Page 5 of Tofor85 Travel Blog Posts

Oceania » Australia » Victoria » Melbourne November 12th 2014

Geo: -37.8143, 144.963What a trip it's been. I can't recommend the South Island of New Zealand enough. Especially for fellow Australians, go now! It's right on our doorstep.Stoked to be engaged. Hope I never have to go through that again!All that's left to do now is dream about the next trip.Nat's thinking weddings now, I'm thinking honeymoons. The Galapagos Islands?Time will tell ;)... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Christchurch November 11th 2014

Geo: -43.5316, 172.637We woke to a home cooked breakfast; bacon, sausages, eggs, tomatoes, mushrooms, home made fruits, cereals, juices, toast, and fresh coffee prepared by our friendly hosts. We shared the breakfast table with Christian and Helga, an Austrian couple around our age.By 10.30 we were packed and on the road bound for Christchurch airport. We elected to take the Scenic Inland Road on Route 72 via Methaven rather than the freeway. It was prettier sure, but did have us scrambling a little for time. The GPS lying to us about fuel near the airport didn't help our cause. We finally arrived at check in around 2.10 for a 4.00pm flight. We breathed a sigh of relief as our wine filled luggage scraped at 'around' the tolerated weight limit. Quickly, returning our vehicle keys, we cleared ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Lake Tekapo November 10th 2014

Geo: -44.0074, 170.483We had checked out of our hotel by 9, and headed to a nearby campground for todays hike. We would start with the popular Hookers Valley track and see how we went from there. Visibility was down from yesterday, and with mist and cloud looming, we elected to pack our rain jackets. It turned out to be a smart move. In the first instance, early in the walk it was just a battle against high winds, whipping through the valley and making it tricky to walk in a straight line. It was a pretty track, winding over hills and through the valley beneath huge snow coated mountains.There were three impressive swing bridges to negotiate along the way, suspended high over icy aqua rivers, each made to feel a little more perilous by the increasing ... read more
Duck Family
Hooker Valley Track Mount Cook
Hooker Valley Track Mount Cook

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island November 9th 2014

Geo: -43.6053, 170.296Today ended up being another wine tour! We set off from Queenstown around 9.30 picking up a maccas breakfast on the way to the Gibbston Valley wine region. We managed to tackle five wineries and a cheesery here between 10 and 2. In order; Peregrine Wines, Mount Rosa, Gibston Valley Cheese, Gibston Valley wines, Chad Farm and Waitiri Creek. In short, Peregrine sported a spectacular set up, with a decent wine selection, we left here with a Pinot Gris. Mount Rosa hardly looked like it was open or had a cellar door. We followed the arrows to a phone to call for assistance. Soon there after we were greeted by Jeremy and his friendly Dalmatian 'Muppet'. Muppet snoozed whilst we went through a tasting. These were probably my favorite wines of the day, all ... read more
Drive to Mount Cook
Pellegrin Vinyard
Gibston Valley

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Queenstown November 8th 2014

Geo: -45.0311, 168.663It all turned out to be more difficult and painful than I had hoped. Eventually, I found a nice place to drop to one knee and ask the question. After laughing at me in shock for 30 seconds, she eventually said yes. Our cabin at Milford was so picturesque, comfortable and beautiful I opted to keep the window above our bed open for sunrise to greet us. When light shone in around 5am, I opened the stream side curtains to enjoy the view and sound of the stream while I snoozed. It looked overcast, but dry.When I woke again proper around 7.30 it had started to rain. Thick cloud and mist had rolled in, hardly ideal for a helicopter ride. Looks like more trouble for my engagement plans. The initial objective was to propose ... read more
Ring Milford
Milford by Boat
Milford by Boat

Geo: -44.6698, 167.928Here I am in the most picturesque, scenic cabin after the most breathtaking, awe inspiring drive I have ever experienced. The Te Anau - Milford Highway is an experience in its own right. We arrived at Te Anau around 10, after departing Queenstown at 8.15. Its a pretty place by a lake for a stroll, to top up fuel, gather supplies and information before heading North towards Milford. We grabbed a pepper steak pie from here which lived up to its hype. Heading north is a journey into the heart of the Fjordland National Park. Its basically a sole 120km highway all the way to Milford with the exception of a 30km unpaved turnoff, Hollyford Road which finishes at Humboldt Falls. Along the way, dozens of short and long walks, lakes, tracks, pools, waterfalls ... read more
Humboldt Falls
Leaving Queenstown

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Queenstown November 6th 2014

Geo: -45.0311, 168.663We left the dissapointment of Franz Josef behind us to embark on a most spectacular drive south towards Queenstown. It was one of the prettiest drives I can remember, again maximized by picture perfect weather. Blue skies and sunshine. A half hour south of Franz Josef we stopped for a photo at its neighbour the Fox Glacier. From there it wasnt too far on down the west coast to the township of Haast. Not alot here, a few homes, and a few resteraunts/cafes. From here the road beyond leaves the coast and heads into the mountains. Its usually closed daily from 4-6pm on, and often completely in winter. Time, season and weather was on our side and the way was open.The scenery changed from coast, valleys and streams to a narrow windy mountain road, ... read more
Drive through Haast
Fox Glacier
Fox Glacier

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » West Coast » Franz Josef November 5th 2014

Geo: -43.3891, 170.182It all started with a sneeze. Nat down. Suspected broken neck and paralysis. Only 8am. Still time enough for a quick morning stroll before we head down to Franz Joseph for a helicopter ride and glacier hike. Its only a couple hours south and only 10 minutes to the beach. Wrong. The path to the beach is covered in mud. Deep mud. Deep enough to swallow and break my thongs. We saw a baby horse. That was pretty cool. By the time we got back to our hotel for departure and Id checked our route I realized we were behind schedule. It was further than I thought. We needed to average a speed of 260km p/hr to make it to our Glacier Hike on time. Oh and Nats life is flashing before her eyes ... read more
Yeah no kidding..
Baby Horse at Beach Hideaway

Oceania » New Zealand November 4th 2014

Geo: -42.0983, 171.33Today was huge. Were relaxed now, sitting in our beachside log cabin with hot chocolate following a spa and couple of beers. We were on the road from Nelson around 7.45 north west bound for the Abel Tasman national park. I couldn't believe our luck with weather. The forecast; thunderstorms and 20-40mm of rain. The reality, blue skies and relative warmth for NZ standards. The drive from Nelson to Kaiteriteri took around an hour. Here we boarded a 9.30 boat bound for Abel Tasman medlands boat stop. We got a prime view seat on the top deck at the back of the boat. Freezing and windy, with an hour of great views of the coast. We were dropped off at Medlands beach near Bark Bay around 10.30. We had around 5 hours to hike ... read more
Abel Tasman
Abel Tasman Coast
Abel Tasman

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Nelson Region » Nelson November 3rd 2014

Geo: -41.2708, 173.284We enjoyed a sleep in and leisurely start to the day. We woke to find the heavy rain of last night had passed leaving relatively clear blue skies. We checked out of our Blenheim accommodation and drove north to check out the coastal town of Picton, where the ferry departs for Wellington and the North Island. Picton was a pretty place, a small beach town, surrounded by lush forest overlooking a turquoise bay and impressive fjord. After some time here, we were ready to start todays main objective; tasting Marlborough wines.Our first stop at Saint Clair was a bit of a fail, the winery being closed for renovation. Fortunately there was a local foods business on site with cheeses, fudge, mushrooms and honey available for tasting. We walked away with one of the best ... read more
The Spoils of the Day
Wine Country

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