A Travellerspoint blog

Wanaka

Holiday homes for the stars

sunny 28 °C
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Today we headed to Wanaka, the journey from Franz Joseph took us along the Haast river which is one of the most scenic drives in NZ, beautiful mountain and lake views all the way, we stopped several times for photo opportunities. The weather was fantastic and got hotter the closer we got to Wanaka.

Wanaka itself is really picturesque and is actually becoming home to the stars with Tom Cruise recently purchasing land there. Once we arrived we all got changed and went for a quick dip in the very cold lake followed by a very cheap BBQ courtesy of the local church who'd setup next to the lake to raise money.

Everyone was pretty shattered and an early night was in order in prep for a big night in Queenstown. The following morning we headed to Puzzling World in Wanaka which was a right laugh, they had a maze, illusion rooms and puzzles to boggle your mind, I felt like a kid again going round the maze.

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Posted by ride165 23:49 Archived in New Zealand Comments (0)

Franz Josef

Icy

sunny 18 °C
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We arrived here severely hung over after the fancy dress party, we booked our glacier walk and picked up some stuff for tonights dinner, veggie curry, maybe not such a wise decision the night before going out on a half day walk! Myself, Noelle and Matt went out for a walk with MC to cheer her up, she'd had an email to say she's been rejected from 2 of her Uni choices. We stopped for a tasty hot chocolate and nattered away the afternoon. After dinner we were really tired and hit the hay ready for the early start.

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Getting out of bed was a chore but we woke to a glorious sunny blue skied day which is apparently is a rarity in these parts so we got lucky. We kitted up with our geek hiker boots and cramp-ons for the icy climb ahead. After a short walk up the virtually dry river bed we reached the foot of the glacier. Steps are hacked into the ice by the guides to aid the steep climb it is an amazing place to be and once you've cleared the first section it feels like you are in the middle of the arctic. I recommend it to anyone visiting this part of the world.

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The rest of my day has been spent updating this blog, looking forward to some food and a good sleep!

Posted by ride165 20:26 Archived in New Zealand Comments (0)

Westport & Lake Mahinapua

Crazy days

semi-overcast
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After having another night on the sauce myself and Ali decided that after our speedy hike we would go for a run to continue the routine. We checked into the Hostel while some of the bus went out on a jet boat that was supposed to be the best in the country but the guys said it wasn't worth the money. We got a great deal with the hostel as our group of 8 got a separate unit with it's own kitchen, lounge and dining area!

After the run we started dinner of chili con carne which turned out really well with Noelle making the best rice I've ever had, it melted in your mouth. I'm gonna get her to teach me!

That evening a few of the guys went off to the pub and managed to get free pitchers of beer from this crazy brewery owner who has a brand of beer called 'Good Bastard'. I missed out as I didn't think my liver could stand another hammering so I stayed in with MC and Noelle.

The next day we left for Lake Mahinapua but stopped about 200 yards from the hostel to visit the crazy brewery owner who was filming a TV ad for his beer so more free beer flowed and this was at 9am!

Tonight was the night for the fancy dress party, the theme being to dress as anything starting with the letter P, I decided to go as a Pikey and bought a suitably naff shirt and a nasty pair of cheap tracksuit bottoms which I would tuck into some white socks I borrowed. MC went as a Prostitute, Ali a Puff, Matt as Phantom of the Opera, Noelle a Pink Princess, Darren a Pirate and Ash just dressed in Pink, he owned nearly all his clothes already which is a little worrying. He is a legend though and have never met such a posh person before, he can drink like a trooper though, totally mental.

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Amongst the other outfits were, Presents, a Pina Colada, Pimps, a Pyromaniac, Peasant, Protester and Papa Lazarou from League of gentleman which was a really good effort and won the best costume, such a shame that the guy who won it is a complete tosser!

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Posted by ride165 18:33 Archived in New Zealand Comments (0)

Nelson

Beautiful


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As soon as we arrived in the South Island I could tell already how more picturesque it was than the north island. Everywhere you look there are stunning snow tip mountains and lakes. So pretty.

Our first stop on the South Island was Nelson. On our way to Nelson we stopped off in Marlborough for some wine tasting. Marlborough is the wine capital of New Zealand.

That evening me and Ali cooked up a massive plate of pasta in preparation for our big day out at Abel Tasman National Park then watched wedding crashers with the rest of the group followed by an early night.

Up at 6:20 to make sandwiches and get ready for our 7am pickup, there is a 1hr drive to the park then we had to take a water taxi up the coast of the park to our drop off point for the 4hr hike back through the park. On the way up we stopped off in a few of the many amazing bays along the coast. We also came across a huge pod of dolphins who were loving the speed of the boat and playing in it's wake, chasing and jumping out of the water, a truly amazing sight. It made the trip and we hadn't even started the walk yet!

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We got dropped of at Onetahuti bay where we ate one of the huge ham, tomato and avocado sandwiches we'd made, they tasted great, you have to try one. We then set off on the walk down the coastal track to Torrent bay which is supposed to take 4hrs but we marched it in 2.5hrs overtaking a couple that we on our boat who were dropped off at Bark bay further down the coast. The walk was amazing and took in some stunning coastal views.

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That night we ended up having a massive party in our room. Disgusting boxed wine is all the rage and after a few glasses it actually tastes OK! We went out to a great Irish bar with some traditional Irish music and dancing! Our Irish joker, Sean, was in his element. You would actually die from laughter even if you spent 1 minute in his company. Terrible language and constant jokes....brilliant!!!

Posted by ride165 18:16 Archived in New Zealand Comments (0)

River Valley & Wellington

Chill time & Party time

sunny 20 °C
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This is a secluded hostel in the middle of nowhere and a truly beautiful place to chill out which is exactly what some of us did. Our room looked out over the river with a steep hill and a waterfall directly ahead. There was a suspended 2-man trolley with pulley system to get across the river which was a laugh. The rest of the day was spent relaxing. That evening we had a wonderful roast dinner and whiled away the evening drinking dark n stormy which is a very nice combination of dark rum, ginger ale and lime.

The next day was in very similar to the last as we spent the morning chilling out with the afternoon taken up by the journey to Wellington. On our way to Wellington we stopped off and did a nice brisk 1 1/2 hour walk to an amazing water fall. I've lost count of the number of falls I've seen since traveling but each one is different and still very beautiful. We stopped here for lunch before continuing to Wellington.

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We arrived in Wellington (capital of New Zealand) on Friday night, got ready and went straight down to the hostel bar where we got completely smashed, what a great night out. The entire bus was out Wellington is amazing! Such a party city. The next day was spent recovering, shopping and preparing for Saturday night which turned out to be as crazy as Friday night.

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By the time Sunday arrived everyone was a mess and my liver was in danger of leaving my body of it's own accord. It's all good fun though. There is a group of 8 of us are really close now and its just so much fun! There is MC (Marie-Clair) Ali, Jenny, Darren, Ash, Matt and Noelle.

Monday saw an early start for the ferry to the 3 hr trip to the South Island at least I got to see United beat Blackburn, sorry Mum :)

Posted by ride165 18:01 Archived in New Zealand Comments (0)

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