Desi Girl Traveler: Trigger-Happy at Te Papa & Finding Zealandia!

MissMalini , 28 Feb 2012
Te Papa
Te Papa
Wellington, New Zealand
Wellington, New Zealand

Now I’m not your typical museum junkie. I have a short attention span so I find interactive installations a lot more engaging! That is why I loved Te Papa. Wellington’s supremely impressive collection of history, art, fashion and Maori culture spread over six floors. Just wow. We went on a super bumpy ride experiencing all the adventure sports you can do here, stood in a house that mimics an earthquake, learned loads about animal life on the island and topped that up with a walking night tour of Zealandia, New Zealand’s very own Jurassic Park!

Museum Hotel
Museum Hotel

The Museum Hotel (where we stayed) was initially located on the other side of the road, moving to its present site in 1993. The hotel made a 120-metre journey down an inner city street on railway tracks.

Museum Hotel
Museum Hotel
view from Te Papa
view from Te Papa
God of earthquakes
God of earthquakes

In Māori mythology, Ruaumoko is the youngest son of Rangi and Papa, God of volcanoes and seasons. He has never been born and remains inside his mother’s womb. His movements are considered the cause of earthquakes!

earthquake house
earthquake house
Zebras were brought to NZ
Zebras were brought to NZ

In the mid-19th century, Governor George Grey imported zebras to New Zealand from his previous posting in South Africa, and used them to pull his carriage on his privately owned Kawau Island.

extinct animals
extinct animals

Haast’s Eagle was a species of massive eagles that once lived on the South Island of New Zealand. The species was the largest eagle known to have existed. Haast’s Eagles preyed on large, flightless bird species, including the moa, which was up to fifteen times the weight of the eagle.

giant squid
giant squid

In February 2007 the colossal squid was caught accidentally by the boat San Aspiring, in the Southern Ocean. Te Papa’s colossal squid is female, its eyes are the largest of any known animal − the size of soccer balls.

whale skeleton
whale skeleton
Maori sleeping house
Maori sleeping house
Maori face tattoos
Maori face tattoos

The Māoriare the native or indigenous Polynesian people of New Zealand. They arrived in New Zealand from eastern Polynesia some time before 1300 CE. The Moko is similar to an identity card, or passport. For men, the Moko showed their rank, their status and their ferocity, or virility.

war canoe
war canoe
keeping busy on ship
keeping busy on ship

Europeans who decide to make a new home in New Zealand embark on the longest journey of migration in human history. In the 19th century this voyage was made by ship. Most who left Europe in the 19th century opted for North America – a shorter, cheaper passage across the Atlantic. In 1850 this took 10 days and cost £4. By comparison, the journey to New Zealand took from 75 to 120 days and cost at least £15.

fashion
fashion
making lace
making lace
would you wear this bikini?
would you wear this bikini?
LBD love
LBD love
Vogue, NZ
Vogue, NZ
cool TV
cool TV
LP record
LP record

Much love to our super-informed museum guide Amiee, she was very sweet, had purple hair and knew everything there was to know about the museum. #Awesome.

MissMalini and Amiee
MissMalini and Amiee

Remember when the Earth used to look like this?
Zealandia
Zealandia

Neither do I, but it’s true. 200 million years ago we were one giant chunk of land that drifted apart (as continents do) to form the globe as we know it today (if you didn’t know that you missed something pretty major in 1st grade.) Zealandia is New Zealand’s attempt at creating a sort of Jurassic Park (minus the dinosaurs, don’t worry) to preserve their flora and fauna. It’s a pretty mind blowing to experience by night or day and if you’re lucky you’ll spot a Kiwi bird!

very Jurassic Park-ish!
model of extinct animals: very Jurassic Park-ish!

We went for a night tour through the park in search of the super rare Kiwi bird; and as the park ranger put it, “most Kiwi bird’s haven’t seen another Kiwi bird!” We were super lucky and spotted 3! (The one I got a fuzzy picture of is known as Flip Flop.)

I saw a Kiwi!
I saw a Kiwi!

Peak into a stunning world of petals, clay, fire and orchards for this lyrical love story about what happens when dad accidentally sells you to the Devil.

And finally to throw a little theatre in the mix, Nowshad took me to see a play called The Wild Bride. We both thought it was a spectacular production set to live blues and bluegrass music.

More pictures you say? Here you go! xoxo

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