Blogger: Marie Barry
Greymouth was a wonderful stop on our trip, and we agreed that it warranted a two night stay. Immediately we got a creative and fun vibe from this town, and like most places in New Zealand, it had plenty of outdoor activities to keep the more adventurous visitors occupied.
In the town centre was a local art museum called the Left Bank Museum, which featured many paintings by New Zealand artists as well as a small collection of ornaments and jewellery, mainly created out of the local greenstone, jade. This free museum was well worth a visit. Afterwards we went to nearby Freddy’s for lunch, a unique café style restaurant with an upstairs view overlooking the busy street below. Here we got the chowder, which included baby prawns and calamari, and arrived with a side of garlic ciabatta – it was gorgeous.
One of the highlights of Greymouth was the Monteith’s Brewery. Monteith’s is a well established brewing company in New Zealand, and the original brewery in Greymouth gives you an opportunity to hear the history of the establishment, learn how the beer is produced, and best of all, taste a selection of their many beers. In order to fully appreciate the beer tastings we left the van parked up at our accommodation and cycled bicycles from the hostel instead.
On our second day, we started off with a morning kayak around the Greymouth wetlands. The hostel we were staying in (The Global Village) had free kayaks, and was situated on the banks of the river which made the excursion very accessible. It was a lovely peaceful kayaking trip as the waters were calm and there was no one else on the river. We did however meet a lot of river birds, as we explored the many winding routes through the wetlands.
Later that day we dove out to Point Elizabeth Walkway, about 5km out of town, and did one of the shorter treks, about 1 hour return. The walk took us along the coast to a lookout point, where we admired the crashing waves up and down the coast that seemed to stretch forever in each direction. We just about made it back to Jucy Josephine before the rain set in.
Feeling our tummies rumbling we headed to Ali’s Café for dinner. I had hoped to order a west coast speciality – Whitebait Patties – but it turned out that it was the off season for whitebait. Instead we both ordered the Moroccan Lamb Salad, and indeed it didn’t disappoint. Topped off with a coffee and afghan cookie, we were fed and happy.
As we left town the following day, we were content that we had done a bit of everything there was to do in Greymouth. Although we were sad to leave behind the great food and dynamic atmosphere, we were excited to be heading towards the next part of our adventure.