Sunday, September 14, 2014

Sunday: Auckland/Devonport

I had a lousy night's sleep last night. First there was a group down the hall from me having a little party in their room, making a fair bit of noise. It was before 11pm, so I didn't want to be a jerk and complain about it, but it made it harder to get to sleep. Then at 4:49am, a woman came back to her room and tried to get her roommate to let her in, knocking and speaking loudly for several minutes.

I mentioned all this to the front desk clerk when I came down for breakfast, as well as the fact that the wifi wasn't working in my room, which was kind of frustrating. He offered to move me to another room later today.

I had breakfast and then did my laundry. This is the 3rd place I've stayed that had washers and dryers available for guests to use, which is pretty nice. I went out for lunch after sorting out my laundry and packing everything up, ready to move, and then came back to the hotel to change rooms. The first try still did not have working wifi, but the next room did. As a bonus, it's a slightly larger room (with a second bed to pile all my stuff on), and has two electrical plugs!

After resettling in the new room, I caught a bus down to the ferry terminal, and took a ferry across the harbour to Devonport, a cute little suburb built around two of the many volcanic cones that Auckland is built atop.

Auckland, as seen from the ferry heading to Devonport

A bit further out

Maybe the first time I have seen a tug boat actually tugging!

I walked to the top of Mount Victoria (which took less than 30 minutes from the wharf); this was undoubtedly the best view/hike ratio I've ever had.

Downtown Auckland, as seen from the top of Mount Victoria

Rangitoto (where I'm heading tomorrow), from Mount Victoria

View of the other volcanic cone in Devonport

Hyperlapse of the panoramic view from Mt Victoria

I walked back down the "mountain", had a beer in a pub by the water, and then caught the ferry back to downtown Auckland. Grabbed dinner in a food court (Auckland is very quiet on a Sunday evening, and most restaurants were closed), and then went to see a movie: The Dark Horse, a Kiwi film based on the true story of a man with great personal challenges who helps kids in his community by coaching them at chess. Better than it sounds. It was slow at the start, but got a few tears out of me by the end.

I got a bus back to my hotel. It was close to midnight before I got to bed.

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