Ramblings of a much published New Zealand author

06 January 2013

Clifford Bay, Marlborough

This is Clifford Bay where it has been proposed that a new Cook Strait ferry terminal might be built. It is exposed to the north-east and the full force of wind and tide across the South Pacific. It is said that by putting the terminal here, an hour could be saved from the connexion across the strait between the North and South Islands.

The ferry trip, which is a notable tourist experience, would become a boring slog - especially into southerly winds to which this part of New Zealand is often exposed.

For the sake of that hour one of the prettiest ferry journeys in the world would be foregone. Travelling south, from the moment the ship enters Tory Channel until it arrives at Picton passengers are treated to a series of enchanting bays and hills as the Interislander makes its quiet, serpentine way to the terminal. Picton town is equally attractive and its pleasures would be lost to tourism as well as its economic life to the citizens. All for the saving of an hour blindly dedicated to commercial interests.

Shifting the Cook Strait ferry terminal from Picton to Clifford Bay would be like straightening the Leaning Tower of Pisa; it would turn a trip of a lifetime into meaninglessness.

© DON DONOVAN. donovan@ihug.co.nz 
www. don-donovan.blogspot.co.nz

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By Don Donovan