Despite the sometimes difficult conditions, Mount Cook National Park is an exceptionally beautiful place to visit. You don’t have to be a mountaineer to interact with the stunning scenery; there are various alpine walks beginning near the village and approximately three hours return.
With my group here at Lake Tekapo, it’s about three hours drive south-west of Christchurch in the Mackenzie Basin. Facing north across the incredible turquoise-coloured lake to the mountainous Southern Alps. The Lake reaps its intense milky-opal colour from the fine rock-flour (ground by glaciers) which is suspended in the water.
The Kea bird would have to be one of the naughtiest and most mischievous birds on the planet. It’s the only truly alpine parrot in the world and gained early notoriety among settler farmers for attacks on their sheep – and has a total disregard for car tyres! Innately curious, Kea are attracted to people wherever they enter its mountainous domain and are especially friendly.
New Zealand’s original great train ride. Developed for walkers, cyclists and horse riders, the Otago Central Rail Trail follows the former Otago Central branch railway line and part of Nga Haerenga. The Taieri Gorge Railway offers unique and panoramic views over an ever-changing scenery. There is a licenced Café and bar on board and live commentary on all trips.
The home of Bungy at the Kawarau Bridge Bungy Centre, 43 metres of pure adrenaline to help your heart start to pump and adventure is what the Kiwis are renowned for! After my flight, a trip out to AJ Hackett’s Bungy Jumping bridge wasn’t enough to convince me to end the day here – in a gulley. Love to watch the others though …