Tag Archives: New Zealand

Auckland: New Zealand

After a few days in Hamilton, we drove to Auckland. We had a great time in Hamilton and all of us were looking forward to the rest of the holidays.

I really enjoyed this holiday as I got to spend lots of time with my parents without needing to worry about work or cooking or chores. We were all relaxed and happy to explore places and enjoy each other’s company.

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The driver form Hamilton to Auckland was beautiful with the sun out and greenery everywhere. Seriously, no matter how many times we visit New Zealand, every time it manages to take our breath away and we always return wanting to go back again.

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We reached our hotel in the afternoon and checked in. We had got a hotel near the city centre so we were walking distance to many attractions.

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In Auckland we went to

  • Sky tower
  • Queen street shopping strip
  • Wharf
  • Aotea Square
  • One tree hill
  • Cornwell park
  • Onehunga Mall

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While in Auckland, we discovered this amazing Indian eatery called Little India by accident. They have a few branches around Auckland and I highly recommend the restaurant. I have eaten in so many Indian places but this was just the best so far. Loved every food we tried there. We ate there every night as my mother loved the food. We tried different dishes and love all of them. The especially loved the chole bhature and chicken curry.

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We had a great memorable family holiday and I can’t wait for our next holiday to start 🙂

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Take care everyone,

M from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

 

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Hamilton Gardens: New Zealand

When I was googling places to visit in Hamilton, I discovered Hamilton Gardens and so glad I did. The garden receives over 1 million visitors a year.

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Hamilton Gardens won International Garden of the Year 2014 and it is one of the beautiful gardens I have visited. On top that, entry is free so we went there two days in a row so we could look at everything there. There is plenty of parking as well so it is a must place to visit if you are in Hamilton.

The garden is separated into five themed collections, which are Paradise, Productive, Fantasy, Cultivar and Landscape. Within each of these collections are individual themed gardens.

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The Paradise Collection consists of an

  • Indian Char Bagh Garden – an interpretation of a 16th – 17th Century garden built for the Mughal aristocracy who spread their empire eastwards from Persia into northern India from the 13thcentury onwards. WE loved the garden as it reminded me of our visit to Taj Mahal and garden around it.

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  • American Modernist Garden -a late 20th Century garden designed for outdoor living, in the American West Coast tradition featuring swimming pools, barbecue and outdoor eating areas. There is a huge mural of Marilyn Monroe.

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  • Chinese Scholars Garden – an interpretation of the 10th – 12th Century Sung Dynasty gardens consist of windy path, rock décor, red bridge, moon door, lake with plenty of koi and pavilion.

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  • English Flower Garden – designed in the style of an English 19th Century Arts and Crafts garden which emphasised simple forms and natural motifs.

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  • Japanese Garden of Contemplation – an example of the 14th – 16th Century Muromachi Period gardens which we couldn’t view unfortunately as it was under construction.
  • Italian Renaissance Garden – an interpretation of the 15th – 16th Century Renaissance Gardens with fountain in the middle of the garden, the high surrounding walls, flat square beds with edges lined with plants, beds of simples, flowery meads, and the arched trellis work making it so beautiful.

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On day one, we mostly did only this section and we really enjoyed it. So we decide we will go back and finish the whole garden.

The following day we went to visit Productive Collection consists of following edible gardens.

  • Kitchen Garden – traditional European productive garden with a variety of vegetables and small fruits.

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  • Herb garden – 20th century invention using four beds defined by their purpose, – culinary, medicinal, cosmetic and perfume herbs. Two other sections of the Herb Garden contain herbs used for dyes and for herbal teas.

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  • Sustainable Backyard – designed around sustainable gardening principles so some things have many functions and most available space is used and waste is used as a resource.

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  • Te Parapara Garden – traditional Māori horticulture garden that displays plants that can be used as resources as well as plants of cultural significance. I have never been to garden like this before. You get some kind of feeling when we were there looking at Maori handicrafts.

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The next one is Fantasy Collection which includes

  • Chinoiserie Garden – European interpretations of Oriental design that were fashionable in late 18th and 19th Century gardens.

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  • Tropical Garden – uses plants from other climatic regions to recreate the luxuriant beauty, colour and fantasy of tropical gardens.

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  • Tudor Garden -traditional garden reflects the fascination 16th century English aristocracy had with geometric patterns and symbolism with double meanings. I love this garden as it t is surrounded by mythical beasts on top of the pole like Unicorn, Dragon, Satyr, Centaur, Sea serpent etc. and it was really good.

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  • Surrealist Garden – under development

After these garden, we went to next collection called Cultivar collection which includes

  • Hammond Camellia Garden – tells the story of the discovery and development of the Camellia genus, which is one of the most popular ornamental plants in New Zealand gardens. We spend lots of time around this garden as they have chairs provided for us to rest.

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  • Rhododendron Lawn – Nepal’s nation flower is Rhododendron so it was exciting for us to walk around the wooded area and other gardens bordering the path that circles the Rhododendron. They were so many tress and they have lots of flowers, just beautiful.

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  • Rogers Rose Garden – tells the story of the development of the modern rose through a series of themed areas that each focus on a different aspect but unfortunately as it was winter, we didn’t saw only few roses. I could imagine how beautiful it will look in spring.

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  • Victorian Flower Garden – the Victorian Flower Garden there are really two themes. Firstly, the garden and greenhouses featuring plants bred for colour and curiosity; and secondly, a 19th century garden in the English gardenesque tradition.

All of us, including my parents and Chhori enjoyed the garden. We felt like we went to different places as we walk around different theme gardens.

I highly recommend anyone going to New Zealand to stop here for a day and enjoy the nature.

Take care everyone,

M from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

Hamilton Zoo: New Zealand

I guess the way we spend time during a holiday has changed completely. I used to write about adventures and running around when we holidayed as a couple but as a family it was a more relaxed pace like spending a day at going to a zoo :).

We have been looking forward to this family getaway for a long time and we were all excited.

First thing at the zoo is a photo in front of the signage 🙂

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Hamilton Zoo is an average sized zoo, not very big to require days exploring but big enough (25 hectare) to spend with small kids walking, around and enjoying. The best part is that the animals are not caged like in most zoos so visiting Hamilton zoo feels like you are walking in a National park and animals are living in their nature habitat. All the animals are still at a safe distance in massive enclosures so they could roam freely.

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We started our tour with the Rhino first as the lady in the counter told us there is a baby rhino on display who will be removed later.

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I guess everything when they are baby are very cute, even the rhino. We enjoyed the two adult rhinos playing with each other while the baby rhino followed her mum around. We spent lots of time there and Chhori was excited to see a rhino after watching all the animal related rhymes.

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It was really nice to see many animals so close as well. I have never seen a red panda or a giraffe so near me. When we visited Dubbo zoo, we had a pretty good encounter with giraffes but this was even better as we are on the same level and I could see how tall they really are. They are just spectacular and we spend lots of time admiring them.

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The Sumatran tiger exhibit was also impressive so were the chimpanzee and cheetah.

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There were many chimpanzees on display and there were some babies too. It was really cool to see them lay a picnic rug before they sat down. So many of their actions reminded me of human beings 🙂

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We also saw lots of other creatures, including native New Zealand birds and reptiles.

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The other thing I discovered that day is how patient and great teacher AS is to our daughter. The whole day, he was pointing at animals and birds and explaining to Chhori what they are and talking to her to keep her interested.

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Also I saw how much my parents loved Chhori as they kept on playing with her making sure she was OK. It is so great to have them around.

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It took us around 3 hours to walk around the whole zoo. Chhori napped for an hour or so during the visit so she was full of energy when she was awake, running around everywhere and enjoying the day.

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We all were hungry at the end of it so we went to the café onsite for lunch. They even have peacocks walking around the café area. We ordered burger and chips and Chhori had nuggets.

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There is a playground inside the zoo as well so Chhori and I managed to have fun for a while on the swing before we left the zoo.

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I have to admit we all had great fun. A perfect way to spend a day in Hamilton.

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Next stop Hamilton Garden, see you soon with that post.

Take care everyone,

M from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

 

Our family trip to New Zealand

As I wrote in my post, I was excited and anxious about our trip to New Zealand. I was excited for Chhori as it was her first overseas trip but scared for myself as I didn’t know how I would handle her if she started to cry or threw tantrums in the plane.

Our flight was at 9 am so we took a cab to the airport very early. Luckily, Chhori woke up on her own around 6 am so things worked out perfectly. We had a bit of drama for the cab but we reached the airport on time and checked in and were in front of boarding gate by 7 am.

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Like last time, Chhori was walking around and saying “Hi” to everyone around us in the waiting lounge. She made friends with a few of the air hostess from Emirates. They were really nice and sweet with her and Chhori loved all the attention.

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Then it was time for the actual test: 3 hours flight with a toddler. The good news was that she was well behaved and happy the whole flight. She just ate and interacted with people most of the time. We also had a tablet ready for her just in case she got cranky but she was not interested in her rhymes for a long period.

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She would rather walk up and down the aisle. Everyone on-board were very sweet to her when she went in front of them randomly and said “Hi”.

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On our way back she even made friends with a family who had two kids around 6 and 8 years. They were happy to take her for almost an hour, so she sat on the mum’s lap playing with crayons and toys. The kids were playing with her and she was delighted to play with new people and toys. I really appreciated having such lovely people on-board our flight. So overall, Chhori was well behaved on the plane and our next big test will now be during our big trip to Malaysia and Nepal next year. Hope it will be as easy as this one.

As I and AS had been to New Zealand multiple times, this time we made sure we knew what we were doing every day in advance. We flew to Auckland and spent a few days in Hamilton and the rest of our trip in Auckland.

When we left Sydney, it was warm and sunny for winter but New Zealand was really cold and chilly. Once we landed, we hired a car and went straight to Hamilton.

Hamilton is a small beautiful city 2.5 hours from Auckland airport. By the time we reached our hotel, it was dark and was drizzling a little. We checked in and were glad to find our rooms were warm and cosy. We ordered our dinner and just rested for the evening as we planned to go to the Hamilton Zoo the next morning.

The next day, we were greeted by a beautiful sunny day and were glad there would be no rain for the rest of our time in Hamilton. Our hotel was next to a golf course so we could see greenery when we opened the window. I felt very relaxed and happy and so did AS and my parents.

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On the other hand, Chhori was too excited discovering new rooms, opening every drawer and cupboard :). It definitely made us realise how much we have done at our own place to childproof the rooms. We don’t have to worry at all to leave her on her own in our apartment but at the hotel, it was hard to be constantly making sure she didn’t hurt herself or break something.

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After breakfast, we drove towards the zoo . I was driving that morning and, it was a breeze to drive there in comparison to Sydney, no road madness and no crazy drives. It made me realise it may be a great idea to live in a small city where getting from one place to another is not a big headache.

I will write about our trip to Hamilton Zoo in my next post.

Till then take care and have a great day.

M from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

City2Surf 2016

Hello everyone, I am back. It has been a crazy few weeks for me. The holiday to New Zealand was amazing and we had fun. I will post more details on it soon.

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Since being back, we ran the City2Surf and I am glad it is over now. As you may have known, before Chhori, AS and I used to run the 14km every year and it was one of our default routines.

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But for the last two years, we didn’t sign up for it as the first year, I was pregnant and the year after Chhori was too small.

This year we decided it was time to get back to running again. Having my parents here has allowed us to leave Chhori with them. Our aim this year was to do better than previous years and we were mentally ready.

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During training, AS was very motivated and pushing himself very hard. Unfortunately, he hurt his knee during the process and had to take some medication so AS was not sure at all if he could run or not. On the other hand, I was determined to run.

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I was training well in the beginning but it went pear shaped a few weeks before due to the rainy weather and the holiday to New Zealand.

To cut a long story short, on the race day AS was okay to run and we did a run and walk so the we don’t hurt his knee.

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I am so glad we did it as it was a beautiful day with thousands of fellow runners. The atmosphere was just beautiful and we had fun all along. Also while we walked we had our Pokémon Go app on so we managed to catch a few Pokémon too :).

We didn’t better our timing from previous years but were very close so I am happy with the outcome.

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I hope to do better next year. I am also looking forward to Chhori growing up so she will go with us as well.

Spring is almost here for us so I am very excited and looking forward to beautify Sydney days.

How have you all been?

Take care everyone.

M from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

 

Chhori’s first overseas trip

We are off to Auckland, New Zealand tomorrow and I am really excited for Chhori as it is her first overseas trip. I know it is not very far away but 3 hours flight to another country where you need a passport to enter will be another milestone to celebrate for Chhori.

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We are going with my parents and it will be their first time to New Zealand as well. Me and AS are going to be the guides for this trip as we have been to NZ multiple times.

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We (AS and I) love New Zealand as it reminds us so much of Nepal and it is definitely one of our favourite destinations. If you remember, we went to New Zealand on my babymoon too so technically Chhori has been there when she was still in my tummy 🙂

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For last few days Chhori has flu and mild fever but it seems to be getting better. I hope she will be 100% when we head to the airport tomorrow.

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We have done most of the packing and are eagerly waiting for our adventures.

We will be there for a week and have planned most of the days on what to do and where to go.

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I will definitely blog about the trip once we are back.

Till I see you again, have a great day and see you soon.

M from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

Tips on baby friendly holidays please

I am sure you all know by now that I love travelling and going to new places. The last time, we had a holiday was our babymoon to New Zealand.

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So it has been more than a year since my feet touched a new place so it is definitely itching. But the big problem now is I have no clue about holidaying with a baby.

We definitely want to go spread our wings with Chhori but we are so new to this that we are a bit scared. I don’t know what kind of holiday I need to research. There are so many questions in my mind. Beach, mountains or something else? Is she too young? Should we wait? Will she be bored or annoyed if we fly? What do you do when you travel with a year-old baby?

While I was pregnant, I was thinking that we will do what suits us and the baby will adapt but looking at Chhori now I don’t want her to be uncomfortable in any way thus all these questions in my mind. She is the most important person in my life right now and I will never forgive myself if I put her through a difficult situation.

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Anyone who has travelled with a small baby, please do share your tips. We definitely need a holiday but we are so clueless.

Hope to book something soon and slowly adapt to our new life as parents and travellers  🙂

Take care everyone,

from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

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