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Published: August 8th 2007
Well the next morning we finally left queens town and I couldn't have been sadder to go and to say good bye to the bulk of guys that had made it so much fun as they were all heading in different directions.
After catching the bus and waving goodbye to Queenstown we headed off to Dunedin; the beer and chocolate capital of New Zealand. On our route we followed the former gold trial through central Otago to get there. We eventually arrived at our hostel, in the rain. It was quite an old building and felt a little bit creepy with random lights flicking on and off. Unfortunately having totally burned out, energy level and money wise in Queenstown we didn't even a fraction of the things this Scottish modelled town has to offer. After a 15 minute walk into town we decided the art gallery was far too much hassle and stayed in a coffee shop and did internet for the afternoon. Here I also decided to buy a New Zealand sim card as I had accessed roaming on my Oz mob and it had been leaching money from me. * note to everyone who goes to New
Zealand- if you want a mob with you just get a NZ sim as it costs 30 dollars which is pretty darn good and texts are cents. N.b Vodafone seems to have a monopoly here which is ok as it's free to talk to all your mates that have also purchased Vodafone NZ sims
We spent a very quiet evening in one of the many great places to eat in Dunedin and were up early for the bus to Lake Tekapo.
As we left Dunedin we stopped at the worlds steepest street called Baldwin Street which some people decided to climb in the short break we had here- but climbing the steepest Street in the world in, in the rain, in 5 mins didn't appeal to me so I just photographed the people collapsing on the floor at the top with my zoom lens
Our next stop was Moeraki boulders which looked much like the rounded boulders they have on Boulders beach in Cape Town and then we drove through Mackenzie country passing Benmore Dam, largest earth dam in Southern Hemisphere. Our last stop was for a picture opportunity with the amazing views of
Mount Cook lake- which also looked like it had a blue colour filter on it just amazing- before heading into Lake Tekapo. Lake Tekapo is pronounced: take- a- poo which has made me laugh many times over so far.
Before actually dropping us all off at our Hostel we visited the very famous church on the lake and the statue of the collie dog that is dedicated to the working collie dogs of the Mackenzie- the only other dog statue I'd seen since Edinburgh's Bobby of Grey Friars.
Our Hostel was stunningly situated on the shores of lake Tekapo which was just beautiful and was miles from anywhere- with pretty much the hostel, the lake and a cluster of shops and eating places to go. Practically as soon as we'd got here we headed off again on a horse ride around the lake. Now I didn't tell the people at the stables that I'd ridden before as in past experience they give you a temperamental horse that try's to throw you off for the entire trek- thankfully I was given a lovely horse with a very silly name-Socks, who did me proud. It was great to
get back in the saddle and ride but the most fabulous things were the views from around the lake, maybe it helped we had a beautiful sunny eve but it was totally picturesque. That evening we headed to Pepe's pizza place that had the most fabulous pizza in the world. * note to reader: I cannot underestimate the pizza here; it is up in the hall of fame with Cape Town's steak and wine and Queenstown's Ferg Burgers. You must have a Pizza from Pepe's if you come to Lake Tekapo.
Next morning got back on the bus and headed back to Christchurch. On the way we skirted Edges of Mackenzie country, Burke pass and the foothills of Southern Alps. Being asleep for most of the journey as most magic bus people are I missed the picturesque towns of Fairlie and Geraldine before and the Canterbury plains, the largest area of flat land in New Zealand.
Arriving in Christchurch we decided to stay at a different hostel, one that was more central but I highly dissuade anyone in Christchurch from booking in at the shit hole that is the New Excelsior. Fair enough it is central
but its minging. The nice surprise however on returning to Christchurch was that it seemed like a different town, We'd come in on the famous Buskers Weekend and it was absolutely buzzing; full of street performers, market stalls, and people plus it was a beautifully bright sunny day. We did intended to get to the major art gallery that we'd missed it the first time round but the spirit of the day meant we sacked it off and soaked up the atmosphere instead. We then decided it might be a good idea to go punting. The punting didn't last very long but it was a different experience from Cambridge as the water is shallow so the guy punting has to work much harder against the current of the river- and I saw an eel in the river which I was very excited about.
After this we headed to the main even, the buskers comedy festival and took our seats on the grass. Just as Liz popped out for food one of the mean comedians came on making fun of all the late comers and I was praying Liz didn't pop up at that point, which she thankfully didn't.
The show was very funny but after two bottles of wine every thing was funny and after we headed to a club where it all got funnier, including the bit where on our walk home, after buying a hot dog- I was concentrating on eating it so hard I fell down a hole and my sausage went flying!! Finally after being detracted from our path by some locals who insisted we go to a club with them we eventually fell into bed at a crazy hour, having to catch the bus out to Kaikoura at 7am.
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