Published: December 28th 2007
December 23rd 2007
We hopped back on the bus and began to make our way down the west coast, it normally has really high rainfall but we were really lucky, the sun shined the whole time. We stopped at Greymouth that night where we did a brewery tour, i cant say i was blown away by the tour but we got to try out the beers for free at the end so it was all good ; ) had a bbq and a few drinks that night.
Continued to follow the coast down towards Franz Joseph where we would stop the night... this journey started to uncover the landscape youd expect of NZ... it just gets more and more dramatic as you head further south, rugged cliffs, forrests, mountains and clear blue lakes.
We stopped at a goldmining town called Ross on the way down... also stopped at another little village which had only three permanent residents! they even had their own pub... bet that was rocking on a friday night! The whole village was owned by one family! although it doesnt surprise me much... there are so many really remote places over there. We went in the village museum, basically the family were
hunters, the place was full of stuffed animals and skins, they showed us a dvd about the way in which deer etc... were introduced into the bush years ago because NZ didnt have any native animals, but the animals ruined the landscape and had to be captured, they began by shooting them one by one but they eventually realised that they could make money by farming them and began to catch them alive. The tour guide was an interesting character... he used to have the dangerous job of jumping out of a helicopter over rough terrain, onto the deer's back long enough to tie it up to bring it home, not for the faint hearted! Crazy kiwi's eh! There were some cute little possum's there too... we were feeding them golden grahams... a bit worrying when we looked on the menu to see 'possum burger', we obviously had a hand in fattening them up for christmas!
We stopped along the way down to view the rugged coastline and the seals lazing on the rocks. Finally arrived at Franz Joseph in time to do the glacier hike, what a sight to behold... its massive! They had carved steps into the face
of it to make it easier to climb, but the weather was wet and windy which made it tougher and some of the crevices were really tight to get through... it was an amazing experience though... not to be missed.
The next day we would head down towards Queenstown... in my opinion the best place i went to in NZ, although most people say that... its just really buzzing... good nightlife and full off action packed activities... of which i was soon to find out ; ) Just before we arrived in Queenstown we were stopping at The Original AJ Hackett Bungee sight... The Kewarra Bridge. The driver 'Ryan' gave us the opportunity to do the jump whilst we were there... id always wanted to do one but felt sick and shaky at the thought of it... i knew id regret it if i didnt so agreed to do it, felt better when a couple of others on the bus were doing it too. We got ourselves weighed and checked in... no going back now... the rest of the bus were watching us too so we had to go through with it... god ive never been so scared in my
life! 43 meters down! I vowed to myself i would jump on the guys count of three... if i didnt go then i never would, i also vowed that i wouldnt look down... but i got up there and dont think i took my eyes off the water for a second! I slowly waddled my way to the edge and waved at the camera... it makes me nervous just thinking about it now : ) He started to count 1... 2... 3... although apparently i jumped on 2! I was that eger to get it over with! It was the most exhilerating experience of my life, you feel so free when you jump... like youre staring danger in the face, i was worried i would be so scared that i wouldnt enjoy but as soon as i jumped i loved every second! It goes so quick though you hardly have chance to think. I screamed the whole way down. When you finally stop bouncing some guys in a boat pull you down, they told me to stand up and take the rope etc off so i tried but my legs were so shaky i fell back down... crazy times! I
would jump at the chance to do another one now though... literally : 0
Whilst waiting to jump i had seen Ryan running up towards the bus... it turned out that he had locked my friend maria in there ha! I had wondered where she was but was too busy with the bungee! She had fallen asleep on the bus and woken up to find it locked and no-one there... poor thing... i had to laugh when Ryan said he found her pacing up and down the isle. She said some guy had come over to the bus to help... the window was open very slightly and he had encouraged her to try and squeeze out... ha ha... just my sense of humour but couldnt stop laughing at the thought of finding her stuck in the window on our return ; ) She saw the funny side too : p
We went into Queenstown for a drink that night, it was a laugh, had tea at this place called FERGBURGER, oh my god... hand on heart i can honestly say they do the best burgers in the world... ever!!! You must go if you ever go to Queenstown, and they
will fill you for a week!
There are more photos below