the throwback memories on Facebook and can only reminiscent of the past while we were living in this Country. There are times I took it for granted and all the luxuries in life we had but now I am truly grateful that I have experienced it all while we can.
Cheers and I hope you like some of the photos and may give you some ideas if you happen to be in Dubai or Abu Dhabi, not to mention other emirates who are also as beautiful and interesting as these two. Please check my older post about it as per this LINK1 and LINK2. Thanks for taking the time to read, like and comment.
I told myself that we will go to this amazing palace even for my last time as you now know… We are now going back to New Zealand for good. There’s a lot of photos actually but I cannot put it here as I don’t have enough space. I made sure that we will experience all the beautiful places in both Abu Dhabi and Dubai. FYI, as some of you get confused with the two Cities… both have their own interesting places but Abu Dhabi is more of a family-oriented place. No traffic unlike in Dubai and more parks. It’s a year of tolerance too!
I got a neck ache as I keep on looking up! Even the ceilings are amazing! So if ever you want to go in transit via Abu Dhabi make sure that you get the chance to get out. It is so worth it. FYI, Emirates Palace is also just a few minutes away from this place. Though this Palace is located at the back so a van is included to bring you to Qasr Al Watan. It’s that big! Cheers!
Winter wonderland?! Where else but in Switzerland 🇨🇭
We came just after Christmas to be with my son’s grandparents & relatives. Spent the New Year with them. Yes, beautiful sunny weather up in the mountains!
The one in between mountains is not snow but clouds or thick fogs. 2nd of January and people trying to get all the last day of holiday as some will go back to work the next day or so.
It’s dry winter here so it’s not as cold as you think compared to New Zealand humid winter weather if you happen to be in Nz from July – August winter. Of course, the temperature is much lower here in Zurich compared to Auckland. It can get -1 or 0 zero degrees or much less. The air is crisp but fresh. Inside the house is a lot warmer & can wear one layer of normal clothes compared to Nz houses you have to double up the layer of clothes as it’s not properly insulated (unless you turn up the heating that you get a shock when receiving the power bill) unfortunately compared to Switzerland houses (underfloor heating) which is mostly run by gas or oil for heating so it’s more energy efficient.
We’re in the Canton of Schwyz with the link connecting to famous Einsiedelnwhere we went last year with friends (see older post) and went to Ibergeregg pass mountain overlooking the famous Rigi mountain. Beautiful sceneries and long winding road. Lot’s of cabin style restaurants overlooking the mountains. It’s worth the trip more or less 1 hour from Zurich.
Passing towns are interesting and you may stop and see what they offer. Lot’s of tourists and locals either biking around or walking as they have to park from far away distance as parking nearby is impossible in peak hours or important days so be prepared. Get comfy warm reliable shoes for walking from roadside to snow. Don’t worry even seniors do it.
I’m writing this via my iPhone. More places and pictures to come. So FOLLOW ME while we travel around ZURICH and nearby towns, villages and other Cantons in Switzerland. Tschuss!!
After our July holiday in Abu Dhabi leaving hubby there to continue working, we went back to our dailyroutines including going places around Auckland to be reacquainted after long years of absence in Nz. And yes this nest of eggs is just propped beside our house on top of an old garden mat, reminding me that this is where we started out as a family.
Western Springs – we love this Park. It brings old memories. This is just 20 minutes drive away from home with normal traffic. A big public park for everybody. All the birds and other animals here mostly are tame and you can feed them with your leftover bread then they start to follow you that sometimes it can freak you out too haha!
Auckland Zoo – this is just beside Western Spring Park so it’s two in one either you go to the Zoo first or the Park then your whole day and night outing are full-on. The Zoo is very big as well so wear a comfy shoes and your good spirit with or without a kid in tow.
Auckland Art Gallery – my son and I love museums and art galleries. For locals, it is free to enter here so I just have to show my ID. It is located in the City Center and just a walking distance from the famous Queen Street just beside Albert Park.
Auckland City – yes the harbor is very busy in summer months from both tourists and locals alike. To go across another island like Waiheke or if wanting a ferry instead of driving to Devonport or Coromandel you can get to ferry easily except when you have to go on a long queue when there are some cruise ships docked at the port. Most tourists coming from cruise ships tend to go to the little islands. Unfortunately, an incident of a sudden volcanic eruption in the White Island (NorthIsland) the cruise ship Ovation of the Seas(we were there when it was docked in AKLport) some passengers were having their tour of the volcano when it suddenly erupted. Click the link above and this (update: 8 now dead etc.) Condolences to those families who have been affected. So sad.
Albert Park – Just beside AKL Art Gallery. You will be amazed that there is a park-like this in the middle of the City. They used to celebrate CNY (Chinese New Year festival) here and we had very nice memories with the whole family before our fate changed.
Auckland Viaduct – Families with children love to go across this bridge. There are some free entertainment here (free movie night & playgrounds) plus the restaurants and bars lined up so you won’t get hungry! A free library in nearby giant benches if you want some reading in your spare time while in the City or just a walk for some fresh sea air or watch some rich people sailing their expensive yachts and big boats, or perhaps if you can afford to rent it.
There’s a lot more to visit and for sure will post it here. Follow me as I will show more of each place in my next post. Soon it’s another holiday and yes another travel adventure awaits! Guess where we will be for Christmas and New Year?… wait for it or better FOLLOW ME. A LIKE and a comment would be great. Cheers!