Sunday, December 17, 2017

South Island Last Days

Hiked around the Hokitika Gorge. Beautiful baby blue shade of water and fern filled forests. Watched our final sunset from Hokitika in the West Coast.  Then traveled over Arthur’s Pass and saw lots of Rata trees in full bloom (the Kiwi Christmas tree). Hiked amongst the huge boulders at Castle Hill before returning to Christchurch for flight home.  Amazing trip exploring the South Island of New Zealand!  














Saturday, December 16, 2017

Glacier Country

The West Coast provides access and prominent views of the largest glaciers in NZ - Fox and Franz Josef.  They run down the western slopes of Mt Cook.  Hiked on the Fox Glacier, an awesome adventure exploring ice caves and crevasses.  















Mt Aspiring National Park

Mt Aspiring NP provides a beautiful backdrop for The little town of Wanaka.  Colorful lupines are in bloom and the streams and lakes are crystal clear.  Visited the historic Cardrona Hotel and Wanaka Lavender Farm before heading to the West Coast.  














Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Queenstown

The scenery around Queenstown is spectacular with The Remarkables range towering over Lake Wakatipu. Visited the Kawarau Bridge which is the birthplace of commercial bungee jumping.  Hiked around Moke Lake and explored the Glenorchy-Paradise area which was the backdrop for some of the LOTR movie scenes.   Visited the Gibbston Valley Winery and home to New Zealand’s largest wine cave.  










Monday, December 11, 2017

Fiordland National Park

Explored Fiordland NationalPark including a flyover Doubtful & Dusky Sounds and an overnight cruise on Milford Sound. Saw Dusky Dolphins, Fur Seals and even spotted the Fiordland Crested Penguin.  Due to heavy rainfall, waterfalls were flowing everywhere!!!