Saturday, August 29, 2009
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Friday, August 14, 2009
Wenesday morning’s alarm went off at 5:30 am so I could catch an 8:30 flight down to Queenstown. The bus drive from ChristChurch to Queenstown is 7-8 hours which is long, but when you want to see the countryside it is a great, cheap way to travel. By plane it takes just under an hour. Since I am only spending a little over a week in the South this trip, I wanted to take advantage of cheap one-way flights so I grabbed a flight down to Queenstown for one leg, and will bus it back for the other leg. Great idea…except that flights into Queenstown are often a game of rush & roulette as it is common for the finicky weather to defer a lot of air traffic. My flight was delayed 2 hours and the weather decided not to lift as expected at take off, so we had to land at an airport in a very southern NZ city called Dunedin. There we were greeted by coach buses that would take us on a 3 ½ hour drive back up to Queenstown. My 9:35 arrival time and day in Queenstown turned into a 5:30 arrival time and a very hungry me. I also missed out on some great aerial views and photos from the plane due to the weather. Looking at it positively, I was able to see much more of the South Island than I had planned which sure didn’t disappoint, and I have a great excuse to come back down here again!
Thursday I took a day trip from Queenstown to Milford Sound, it's in Fjiordland National Park a very preserved and protected part of the country, and the drive over takes you right through the beautiful mountains. The road we took had been closed the previous 2 weeks due to a massive avalanche that blocked the access. I saw first hand how destructive one of those can be! I then boarded a small cruise boat and floated through the Sounds past spectacular waterfalls & we even saw some fur seals. It was an unforgettable day. Today (Friday) was my day to explore the city. I took a long walk along the edge of Lake Wakatipu and got some great shots of the Mountain view. I also picked a lunch spot right on the shore & did a little window shopping. Here are a few shots from the past few days, mostly from Milford Sound & Queenstown.