Cornwallis

Cornwallis is a peninsula (and a Regional Park) in Waitakere Ranges Regional Park, next to Huia, on the Manukau Harbor (view on Google Maps).

Cornwallis Warf
Cornwallis Warf

I chose the Jubilee Walk, which takes in Cornwallis Beach and Cornwallis Wharf, but there is surely more in the area worth exploring.  I can’t recommend the Jubilee Walk as a loop, because the road part is dry and dusty and busy with traffic, but the bush part of it is nice enough, although pretty short.  Park in the first carpark you see on Pine Avenue – there are signs for the Jubilee Walk.  Park on the right side of the road, and take the track that way.

Jubilee Walk
Jubilee Walk

You’ll soon arrive at Cornwallis Beach, which was the highlight of my visit.

Cornwallis Beach
Cornwallis Beach

It’s a long beach, with plenty of grass and picnic areas along its length.

Cornwallis Beach from Cornwallis Wharf
Cornwallis Beach from Cornwallis Wharf

Maui dolphin have been spotted at Cornwallis Beach, but I wasn’t so lucky.

Cornwallis Wharf
Cornwallis Wharf

From some points along the beach you can see McLachlan Monument.  Monument Track may be a nice walk, certainly a nice climb, sure to offer some great views.

McLachlan Monument
McLachlan Monument

Once I got a look at a map near the beach I got a better idea of what the area and the various tracks offer.

Map of Cornwallis
Map of Cornwallis

In retrospect I should have gone and done the Kakamatua Beach Walk, and gotten a look at another Cornwallis area beach.  But instead I went and had a look at the view from Huia Point Lookout.  It’s well worth a stop if you’re in the area.

Manukau Heads, the opening of Manukau Harbor, Whatipu, and Huia, from Huia Point Lookout
Manukau Heads, the opening of Manukau Harbor, Whatipu, and Huia, from Huia Point Lookout

Huia Beach was another worthwhile stop.

Huia Beach
Huia Beach

You can view the full gallery of 23 pictures below.  There may be some minor problems with the gallery below, but as always you can view all of the pictures on imgur (click here).

Korean cuisine is the best restaurant value in New Zealand

The Korean food in New Zealand is just like I remember it from Korea.  The ingredients and flavors seem very authentic.  So do the metal chopsticks and spoons, and stone bowls that can be served hot, for finishing the cooking of dolsot bibimbap in the bowl for example.

Dolsot bibimbap
Dolsot bibimbap – Wikimedia Commons

Because Auckland is one of the larger and more diverse cities in New Zealand, Auckland has a lot of Korean restaurants to choose from.

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Fish roe soup at Myeong Dong restaurant in Takapuna

In Auckland, a main, such as fish roe soup (above), costs about $13-$15.  They are served with 5-8 side dishes, always including kimchi – and you can ask for more.  Tea is usually included as well.

The photo above was taken at Myeong Dong Korean restaurant in Takapuna.  They have free WiFi!

Makgeolli is a Korean rice beer that I really recommend.  It is available at most Korean restaurants.

Makgeolli - Wikimedia Commons
Makgeolli – Wikimedia Commons

One of my favorites is Totoya Korean Japanese Restaurant in Albany.  They serve 8 sides with every main, and they’re always busy.

Man Du Rang in Northcote Center serves the tastiest dolsot bibimbap I’ve had.  Everything there is good, but they don’t serve alchohol.

Korean BBQ

Korean BBQ restaurants are a bit different in that they specialize in meats cooked by guests on a grill at their tables, but they can offer great value as well.  My favorite is One Dak Hanmari Korean BBQ in Takapuna.

One Dak Hanmari Korean BBQ in Takapuna
One Dak Hanmari Korean BBQ in Takapuna

For $25 you get all you can eat, with quality cuts of meat and a wide range of Korean side dishes and deserts.

One Dak Hanmari Korean BBQ in Takapuna
One Dak Hanmari Korean BBQ in Takapuna

Many Asian cuisines are available at a good price in New Zealand, but I have found none that is a better consistent value than Korean.

 

Chelsea Estate Heritage Park

I didn’t feel like traveling far, and the tides weren’t right to explore more of the coast, so I decided to visit Chelsea Estate Heritage Park.

Chelsea Estate Heritage Park
Chelsea Estate Heritage Park

The sign shown above provides a map, shown below.  This is a pretty good indication of what Chelsea Estate Heritage Park has to offer.

Chelsea Estate Heritage Park map
Chelsea Estate Heritage Park map

This is a small park, and much of it serves to provide walking access between neighborhoods.  It does offer nice views of the harbor, and the Harbor Bridge, and there is a bit of bush to walk in as well.  And of course there is the Chelsea Sugar Factory.

Chelsea Sugar Factory
Chelsea Sugar Factory

I think I was told some time ago that very large eels live in the ponds near the sugar factory.  I didn’t see any, but I didn’t take the time to look closely.

Pond
Pond

I was about to walk on of the bushier trails in the park when I got a text.  A couple of hard-working friends from Thailand had decided to go for a walk on this beautiful day, but had found only concrete jungle, and were requesting help.  For one of them, it would be the first time visiting a beach in New Zealand, so I took them to Cheltenham Beach, and we climbed up onto Northhead.  Later we took in the view on Mount Victoria.

Rangitoto from Northhead
Rangitoto from Northhead

It was a good day for a change of plans.

Cheltenham Beach from Northhead
Cheltenham Beach from Northhead
Mount Victoria from Northhead
Mount Victoria from Northhead
Bunker on Northhead
Bunker on Northhead

Hey! Mr. Prime Minster!!!

I’ve never met the Prime Minister of any other country, but somehow I didn’t think it would be quite like this.

I knew that John Key was coming to Devonport this morning because the police were asking people to move their cars to provide space for him to park.  One officer told me that the Prime Minister was coming.  I wondered if she was supposed to tell people that.

But maybe it was public information that he would be at the Devonport RSA (Royal New Zealand Returned and Services Association) this afternoon.  I was at Henri Cafe, my favorite spot to use WiFi in Auckland.  Parking spaces were reserved right in front of Henri Cafe.  It was certainly no secret.

A lone “Ban 1080protester arrived in time to find a spot right in front of the RSA.  She is a nice, very happy lady.  I noticed an obvious DPS (Diplomatic Protection Service) agent at about the same time.

Ban 1080 protester
Ban 1080 protester

I had plenty of time to decide that I should get my camera, and see if I was actually allowed to get anywhere near him.  I was starting to realize that I actually might not get tackled, and a knee in my back, for trying.

Two cars pulled up and parked.  A bearded DPS agent got out of the second car and stood next to the Prime Minister’s door.  The driver of first his car got out and opened the door for Mr. Key.

Diplomatic Protection Service
Diplomatic Protection Service

There were not many people around.  Someone strolled past, but seemed to take no notice, or to get much from the authorities.  I was standing outside the cafe with the lovely barista.  Once he emerged from the car there was no one between us.  It was somehow the natural thing to do for New Zealand Prime Minster John Key to walk over and shake my hand.

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key
New Zealand Prime Minister John Key

He talked a bit with the barista, and posed for a picture with her, and she offered him a coffee.  One of his staff followed her in to get it for him.

The PM talked with a few people on his way to the RSA, while the lone 1080 protester shouted “shame on you!”  It was a small crowd.

A little while later I decided to go into the RSA and see what was happening.  There was no one at the door.  The one DPS agent stayed close to Mr. Key as people walked up and talked to him.  The meeting had something to do with senior citizens.

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key
New Zealand Prime Minister John Key

It was all pretty low key.