What’s your favourite place?

Spring.

It’s been almost a year and a half since we moved to the far south and I have definitely found my favourite place here.

I really enjoyed capturing how this beautiful Invercargill’s park changes with the seasons.

Queens Park is 81ha of stunning gardens in the city centre. You need a few hours to explore it and still everytime I go there for a walk I find something I didn’t see before.

Tree lined walkaways, bush paths, winter garden, bird aviary with colourful parrots, Japanese garden, museum and a cafe will keep you here for hours.

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Summer.

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Autumn.

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Winter.

 

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New Caledonia: Hienghene Limestone Islets

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Beautiful scenery followed us all the way to Hienghene. It was so nice to drive along the east coast while realizing that landscapes are getting more and more different.

What I really liked along the way are people. Everyone is waving all the time while saying hello as you drive past them. Don’t forget to wave back.

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La Cascade de Tao.

To get to Hienghene you need to cross the Ouaième River by the barge. It takes just a few minutes to get to the other side and the ride is free but donation is always welcomed.  This is the only barge in New Caledonia so try to include it in your route.

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Heinghene is a small commune known for its fascinating limestone islets. Look at this view, it’s amazing!

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What would be the best way to explore this surroundings? With a kayak of course! We stayed at the Babou Cote Ocean camp and it is one more awesome place to put a tent! Again a relaxing spot just a few meters from the beach. Here you can book snorkelig and scuba diving tours as well as rent a kayak. We took a kayak for a few hours and enjoyed every second of it! Perfect way to experience the nature from a different perspective.

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If you don’t want to stay in a camp you can stay at the Koulnoue Village. We went there for a walk and to finish this perfect day with a ‘cheers’!

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Prices:

Babou Cote Ocean, camping site, NZD$20, (1400 XPF, two people a night)

Kayak, NZD$40, (3000 XPF, double kayak, half day)

New Caledonia: On the way to Poingam

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Our stops after Bourail were Kone, Koumac and Poum on the far north.

There are some great beaches along the way, perfect to stop and refresh a little bit whenever you want.

In Koumac we stayed at Gite du Lagun. I have to recommend this place. It is a perfect camping spot and the owner is great. Most of the tourists in New Caledonia are French so a lot of people don’t know a word of english here. The owner of this camp is from Greece and speaks great english. It was nice to finally meet someone who knows the region very well and who can give us a few tips about some of the spots around here.

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The view in the morning… So peaceful.

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Bananas for breakfast!

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Pandop marina, a few minutes from Koumac.

He told us about Caves of Koumac (only around 380 meters or so can be visited, you need a lamp) and Malabou beach, which were on our route.

This beach is stunning! White sand, palm trees all around and a small bar to enjoy the view. One of the best spots on the island.

Just, don’t come here to sunbath because a lot of huge mosquitoes are here to ruin the fun.

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Malabou Beach

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If you want to stay here you can rent a bungalow.

Far north is a bit deserted and there’s nothing much to do so we spent the rest of the day wandering around, not bad at all!

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Northernmost point of New Caledonia.

There are a few camping sites around here and we decided to stay at the Le Relais de Poingam. A dirt road leads to this place and it really was a bumpy ride.

The camping sites are located a few meters from a beautiful beach and it was a nice place to spend a night.  However, some of the facilities weren’t in a good condition.

Travelers like to visit this place because traditional dinner is organised for the guests every night. The restaurant looks great and three course meal is all about local produce.

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Great spot for a coffee or a beer at the camp.

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What I didn’t like about our trip around north region were mosquitoes. A bottle of repellent was enough just for two to three days. And, it didn’t really help! I think those annoying flies are already used to it. Don’t forget to bring some loose-fitting clothing, long sleeves and pants with the material not so close to your skin.

Prices

Gite du Lagun, tent site NZD28$ (2000 CFP, two people a night)

Le Relais de Poingam, tent site NZD$25 (1800 CFP, two people a night). Traditional dinner is organised for the guests every night. It is a three course meal for NZD$50 (3500 CFP).