Sunday, July 20, 2008

Trip to Matiu Somes Island

So my birthday this year was on a Tuesday - so Rich and I decided to both take the day off work and head over to Matiu Somes Island which I had wanted to visit for AGES!

Anyway for the first time in ages, my birthday was a nice clear summer day, as you can see from these photo's of the waterfront.

Here's a photo taken from the ferry - sky was a bit dark - but it didn't rain!
When you first arrive at Island you are met by a DOC worker who asks you to go to the "Whare Kaiore" to check your shoes for seeds and you back packs for seeds and any other creatures that may be with you. Matiu Somes Island is a bit of a sanctuary for wildlife so obviously they don't want any nasty creatures or plants getting in!
You also get a brief history of the Island - which includes unwell immigrants being kept on the Island in the early days of settlement and "illegal aliens" being kept on the Island during the second world war.
The also used to quarantine stock out on the island at some point in it's history.

There are a few DOC workers that live on site at Matiu Somes Island - so I guess this is their firewood..

Heading up to the highest point of the island to see the view.

The old bunkers on the Island that were built to protect Wellington from a Japanese invasion - apparently after the war the government sold the actual guns to the Japanese for scrap metal. The irony!

Me looking at the DOC map of the Island - totally not posed at all....

Historic Tramway near the light house - the DOC worker didn't actually tell us anything about this when we first arrived on the Island so I have no clue what it was actually used for!

View of the light house - which really could use a new coat of paint...

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