Despite our late night last night, I hit the day running this morning! I had some errands to run, namely returning library books and making arrangements to close my bank account. The employees at the National Bank have provided me with the best customer service. It made my complicated requirements a breeze!
For breakfast, we went to David’s favorite place in New Zealand other than the Coromandel Hot Spring: PieMania. The little bakery has little more than pies, but their selection of flavors is anything from minimal! I got a veggies pie which was full of all different kinds of veggies! I was wowed!
After our very Kiwi brekkie, we took a bus to One Tree Hill to spend another day with decent weather outside. After two very helpful bus drivers, we made it to One Tree Hill Domain. Everyone had so much fun feeling like a kid again on the zip line. It’s really pretty thrilling!
The lucky family got to see some New Zealand sheep in their natural habitat!
Though One Tree Hill is steeper than Mount Head, the path is paved so it was an easy journey to the top. There were a bunch of runners showing off, passing us on the way up. I admire them, so!
We made it to the summit of One Tree Hill at our own pace, however, and took in the spectacular views!
Though it was a bit cloudy, we could still get clear views as far as the eye could see!
Next, we walked over to Cornwall Park, another reserved area of nature on the other side of the park. Mom kept marveling at how this little bit of nature looked just like the English countryside but with wonky trees could be right by the Auckland CBD! (What does CBD stand for, anywho?) I had originally planned to go for a light lunch at the historic tea house in the middle of the park, but unluckily for us, they were not offering their light menu while we were there. We stopped in the information center for some directions, but we were pleasantly surprised when she offered us a glass of water and a chance to watch their historical video on the area. It was a great time to refresh and learn a bit!
We took the bus to the Brickhouse, the cafe I took David to as soon as he got to Auckland. The family thought it was a really cool place, too, and I got the most darling little soy capuccino:
After our little lunch (I had a ginger loaf slice and a chocolate chip cookie :)) we got ready for our big night: dinner in the Sky Tower! I changed my outfit twice, but it’s not everyday you dine in a fine restaurant at the top of the tallest building in the Southern Hemisphere!
When we arrived at the Sky Tower, we made our way 50+ stories up to the main observation deck. We took in the spectacular views as the sun went down.
We could see for miles and miles, in all directions. We were pretty lucky because right when we got there, we got to see someone jump! You can pay to get dropped down from the top of the tower, but it’s not as cool as bungy jumping 😉
Parts of the floor were glass! It’s a long way down!
When our reservation was ready, we made our way up to the Orbit Revolving Restaurant. We were seated on the outer edge of the restaurant,t which revolved around once per hour. Basically, it was awesome.
I was excited to see Villa Maria wine on the menu, the very first winery I went to! Mom and I got a glass of Sauvignon Blanc, which was delightfully fruity!
We also got a few appetizers. This grilled calamari wasn’t battered and fried like it normally is, and I loved the light, fresh flavor.
We also got some kind of cheese in filo:
And Dad shared some of his mussels with me:
But the real star of the show was my dinner. I was so happy to not only see vegetarian meals clearly labeled, but vegan meals clearly labeled! I went with the vegan shitake and oyster mushroom risotto, with a pea salad on top. It was to die for!
The view to the left of our table wasn’t bad either. Look at my city all alight at night!
I wasn’t going to get dessert, but when I saw a vegan rhubarb and apple crisp, with coconut oat crumble and rasperry blood orange sorbet, I just couldn’t say no.
We all had such amazing meals and we will NEVER forget what a cool restaurant experience it was. A once-in-a-lifetime deal, for sure!
After poking around the gift shop…
the family let me walk to my apartment. I am having such a wonderful time with my family, but I am also really super anxious to get home!