Birdling’s Flat is pretty much off the map of the casual tourist to the South Island. You can’t go into the water as it’s far too rough and choppy, the wind coming up from Antartica can at times be bone chilling. That doesn’t mean it’s not worth a visit, as I did with a group of friends while living in Christchurch. The beach is known for having raw gemstones lying about: agates, quartz, and jasper mostly. Not knowing what I was looking for, I’m sure I passed by a veritable treasure!