Walking New Zealand

New Zealand Walk: Sea lionsand seals an attraction at Sandfly Bay.

- By Yvonne van Aerden

We had never visited Sandfly Bay which is about 20 minutes from Dunedin and is a 3km return walk taking one hour 30 minutes, plus the time you spend down on the beach. So one day we thought we would go and explore Sandfly Bay.

This was not a huge walk but sounded interestin­g. From the carpark we went across some private farmland and then reached the huge sand dunes, from where you could see down to the beach (it was still a fair distance away).

There had been rain the day before

so the sand was a little easier to walk on, we did not sink down so far into the sand

The sea and the cloudy sky were beautiful blues. To our amazement we saw the seals and sea lions in the middle of the beach basking in the sun and also playing with each other. We heard noises behind us as well in the sand dunes and saw flippers waving as the seals and sea lions were also high up in the dunes amongst the beach grasses.

You could see the tracks from the seals and sea lions heading up to the dunes.

None of us were brave enough to go and investigat­e, we were all happy to just see the flippers waving at us on the beach. We kept a good distance as the seals and sea lions can move really quickly and can be dangerous.

After many photos we returned the same way we had come down to the beach. It would still be a while before the yellow eyed penguins returned from the sea and we thought we would save that for another time.

We went up the sand dunes this time to return to the carpark and it felt like you took one step forward and one and a half steps back on the sand.

Walking on the sand back up the dunes was a very good work out for your calf muscles. The walk up and down the sand dunes were so worth the views and seeing all the seals and sea lions was also such a bonus. A great afternoon for us all.

 ??  ?? Above: A broad view of Sandfly Bay.
Above: A broad view of Sandfly Bay.
 ??  ?? Below left: Seals and sea lions rsting on the sand.
Below left: Seals and sea lions rsting on the sand.
 ??  ?? Below left: The track between the dunes down to the beach.
Below left: The track between the dunes down to the beach.
 ??  ?? Above right: Seals and sea lions resting on the sands.
Above right: Seals and sea lions resting on the sands.
 ??  ?? Above left: Stopping to enjoy the view.
Above left: Stopping to enjoy the view.

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