We started the morning in Kaikoura. A few of us got up early to enjoy the coast. The mountains and the South Pacific with the sun rising over them were beautiful!
Then we headed back though the winding mountain roads, stopping a few times for the group studying natural disasters to take pictures of the damage from the November earthquake. Our destination was Waipara Hills Winery. We enjoyed lunch and a wine tasting. Many of us got to broaden our horizons, trying a variety of white wines, all made in New Zealand. We also learned about how wine is made and got to peek into their production facility. New Zealand has been growing their wine market and has become the third largest importer of wine to the United States, after Italy and France. The country exports $500,000,000 of wine to the U.S., making it an important part of their export-focused economy.
With full stomachs and cultured palettes, we headed back to Christchurch to fly to the North Island. A short flight took us to Tauranga, where we will spend the next two days.
The South Island offered us many beautiful sites, unique experiences, and learning opportunities. We look forward to seeing what the North Island has in store for us!