Pacifica Trip Diary – Day 21

Day 21: January 28, 2014

Today is the last leg of my trip home and something like back to the future.  I leave South Korea at 11:40 am on Tuesday and arrive at Chicago, Illinois at 9:00 am on Tuesday.  The flight was about 13 hours.  I had the same good service I had on other Korean Air flights.  I left at -9F from Chicago and returned to -9F.  In between my ranged from a high of 95F in Cairns, to a cool 70F in Queensland, to 40F in Inchon.  These were all daytime temperatures.

I returned home and began the process of unpacking and preparing for work which began the next day.

Trip Statistics

Activity 

 Number

Travel Days
                   21
Flight (Jet) Hours
60
Flight (Prop) Hours
1
Helicopter Hours
.5
Distance Traveled by Jet
26,318
Airports (non duplicated count)
6
Jet Boat Hours
1
Bus Hours
16
Cab Hours
1
Countries
3
Cities/Towns
12
Walking Hours
30

Cities/Towns visited

—Inchon, South Korea
—Brisbane, Australia
—Cairns, Australia
—Port Douglas, Australia
Mossman, Australia
Kuranda, Australia
—Sydney, Australia
—Christchurch, New Zealand
—Hokitika, New Zealand
—Arthur Pass, New Zealand
—Makarora, New Zealand
—Wanaka, New Zealand
—Arrowtown, New Zealand
—Queenstown, New Zealand—

Reefs

Green Island
Norman Reef
Michaelmas Cay
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Pacifica Trip Diary – Day 19

Day 19: January 26, 2014

This is the first day of my three-day trek back to Illinois.  Today I flew from Queenstown, New Zealand to Sydney, Australia.  The flight was several hours and about 1,200 miles.  When I got to Sydney about 3:30 pm, I checked into my hotel at the airport then took a subway downtown.  The car I road in looked new.  Parts of the subway system looked new and other parts looked like vintage 1940’s, but always clean. Today was Australia Day.  I first stopped at Cockle Bay (Darling Harbor) where there would be fireworks after sundown.  I walked around the crowd, had dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe and listed to some music before leaving for Sydney Cove (Sydney Harbor) to see the famous Sydney Opera House and bridge crossing the bay.  It was fun and I wish I had more time to stay to enjoy all of the festivities. I took the subway back to my hotel for an early night.

Picture of crowds in Sydney, Australia on Australia Day
Australia Day
Picture of Cockle Bay Wharf on Australia Day
Cockle Bay Wharf
Picture of subway car
Sydney Subwar Car
Picture of concert on Australia Day
Australia Day Concert

 

Picture of Sydney Opera House
Sydney Opera House

 

Pacifica Trip Diary – Day 20

Day 20: January 27, 2014

Today I left Sydney on Korean Air for Inchon, South Korea, the second leg of my trip.  The flight was about 10 hours.  We were treated very well, two meals, snacks, real silver ware and wine with our dinner.  There was plenty of electronic entertainment and opportunities to charge notebooks, e-readers, etc.

The airport at Inchon is like a combination of Rodeo Drive, Michigan Avenue and Fifth Avenue.  They had a small string ensemble playing, and fun things to learn and do at the Korean cultural store.  The only thing I didn’t see was a movie theater.

I spent the night in a hotel in Inchon.  It was a more traditional South Korean establishment with slippers inside a vestibule leading to another door into the bedroom.  Shopping around the hotel was not like the airport.  I would have liked to explore Inchon and Soul but didn’t have the time. But what I saw was intriguing.

Picture of piano at Inchon airport
Music at Inchon Airport
Picture of stores at Inchon airport
Inchon Airport
Picture of slipers in hotel room
Sky Hotel Room
Picture of street in Inchon
Shopping in Inchon

Pacifica Trip Diary – Day 18

Day 18: January 25, 2014

This morning I was greeted to a large market around the lake in Queenstown.  Artisans brought their handicraft and the prices were much more reasonable for many of the same items I saw in stores throughout New Zealand.  They also had unique items.  It was quite fun looking at the wares and talking with the vendors.  Later there was music in a grassy area where people were taking in the sun.  A few other brave souls ventured into the lake swimming.

There was a hamburger place that was constantly busy called Ferberger.  The burgers were good.  They also had a bakery where the wares looked delicious.  I had a beef and cheese pie.  Meat pies are popular in New Zealand.

Today was my last full day in Queenstown.  Tomorrow I begin my three day trek back home.

Picture of bakery
Fergbaker
Picture of burger place
Fergburger
Picture of fancy soap
Soap

Pacifica Trip Diary – Day 17

Day 17: January 24, 2014

I cancelled the last two days of my hiking trip because of my sinus infection and stayed in Queenstown to recover.  I have been on antibiotics and needed the rest.  However, I couldn’t stay in my hotel room, as nice as it was for me.  I walked around the town some more and the lake taking pictures and enjoying the warm weather, about 18C or 68F.  I found a relatively old cemetery and took some pictures there.  It was interesting to note that the European settlement of New Zealand was much later than that in the United States so the grave sites don’t go back much before the 1860’s.

Picture of church
Anglican Church
Picture of Queenstown street
Shopping in Queenstown
Picture of tombstone
Queenstown Cemetery

Pacifica Trip Diary – Day 16

Day 16: January 23, 2014

Today we had the option of spending a free day in Queenstown or hiking.  I was fighting a sinus infection so decided to skip the hike.  It had rained the night before in Queenstown, but in the mountains it snowed leaving them speckled above a certain height, and this is their summer!

Queenstown is beautiful, vibrant, and full of young people.  It seemed to be a significant crossroad for New Zealand’s South Island.   The town has lots of restaurants, bars, and shops.  With it nestled on Lake Wakatipu, there are many water activities and in the winter, snow skiing.  I walked around the town most of the day then took a gondola midway up a mountain to catch the sunset.  All was working well until clouds started coming in and blocked out the sun during the early stages of sunset.  Oh well, the scenery was still beautiful.

Picture of Lake Wakatipu
View of Lake Wakatipu
Picture of snow on mountains
Freshly Snow Covered Mountains
Picture of sunset on Lake Wakatipu
Sunset on Lake Wakatipu
Picture looking down on Queenstown
Queenstown from Above