For our last stop in New Zealand, the ship docked in Port Chalmers in the southeast of the Otago Peninsula, New Zealand. We boarded a tour bus to Dunedin, a well-preserved Victorian city, and soaked up the grandeur of its architecture from the classical A.N.Z Bank to the buildings surrounding the Octagon, an eight-sided plaza that forms the core of Dunedin’s lively business district.
A photo stop at the Octagon provided views of notable landmarks like the
Town Hall, the Women Jail and St. Paul’s Cathedral.
The magnificent train station had a dedication to the soldiers who died during the war.
The center stage on our excursion was a guided tour of Larnach Castle, which is beautifully situated in the tranquil countryside. This neo-Gothic estate, built for William and Eliza Larnach and their six children by renowned architect Robert Arthur Larson, commands the highest point on the Otago Peninsula.
Approximately 200 men spent three years building the shell of the 40,000-square foot mansion overlooking Dunedin, Otago Harbour and the Otago Peninsula.
Then a team of European craftsmen stepped in to finish the interior, including a 3000-square-foot ballroom added for the 21st birthday of Larnach’s favorite daughter, with a lavish array of masterful embellishments.
A pipe player greeted us. As we explored New Zealand’s only castle, we experienced William Larnach’s colorful era and his “bravura” lifestyle.
The Barker family bought the castle as their home in 1967 and spent more than 40 years restoring it, filling it with original New Zealand period furniture and antiques, and gracing it with a “Garden of International Significance.”
After Dunedin our Captain announced a change of itinerary “due to adverse weather condition.” We understood his warning when the ship started rocking like a hammock out of control. I was almost thrown out of the treadmill and avoided the gym without guilt. The open decks were locked to protect people from being thrown overboard. The Captain said he didn’t want to hear, “Man overboard.” We were advised to hold on the rails as we went up and down the stairs. Less and less people showed in the restaurant at dinner time for the obvious reason. But I slept like a baby in my swinging stateroom bed.
Our little group surprised me with a birthday cake. I even received a birthday card signed by the Captain.
Stay tuned for the passage through the Fjords of New Zealand and arrival in Tasmania Island.
If you like to travel and love to read, come and enjoy my international romances. Around the world through stories that simmer with emotion and sizzle with passion.
Happy Birthday dear friend!!
I forgot to add that the original castle owners were wealthy Britons but the castle brought them bad luck. The first wife died young, the second also died, and the third wife had an affair with the oldest son. The husband received an incognito letter telling him about the affair and he committed suicide. Another son also killed himself. The heirs were bankrupted and had to sell.
I very much enjoyed seeing your photographs, Mona. I’m becoming quite the armchair traveler.
Glad you enjoy the pictures.
Tried to a post my comment but I think I lost it. 🙂 Anyway, I enjoyed your pictures, Mona. I agree that you always take us a little bit on your travels.
Your post is here Debra. I am always happy to share my pictures and traveling.
Enjoyed the photos, Mona! Would loved to have sat on your shoulder.
Anytime Carol. LOL
Interesting, I didn’t know a castle like existed there.
Oh yes, Nancy. A castle that has a weird room with clothes and articles worn by the ladies. I had a strange feeling as if there was a ghost in this room.
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