New year (2)

Spinnaker with stars at dusk just before sunrise

Arriving at the south island

A view to the Marlborough sounds

Welcoming at south island by a seal right at our boat

Early morning at our anchorage yesterday

A seal taking his morning bath

Our first anchorage at the South Island, Tonga query, Tonga Island in the background on the left

Typical hiking

View from a lodge in the bush where we had morning coffee

New Year

It is time to say goodbye. Goodbye to the year 2014, which started and ended for me in New Zealand. One year ago it was short before my trip home to LA and Munich, now it's at the beginning of the trip around the south island of New Zealand. Both full of excitement. I have enjoyed each and every day of my time so far in New Zealand, especially this year. During the time since my friend and her boyfriend came 2 weeks ago we have seen such a diverse nature, met lovely people (not only our friends but also complete strangers), saw and heard beautiful wildlife (dolphins, penguins, seals, birds…), did amazing hikes, had great food, relaxed, had wonderful sailing (and motoring ;-)….the list goes on forever. Nature changes between rainforest, europe and south sea with the most beautiful beaches I have seen on this whole trip. Everyday I fall more in love with New Zealand, especially while exploring it from the sea. It is hard to express my feelings of happiness and joy that I have here: about our wonderful Kiwi friends, other sailor friends, local people (who even escort us out of a bay by playing the trumpet) and all that I have written above. 
So it comes at no big surprise that I am looking forward to an exciting 2015 with 5 more months in Kiwi-land and the exciting and challenging trip down south into the storm area. Also I am very much looking forward to sailing to Australia - a continent which I already have visited for a month and fell in love with over 20 years ago. And in-between: photo shooting with Alita in front of an active volcano in Vanuatu. These for sure will be my personal highlights. 

I wish you all a good start into a healthy and exciting New Year. May you come a step closer to your dreams!


Here are some pictures of the last 2 weeks. You find all the pictures online at

Rounding Cape Reinga!

A sand dune flowing into the water just like a glacier in Patagonia. This is at Cape Reinga, already in the Tasman Sea

Alita in Hokianga Harbour - the only sailboat by far, a real attraction for the locals, who very rarely see a sailor come in over the sandbank, a very dangerous entry. In the background you can see the sand dune which we walked up to the very top and then jumped down. Soo much fun….

New Zealand's biggest Kauri tree

…and the four sisters

…and the second largest Kauri tree

View over the Waipoua National Reserve where you find the most Kauri trees

Alita in Hokianga harbor

Found in the countryside at a gas station:

Alex' farewell - so special! Thanks Alex!


Safely arrived in Tonga...

Ahhh, well, no. At Tonga yes. Tonga Island, where seals live, is right in front of us. One seal greated us as we arrived. Underway today we saw 2 whales: a fin of one just behind the boat and a couple of huge blows far away.
So where are we? Tonga Island in Golden Bay, South Island New Zealand. We sucessfully crossed the cooks strait. Ah, for my dear friend Mary: we sailed the Tasman Sea down on the westcoast of the northern island wirh the SPINNAKER up for one day. Then we had to take it down because of no wind, meaning we motored for one more day. Only crossing of Cooks Strait did we have wind and wave- where nothing was predicted.
Pictures follow soon.