The South Island of New Zealand -winter 2015/16 travel blog

Te Papa Museum - very well done and a Must See

Parliment Library

World War I Memorial

When you come to Wellington be sure and go to the the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa. It is the national museum and is very well done. It will take you a half of day to see all the excellent exhibits - four solid floors of excellent history, botany, and Maori influence as well as excellent science exhibits on tectonic faults, earthquakes, animals of New Zealand and the seas. One section was a reminder of the pest that possum's have become as it described the 70 million possums and how they interfere with various aspects of the natural order of birds, flora and fauna and insects. The amazing thing is that this fantastic museum is FREE! Not to far away along the wharf from the museum you'll see the New Zealand Parliment and Parliment Library building. Tomorrow we are going to take the free tour of the Parliment buildings and learn some more NZ history.

In every town, large and small, that we have entered in New Zealand there is a place the town has designated as a memorial for World War 1 and 2. The Kiwi's call WW1 the Great War and WW2 is called the World War.

The relief sculpted on the monument in the photo is an example of a similar relief we saw last year at the War Memorial at the Auckland Domain so we are assuming it is the same artist. Each side of the relief depicts a different battle or war era. In a number of the memorials in towns throughout the country, the names of Kiwi's who were awarded the Victoria Cross - the highest medal England presented at the time and one created by Queen Victoria to acknowledge exceptional valore serving country and fellow soldiers , are engraved. In The Great War, New Zealand had more causalities per capita of participation than any other part of the British Empire. For such a small country they paid a very high price in wars very, very far away. It is very touching to see how widespread the tributes are and the care and detail each community puts in to making the memorial a place of beauty and reflection - very well kept up and honored even to this day. Steps today 18,469 - no driving or riding.

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