A place called home

Home…

This month I was kindly asked to be a joint host in a monthly blog linkup. The topic is oh so appropriate given I’ve just reached my 2 years back in New Zealand last Friday. So sit back, relax and let me tell you a little bit about this place I call home…

ponga frond

A ponga frond, one of the many beauties of nature in New Zealand

Closing my eyes, breathing in fresh coastal air, it’s a bit chilly, but satisfying.

The sun starts beaming down, sparkling on the water and warming my skin.

I can be walking the coastal paths around East Auckland sipping a coffee or frappuccino.

I can be wandering around my favourite spot of Mount Maunganui, contemplating life while a Tui bird sings happily.

Time stands still as the water moves and sloshes away. Leaves rustle in the slight breeze.

This is a place called Home… New Zealand.

Auckland harbour - blue sky days in winter

Auckland harbour – blue sky days in winter

Kohimarama Beach, Auckland, New Zealand

Kohimarama Beach, Auckland, New Zealand

View of the beach and city from the top of Mt. Maunganui

View of the beach and city from the top of Mt. Maunganui

Trees and rocks along Mt. Maunganui

Trees and rocks along Mt. Maunganui

Pilot Bay, Mt. Maunganui

Pilot Bay, Mt. Maunganui

It is not just one place, but a country that encompasses nature and life. My family live here. They may not live that close to me, but I know I can visit them on weekends when our schedules fit.

It may not always be happy but it’s a place to call home.

I’m astounded when I travel around New Zealand and find a new and stunning destination that I never visited before. Until my return in 2015, I’d never visited the South Island before and now I’ve been down there 3 times visiting multiple areas each time.

New Zealand’s South Island

The South Island is a bit more chilly, but it is home to lovely snow capped mountains, stunning coastline and beautiful lush countryside (and a few sheep). The cities and towns can be vast and cultural or small and quaint. From Christchurch to Akaroa, Nelson to Abel Tasman, Kaikoura to Queenstown, Wanaka to Arrowtown. They all have their own personalities and are filled with welcoming Kiwi people.

Neil Dawson's Fanfare

Neil Dawson’s Fanfare, Christchurch

View towards Akaroa

View towards Akaroa

View from the Centre of New Zealand, Nelson

View from the Centre of New Zealand, Nelson

 

Little Kaiteriteri, Abel Tasman, Nelson

Little Kaiteriteri, Abel Tasman, Nelson

Kaikoura, NZ

Kaikoura, NZ

View over Queenstown

View over Queenstown

Roadtrip to Glenorchy from Queenstown

Roadtrip to Glenorchy from Queenstown

Lone Tree, Wanaka

Lone Tree, Wanaka

View from the Crown Range

View from the Crown Range

Arrowtown, Gold Rush town of New Zealand

Arrowtown, Gold Rush town of New Zealand

New Zealand’s North Island

The North Island is a bit of a warmer climate with many stunning white-sand beaches. We don’t fear sharks too often and snakes and spiders aren’t a problem. We have plenty of farmland with sheep and cows. The South Island may have many of the ‘Great Walks,’ but there is also plenty of bush and forest walkways, often leading to waterfalls at your feet in the North Island.

Whangarei Falls, New Zealand

Whangarei Falls, New Zealand

Path to Kitekite Falls

Path to Kitekite Falls, New Zealand

Kitekite Waterfalls

Kitekite Waterfalls, New Zealand

Me and my Dad at the top of Mt. Maunganui

Me and my Dad at the top of Mt. Maunganui

We have quite a ‘batch’ and ‘beachy’ lifestyle in New Zealand. Growing up I lived in the countryside in the Bay of Plenty, a stones throw from Waihi Beach and not far from Tauranga and Mount Maunganui either. We had a small lifestyle block of fruit trees, vegetable gardens and plants along with a designated area for an array of free-range chickens that my father prided himself with. Down in the gully was a muddy stream and an area where we could walk and see glow worms at night. I never knew how lucky I was as a child to have all this at my fingertips.

As a teenager and adult weekends spent at beaches and siblings batches were commonplace. As long as a beach isn’t too far away Kiwi’s such as me are generally content.

View of Pauanui

View of Pauanui

Park bench at Pauanui beach

Sunshine in Pauanui on a Winter’s Day

While I have lived most of my adult life abroad in Austria and the United Kingdom and travelled the globe from Africa, Europe, North, Central and South America to Asia and Oceania… New Zealand will always be the place I really call home.

Where do you call home?
This month’s linkup we are thinking to get a little nearer to the places closest to our hearts — home. Whether it is an adopted home, a birth home or somewhere that felt like it was a second skin — we can’t wait to read all about it.

It could be a country, a city, a scent, a view. Or even the special moments that you like to share with visitors.

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