New Zealand: Mt. Doom and Wellington

For Christmas here, we did one of our longest drives, since everything was closed for the holiday.  Don’t worry, we did a festive job of it with Christmas music and holiday cheer 🙂

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We’re driving through pretty much the entire country on Highway 1, and this leg took us from Lake Taupo to Wellington, where we would catch the ferry.  The drive was absolutely beautiful, taking us past fields of sheep and cows, mountains, and even the place where the filmed Mordor and Mt. Doom for Lord of the Rings!

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We stopped for a picnic lunch of cheese, crackers, wine, and meats.  With restaurants and even most gas stations closed, I think we rose to the Christmas meal challenge with flair!

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After arriving in Wellington, we toured a bit of the city, drove up to a viewpoint looking down on the city, and meandered along the coast.  It is the capital of New Zealand, and is a beautiful area.

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We finished off the night with frozen dinners, board games, and apple pie.  Definitely not a traditional Christmas, and I missed my family, but it was wonderful and I was so thankful to spend it with people who have become a second family here!

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