Day Thirty Four: Train to Picton, Ferry to Wellington!

I was not joking when I said that we had a 6:15 a.m. pick up scheduled this morning! The Coastal-Pacific rail line runs from Christchurch up the east coast of the south island to Picton. And it leaves at 7 a.m., so we were expected to check in by 6:40 in the morning.

By the time we saw these haybales out the window the cafe service had started and we had some coffee. Life was good...

By the time we saw these haybales out the window the cafe service had started and we had some coffee. Life was good…

train 2 out the window

train 3

train 4

Once we got out to the coast the views were beautiful, and I was able to enjoy them because someone else was doing the driving!

Once we got out to the coast the views were beautiful, and I was able to enjoy them because someone else was doing the driving!

train 6

Yes, it could be the California coast. There is so much about New Zealand that reminds me of home.

Yes, it could be the California coast. There is so much about New Zealand that reminds me of home.

The door may be narrow, but on a 5 hour ride you're just happy they have a toilet!

The door may be narrow, but on a 5 hour ride you’re just happy they have a toilet!

The last car is and open viewing area. WIndy, but much better for snapping photos.

The last car has an open viewing area. Windy, but much better for snapping photos.

The last car is open air for photographers and fresh air seekers. It's not good for your perfectly styled hair though. Good thing I always sport the wind-blown look anyway!

The last car is open air for photographers and fresh air seekers. It’s not good for perfectly styled hair though. Good thing I always sport the wind-blown look anyway!

I was texting my friend Ken about cows when we passed these big ones!

I was texting my friend Ken about cows when we passed these big ones!

Those are long rolls of hay.

Those are long rolls of hay.

Back in wine country! This is near Blenheim, where we did the wine tour of earlier post fame.

Back in wine country! This is near Blenheim, where we did the wine tour of Day 22 blog post fame.

Blenheim, the last stop before Picton.

Blenheim, the last stop before Picton.

So you can see where we were on the trip...

So you can see where we were on the trip…

train 14

We arrived in Picton a bit after noon and had a short walk from the train station to the Interislander Ferry Terminal where we checked in to wait for our ship, the Kaitaki, to leave for Wellington. It was REALLY easy to find our way, all we had to do was follow the trains stenciled on the sidewalk.

Picton follow the train markers

One way to travel, but not the one we took.

One way to travel, but not the one we took.

Kaitaki at the dock.  It's HUGE!

Kaitaki at the dock.
It’s HUGE!

While we waited we had a snack and some coffee in the terminal.

While we waited we had a snack and some coffee in the terminal.

Picton Pier Cafe coffee and apple

Plain 'ol coffee. Called either a short or long black depending on the size...and it doesn't matter if it has milk and/or sugar in it...it's still a long (or short) black.

Plain ‘ol coffee. Called either a short or long black depending on the size…and it doesn’t matter if it has milk and/or sugar in it…it’s still a long (or short) black.

Loading humans on the the ship. Yes, that's the back of a DOUBLE trailer semi that was also being loaded.

Loading humans on the the ship. Yes, that’s the back of a DOUBLE trailer semi that was also being loaded.

Thank you Tangaroa (New Zealand god of the sea) for a smooth crossing!

Thank you Tangaroa (New Zealand god of the sea) for a smooth crossing!

Interior of the Kaitaki. Is this posh or what? We got 2 tables and chairs on level 8.

Interior of the Kaitaki. Is this posh or what? We got 2 tables and chairs on level 8.

A last shot of Picton from inside the ship before we left for Wellington.

A last shot of Picton from inside the ship before we left for Wellington.

We were delayed in departing by a bit over half an hour. We spent the travel time, almost 4 hours, writing postcards, reading, listening to music, walking around, and playing cards. It was A LOT of sitting between the train trip and the ferry, but in the end it was worth it…we arrived in Windy Wellington on the north island, got our luggage and new rental car and headed for our lodging!

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