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Build Up To Captain Cook's 250th Anniversary Begins

Build Up To Captain Cook's 250th Anniversary Begins

December 4, 2014

One of the great milestones in global exploration will be celebrated in the Marlborough Sounds early next year.

Luxury Lodge, Bay Of Many Coves, is beginning the build-up towards the 250th anniversary of Captain James Cook’s circumnavigation of New Zealand.

Cook sighted landfall off Poverty Bay in 1769 as he was searching for the great southern continent and, early the following year on January 16, he sailed into Ship Cove in Queen Charlotte Sound.

He was to make the cove his base, spending over 100 days there. During his three voyages to New Zealand he visited Ship Cove on five occasions as it provided safe anchorage, food and fresh water, a place to relax and timber to repair his ships, the Endeavour and the Resolution.

Luxury Lodge, Bay Of Many Coves, is only a few breaths of wind away from Ship Cove and, next month, it begins the build-up to the 250th anniversary in 2020.

Co-owner of Bay Of Many Coves, Murray McCaw, is offering a special Captain Cook Package between January 5 and 25, 2015, which includes a voyage of discovery to Cook’s landing place.

The trip on the Dolphin Watch from Picton to Bay Of Many Coves will take guests via Motuara Island where Cook proclaimed New Zealand a British Territory and Ship Island to view the Cook Monument. On the way they’ll experience wonderful and rare wildlife including dolphins, seals and native birds.

“We want people to experience a unique part of our history. While Cook spent nearly a year exploring the New Zealand coastline during his three voyages, it was in the Marlborough Sounds that he made his home,” Murray says.

“He called his base a ‘very snug cove’ and accurately described the three or four hundred local inhabitants as they ‘dispersed along the shores in search of their daily bread which is fish and fern roots.’”

“We believe the Marlborough people are the most appropriate to celebrate their heritage.”

The Captain Cook Package, for two nights or more, is designed to not just be a visual spectacle but to satisfy the taste buds.

Guests will have the opportunity to sample a special Spruce Beer, made from Captain Cook’s traditional recipe. Cook was the first to brew beer in New Zealand using molasses, manuka and rimu leaves.

The same traditional ingredients are used in this distinctive craft ale which has won nine brewing awards.

They will also be served deliciously prepared pork cuts from the Captain Cooker – a descendent of the English pig that James Cook introduced to New Zealand. Bay Of Many Coves’ award winning cuisine will also include fish and fern roots.

“The opportunity to celebrate our past must encompass all our senses, those of taste, touch, sight, sound and hearing,” Murray says. “We will provide a holiday of history, heritage, holistic treatment and sheer happiness.”

As chairman of the Luxury Lodges of New Zealand, Murray sees Bay Of Many Coves as the ultimate gateway experience for New Zealand and international tourists.

His vision of the Marlborough Sounds – and Bay Of Many Coves in particular – is a place where history and geography meet and where evolution and the environment is preserved in the stillness and serenity of the location.


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