This blog on New Caledonia is for those of you who ever wondered what life on a tiny island in the South Pacific might be like. Tired of bracing winter winds, the stress of an inner city or simply dreaming of a life change? This is a blog about what happens when, in the words of Yogi Berra, "you come to a fork in the road, [and] take it".

30 May 2007

Fall and Winter in New Caledonia

Photos by Laurent Guiader, 2007.

Our seasons are "turned around" in the South Pacific (depending on your perspective). When all of you in the northern hemisphere are gearing up for summer, we in the southern hemisphere are gearing up for winter, which will be here around the 22nd of June.

Right now it is fall in New Caledonia and the days are still warm and sunny. We do have a little extra yard work (and a little extra help), but other than that it is hard to tell that it is fall.

What is winter like? Winter in New Caledonia is cooler than the rest of the year, but one cannot really call it winter. It is warmer than Paris' warmest days most of the time! Temperatures hover around 20°C, the days end earlier (around 17.30) and start earlier (around 5.30), but we have no snow, we have a little rain, and yes, we can manage without coats and hats and scarves.

Now - must get back to that yard work before someone pokes an eye out ...


Jo Pfaff said...

Love your yard boy!! He is getting so big!

Dave Thompson said...

Hi Julie - Greetings from the UK - love your blog and your family life way down there in NC.

I came across your blog while searching for info on this faraway French paradise which has fascinated me for years now.

Although I can't travel at the moment (I look after my disabled father) I DO plan to visit this place at some time in the future, and maybe stay for a while, too!

I have loved reading of your trips to the places I dream of, especially the Loyalty Islands. Fab!

On my office wall (I'm self-employed) I have mounted a LARGE 3-D colour relief map of New Caledonia, which I bought from IGN in France (Institut Geographique Nationale), so I can pinpoint each place you mention - from the lagoon of Noumea to the sliver of paradise that is Ouvea - all I have to do is look up from my PC!

Did you ever plan to visit the wilder North of the island? Is it accessable? I'm particularly struck by the Massif du Panie, on the far North east coast - where the mountains seem to drop right to the sea shore (at least according to my relief map!) Who lives up North? The Melanesians?

Strange, I could ponder all day on the different places of 'your' island...

Well, I hope you enjoy what remains of your stay there!

Regards, to all your family,

Julie said...

Thanks for your comments, Jo and Dave. :)

Am so pleased to hear that this little chipping away at life in New Caledonia is helpful, interesting, dream-inspiring, in some small way.

We've only been up to Hienghene in the north thus far, but it is certainly within the realm of possibility that we go up again and go somewhere further. I'll definitely let you know if we do.

Yes, Melanesians live in the north - as do Caledonians, but the north is wilder and less developed than New Caledonia's capital.

Wishing you and your father well, Dave, and you and your family well, Jo,


Julie said...

Hi, Dave - and everyone,

For stunning photos of the north of New Caledonia, including the massif de Mont Panié, see:

You'll feel like you are almost there.

My thanks to Sébastien of "5 minutes en Nouvelle Caledonie".