We left Lake Hawea and journeyed to Ophir for new year's eve, with our first stop en route being Mt. Difficulty winery. It's a shame you can't take a photo of the amazing surrounds of Mt. Difficulty without a particularly unattractive shed getting in the frame, but such is life - not all sheds can be as great as the one you're about be introduced to.
Next stop was Clyde, one of my new favourite small towns in New Zealand. I was slightly concerned when halfway through my giant South Island cheese roll (honestly, were those large cubes of butter really necessary?) Alex pointed out that the damn could break at any time and the whole town would be in major trouble.
I hope I didn't build it up too much.
Other highlights of Clyde included the angel on top of the war memorial and the latticework on the verandah of the Four Square.
We got to our little old cottage in Ophir in time for a cup of tea and some of chocolate slice the woman who owns the cottage had left. Ophir is on the Otago rail trail and is basically just one long street, but it has some pretty nice old buildings and seems to have had a bit of a rebirth thanks to the rail trail. The cottage we stayed in was old and so cutely decorated on the inside, a bit like an old lady lived there, but cute all the same. There were chickens in a big long coop that ran the length of the driveway, and a beautiful little garden.
After our tea and slice, we drove about 25 minutes to St Bathans to see some friends who have only very recently returned from overseas. I'd never heard of St Bathans before but it was very cool.
There we were, driving along empty country roads when suddenly we arrived in this buzzing little one road old gold mining town where the mine has turned into a lake.
Hannah's Dad and step-mother own the old constable's cottage and up behind that are the ruins of the old school. Everything is old, just the way I like it.
We had beer and chips outside the Vulcan Hotel which looked like a pretty popular new year's eve spot for the locals.
And I think that's enough for today. Stay tuned for Part 3.