To maximize on our time and finances, we accepted an early bird flight from Christchurch to Auckland. This would put us on the ground in time for breakfast and we can spend the day in Auckland. But, this meant getting out of bed at about 3:00 am for the two hour drive to CHCH.
"I'm hungry!" was the phrase for the drive. This is mid June and winter is just starting. We occasionally have some frost on the windshields in the morning. I have yet to see ice on the roads at sea level. We arrive at the CHCH aerodrome just as it is getting daylight. After a quick check-in, we head for the coffee shop for a Long White and something to eat. The coffee is good, see CHRISTCHURCH AERODROME JUNE for more details. But, lets say the muffins left a little to be desired.
During the two hour flight up, I notice a snow covered mountain peeking through the overcast. It looks like a perfect volcano, an inverted cone. I checked my map and so I'll have to figure out which mountain it is later.
We arrive at the Auckland Aerodrome and aren't long getting the rental car. Next order of business, find a real restaurant to get some real breakfast! We head into Auckland, I was planning to take the "back roads" in hopes of driving past a nice looking place but turns out, there is no highway from the airport to the city! Heather, being the eternal tour guide, had read about a quaint little town with a nice park called "One Tree Hill!" So we decided to drive up and down the main drag of the town called Onehunga, [No, I don't know how to pronounce it!]
Here, we happened by an old converted post office called, The Post Office. This turned out to be a great little shop, see THE POST OFFICE in the coffee section. This was a neat little shop with some great breakfast food. We got the first bagels we've seen in New Zealand. Excellent eggs and, of course, great coffee. They had an interesting arrangement of espresso machines and coffee grinders for sale, but I had to restrain myself!
After breakfast, we started in on the shopping and sight seeing. A few hours in the mall for the kids, we promised them they could shop in the big city, and then a walk through One Tree Hill for Heather. The Auckland area was suppose to have more shops and stores to choose from and the kids were hoping to find some styles and fashions more like they're used to in NA. [Try to keep the butt crack covered!] I was definitely tagging along for the family bonding experience!