Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Day 7: Gore, Dunedin and Larnach Castle

On the 28 December we left Te Anau and headed to Dunedin via Gore and Balclutha. Gore is the "World Capital of Brown Trout Fishing" and New Zealand's "Capital of Country Music", but since we didn't see any fish, musicians (or locals for that matter) around, I'll have to take their word for it.

Dunedin is the second largest city in the South Island of New Zealand, and it was pretty quiet for a city its size when we arrived around lunch time. We drove by Baldwin Street which claims to be the world's steepest residential street. You know what they say "location, location, location!"

Baldwin Street
In the afternoon we headed to Larnach Castle which was built between 1873 and 1887. Despite its grandeur and beautiful grounds, the house's history is filled with tragic deaths, infidelity, suicides and legal battles so it's a reminder that money certainly doesn't equate to happiness (and that rich people are really messed up).

What would have made the tour more interesting is the mention that the house is supposedly haunted! I didn't feel a presence (though I didn't like being in the conservatory room which overlooks over the entrance), but going up and down the narrow spiral staircase to the tower did make me very uncomfortable. Whether it was the claustrophobia or that I couldn't see if someone was coming down, it was an eerie and unpleasant experience.

View of Dunedin from the tower

The tower spiral staircase is wide enough for only one person and it was pretty creepy. Oohh, check out my red Merrell shoes which are super comfy!

View going down the tower spiral staircase

We had afternoon tea in the ballroom (which is supposedly one of the rooms where paranormal activity has been reported). The scones and biscuits were unfortunately less than exciting.

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