Blogs from Queenstown, Otago, South Island, New Zealand, Oceania - page 7

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Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Queenstown December 14th 2005

Queenstown 20 years ago is nothing like the Queenstown of today. We remembered a small village with a few streets, the lake, and the streamship Earnslaw. Now, it's a booming tourist town hawking every extreme sport option that you can imagine. As one of our guide books stated, "You can always hear a scream in the air in Queenstown". You have your choice of tandem skydiving, hang gliding, paragliding, wire jetting, 4 different types of bungy jumping, canyoning, canyon swinging, jet boating, white water rafting, white water surfing, and the list goes on and on. There are innumerable ways to spend your money (all options are very expensive) and possibly die in the process. Yesterday, we saw a video advertising downhill biking on a snowy ski slope!! Everyone on the video was falling down within a ... read more
Steamship Earnslaw
Queenstown - Lake Wakatipu
Ron & Anna's Cottage

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Queenstown December 14th 2005

I’ve started a new page, because this morning’s adventure pretty much requires it’s own page. I went skydiving. I made the decision the night before and gave myself that evening to groan about how expensive it was. But now it was time to be excited and not think about the price. I was picked up outside my hostel at 8am and went on a 45-minute drive to the town of Glenarchy where I would be jumping. I was the only one there that morning, besides a girl from California who was riding up with me but not jumping. It was another clear day and the scenery was amazing (see the pictures). California girl, my tandem partner (no they don’t let you go alone), and I squished into a little plane, and the pilot flew us up ... read more
Landing
Solo jumper

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Queenstown December 14th 2005

Ok, so the location of this entry is actually a lie. I’m no longer in the South Island, or even New Zealand. I’m actually back home, watching the snow fall and thinking of waxing my skis. But in any case, I WAS on the South Island-most definitely! And it was fantastic. So, if anyone still reads this, here is the story of my last two weeks in New Zealand. (broken into several pages to make it easier to read) It was raining as I flew out of Auckland, but 2 hours later the clouds were gone, allowing for a spectacular view of the mountains as the plane landed in Queenstown. The good weather remained for my entire visit, even on the notoriously wet West Coast. (So, for those of you who are wondering, I do have ... read more
Queenstown afternoon
Evening in Queenstown
Sunset 2

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Queenstown December 14th 2005

Arrived in the bustling adrenaline capital of New Zealand and booked into the Discovery Lodge Hostel. This was another purpose built brand new facility much like Base with 8 bunkbeds to a room and ensuite Shower facilities. After dinner and a quick browse around town, we joined the Stray gang in the Altitude Bar under the hostel and took good advantage of the two for one offers on wine and Export Gold. Met up with some of the guys from the previous bus who were still in Queenstown, Mat,Glen,Rob,Sally to name a few, and carried on to the World Bar, a little club up the road. Partied late into the night/morning so it was a good thing that the Quad Bike trip we'd booked wasn't until the following afternoon! This was such good fun and though ... read more
J's Paraglide.
Lins Luge
Shotover Jet

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Queenstown December 13th 2005

So when I went travelling my mum said I should go and do whatever I want... except a bungy jump. Why this was singled out I don't know. Fortunately the idea didn't appeal to me that much anyway. However, it turns out that it's against New Zealand law to visit Queenstown without jumping off something really high, so we opted for the world's largest swing. Basically you're on a bit of rope that's tied to a cable across a big canyon. You leap off a cliff, freefall the first 60m straight down until the rope becomes taut and brings you swinging across the bottom of the canyon a hundred metres below just nine metres above the river. It's fairly terrifying ( for me anyway ). Sara, who implicitly trusts anyone with a staff T-shirt, went for ... read more
We've got a runner...
The jump platform from across the canyon
Nick hires the equipment

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Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Queenstown December 11th 2005

Hi folks, here goes for a pretty lengthy entry covering my previous 10 days in NZ. North Island I arrived on 2nd December, early morning, and having picked up a car headed north from Auckland into the Bay of Islands area. The first thing I really noticed about this country is how green it is. A lot of the scenery reminds me of the more rural areas of England, except here it is often more dramatic, and with better weather of course. In the bay area I had my first go on a jetbike and it was great fun. Nearly came off it a couple of times but made sure I held on 'cos the water wasn't anywhere near as warm as in Australia. Also went quad biking on the same day as you'll see from ... read more
Quad biking
Devil's bath
Scary!

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Queenstown December 9th 2005

It feels really funny to be writing this all over again especially when it happened more than a year ago. But i reckoned since i've got the photos, why not? It was last June, 2004. Boy was i excited at the thought of going NZ for my FIRST EVERY FREAKING JOB ASSIGNMENT. Perhaps it aint such a big deal to most peeps, but i worked really hard for the chance. Afterall, im not that super duper well to do to trot the world on a personal trip basis. It was a important assignment for me as well. Being the first one, i must say it went successfully enough to propel me to other overseas assignments til today. Still remembered it was Mich's 21st bday party. It clashed with my gala dinner night. Had to get Jackie's ... read more
Snow covered mountain tops
More awesome view
A walk around town

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Queenstown December 9th 2005

So we're up here in Queenstown for a whole week. We've decided to split this into at least a couple of blog entries because we're here for a while, there's lots to do and we might not survive all the activities. So far, summer has returned and Queenstown is looking pretty good. We've walked up and down the local hill/mountain, stopping for 5 rides on the tea-trays that pass for a luge at the top of the Skyline Gondola ( and to eat a chocolate eclair and brownie ). Today we went for a ride on the Shotover Jet, a water-jet powered speed boat that zooms you up and down the canyons of the Shotover River at 80kph with lots of 360 degree spins and such like. Anyway, having broken ourselves in gently we now have ... read more
Yeah yeah, the view's lovely, where's my eclair
Finally Sara gets a decent car

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Queenstown December 8th 2005

Not that you can really see me, but the following link is to a couple of pictures from white water rafting. Go to: http://rafting.co.nz/index.cfm/searchImages Then enter December 1st for the date. Go to page 26. The pictures of our raft are 51218526, 51218527, 51218528. I am in the second row closets to the camera. This is not where we got stuck. This was the last rapid. I am still working on finding the pictures from sea kayaking in Abel Tasman. Enjoy!!! ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Queenstown November 30th 2005

Hello all! Let me pick up where I left off. After recovering from the sea sickness, I boarded a bus the following morning to Punakaiki. Now, most people make this a quick 40 minute stop over, but I decided to stay the night. As you read, you will understand why. This was my vacation from my vacation. First of all, the bus ride was again amazing. The roads curve and cut through the mountains and forests and you see rivers and waterfalls along the way. It truly is breathtaking. Even when I know I have a full day on the bus I am excited to see the countryside. I just can't get enough! We pulled into Punakaiki and I didn't realize how small it was. There were three buildings in town - a cafe, art gallery ... read more




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