Launched in 2006 but suffered from problems during construction and was not commissioned until 2010, two years later than planned. Costing around $110 million NZD she is not cheap, but her excellent indoor-outdoor flow, large deck space and sea views makes her pretty cheap compared with the Auckland house prices these days.
Surprisingly enough the Otago was possibly my favourite ship of the day. Lacking the missile systems and "big-badda-boom" of some of the other ships I visited it still had a "kicking butt" charm to it. The ship (and it's crew) also exuded a quiet confident vibe. In terms of access to the ships internal areas it was second only to the ROKS Chungbuk and we were able to have quite a look around the ship.
|Stolen from the NZ Navy here is a shot of the HMNZS Otago and the HMNZS Wellington, HMNZS Pukaki, HMNZS Rotoiti, HMNZS Hawea, HMNZS Taupo and HMNZS Manawanui.|
|Despite being a relatively small ship, it is still a 'big' thing.|
|Once on board we headed up the side of the vessel|
|To the bow where could see up to the bridge|
|And the main armament of the Otago, a single remote controlled Rafael Typhoon 25 mm stabilised naval gun. The gun can maintain groupings of 250mm on a target up to 1,000 metres away!||.|
|From the bow we headed down the centre of the to the back end (checking out a few of the sights along the way including some fairly spacious crew quarters off "Castle Street"). Here some of the crew were showing off their damage control gear.|
|Then another wander around and back up through the hanger to the landing pad at the rear of the Otago where our Super Seasprite SH-2G(I) helicopters can land.|
|Just in case the chopper pilot isn't sure where he/she is landing....|