Published: April 4th 2010April 4th 2010
Wellington is a very windy city! So i tried to spend as much time as possible inside. Morv and I went to Te Papa, the national museum which was really interesting. It is the only museum in the world to have a collossol squid. It also had loads of maori relics including a life size meeting house and a room that simulates earth quakes which was a lot of fun.
We had to be up for 7am the next morning and we were taken to the interislander ferry. It took 3 hours to cross the Cook Strait to the South Island and we docked in a small town called Picton. The Kiwi bus had overbooked so some of us had to go on a 'shuttle' bus to Nelson which is about 2 hours away. It turned out that the bus was actually just a public bus and we didn't get to stop in any of the places the kiwi bus did on the way. 20 minutes into the journey we picked up a man who had schizophrenia or some mental disorder and as per usual he decided to sit in the seat across from me. I then had to spend
1.5 hours entertaing a delusional madman in the hope that he wouldn't turn psycho, at one point he tried to steal food out of Mary's bag, it was certainly an interesting ride.
On arrival to Nelson we found out we were staying at a place called Fern Lodge, which is part of a hotel and restaurant. We walked from the hostel to the centre of New Zealand which had great views of Nelson and the surrounding area. On the way back down we saw a Kauri tree but it wasn't very big. We then had a free beer tasting session at the restaurant of a selection of local beers, ales and ciders. Morv also won us a night out in Queenstown for her and 15 friends for a meal and free drinks in 9 different pubs and clubs. We ate in the restaurant that evening as they had a special for the kiwi bus. For six pounds we had a full roast beef dinner with all the trimmings including a yorkshire pudding and chocolate cake with ice cream for dessert.
We travelled to Westport via the Nelson Lakes national park, where we fed the ducks. Our hostel that
evening had a kitchen in our room so we did a group cook of pasta, which was a really fun activity to do together and it tasted pretty good as well.
On the way to Lake Mahinapua, we visited the pancake rocks which look like lots of stacked pancakes we also saw a seal colony, however in pictures the seals just look like large rocks. We stopped at a charity shop on the way to our accomodation as we were going to have a fancy dress party in the evening. The theme was Evolution, Circle of Life. So us four girls decided to go as the flintstones. Danny went as a cow and we helped him to make a costume out of an old bedding set. We had food included in our room price and it was an all you could eat buffet of steak, venison stew, potatoes and salads which was really tasty. We had a great night and Danny won first prize which was a canyon swing in Queenstown and us girls won a pole dancing lesson in Queenstown which should be a lot of fun.
Franz Josef Glacier was the next stop and was definately
a lot colder. We spent a full day on the ice doing a glacier hike which was really physically demanding, however we were given crampons for the ice which made walking a lot easier.
We drove to Wanaka and had lots of photo stops a long the way. Wanaka is a ski town and unfortunately we are a couple of months away from the ski season but its a great town anyway. We spent the afternoon at a local craft fair which had some really interesting items and we walked along the main high street.
Our next stop is Queenstown, the party capital of New Zealand and hopefully lots more exciting times.
There are more photos below