I have traveled the west coast of the South Island a few times and only once have I experienced sunshine. Sunshine that changed everything ... I didn't recognise the chocolate-box-pretty coastline that was revealed by the sun. It was shock and awe on a grand scale.
It happened again today. We set off in the little red car, leaving from Wanaka about 10. We drove west ... climbing hills, turning 35km per hour corners, sometimes constantly negotiating those tight corners, admired so many lakes and rivers. Then finally we reached The Gates of the Haast and wandered on out to the West Coast ... where the actual coast was waiting. Naked in the sun. No clouds. No torrential rain. No sandflies.
Just. Extreme. Beauty. Today there was more than 250kms of it.
Below is a small taste. We forgot to take notes on the 'where' of the photographs ... just to give you a small idea of how mindblown we were. I think this might be Maori Bay, as per our road atlas but anyway ... a beautiful beach, someplace on the West Coast of New Zealand.