We crossed the Southern Alps via the Haast Pass on Good Friday and arrived on New Zealand's sparsely populated West Coast province in midst of a downpour. We had hoped to see a beautiful sunset over the Tasman Sea and the warm golden glow of sunlight on snow capped peaks, but instead we cautiously crept along the coastal highway in a dark deluge of typhoon driven rain.
The next day cleared up a bit and we visited the Fox and Franz Josef glaciers. We also tried to catch a glimpse of Mount Cook/Aoraki... Ok, more than tried, we waited for over an hour in one spot hoping for a break in the clouds and one good picture.
Easter Sunday 2017
We had made plans long before our trip to drive all the way from Greymouth to Westport on Sunday morning and catch an Easter Sunday church service there. It seemed good on paper when we had planned it months before. We got a late start and a bad breakfast Easter morning and hit the road trying to drive the impossible distance before 11 am. Thankfully we soon realized that the best plan was to ditch our original plan. So we turned around and found a church in Greymouth instead, and then took a much more leisurely and enjoyable drive through Punakaiki on our way to Nelson far in the north.
The "pancake" rocks of Punakaiki were one of our trip's highlights for me. All in all, our Easter Sunday coastal drive was long, but the sunshine and views were worth it.