I should mention at this point I brought two books on this trip, “The Great New Zealand Cafe” and “Fleur”. The Cafe book lists character cafes throughout NZ and we’ve been visiting as many as possible since we arrived in 2010. On this trip we stopped at 13 out of 28 in South Island alone. This partly explains our sometimes erratic meandering but it actually has led us to some pretty cool places, such as the Port Royal Cafe in Port Chalmers. More on that in a moment.
“Fleur” was the second book I bought after we arrived in NZ (the Cafe book was the first). In case you’re not aware, books are extremely expensive here and paperbacks start at around $35 and go up from there. “Fleur” was a fascinating true story about Fleur Sullivan, an entrepreneurial young woman in the ’60s who has received numerous awards for her restaurants and contribution to tourism. I’ve been dying to meet her and today I had the pleasure of eating at Fleur’s Place in Moeraki.
Now back to the ridiculous schedule we set for ourselves for today. Up early to drive to Port Royal Cafe for a remarkable breakfast. I still dream about that bagel sandwich. I’m sure Jim feels the same about his french toast. Port Chalmers is a quaint working harbor. It’s what I thought Dunedin would be like and I wish we’d stayed here.
We drove back to Dunedin to see the newly opened Settler’s Museum (Toitu Museum) and decided to book a ride on the Taieri Gorge train. But we’d already made lunch reservations at Fleur’s Place back in Moeraki, an hour+ drive away. Lunch was fabulous, my dream come true as Fleur sat at our table and we chatted while we ate. I could have spent hours there taking pictures. Then we raced back to Dunedin for the train ride. Lovely, informative, restful. Back in town we had dinner at Circadian Rhythm Vegan Vegetarian Cafe where the ambiance was spartan but the food was really really good. Even Jim liked it.
Sorry about all the text but as you can see a lot happened today.