Travel - New Zealand

  • Mount Cook

    I made my way towards Mount Cook. First I said I’d stop off in Wanaka as I was told it was a lovely town. I only stopped off briefly but as usual it is a beautiful little spot, very similar to Queenstown. I could see it being nice to rent a bike out around there. There’s also puzzle world here which I’ve heard great things about.

    Anyway it took me about 4-5 hours in total to get to Mount Cook I believe and it’s a pretty spectacular drive, especially once you get to the lake. There are plenty of lookout points to stop at and they are well worth stopping at.

    I stayed in the YHA hostel (I’m really liking this chain here) and it was really good. It’s funny as the village we’re in is so small that they are also the shop. It also had a dry sauna which was decent too. Internet was very solid (got a few rounds of Overwatch in) and the rooms/beds are great.

    There seems to be a lot of aerial rides you can get here to Mount Cook or the Glacier nearby however I spent my day trekking. I went to Hooker Valley which was roughly a 3 hour return trek and to the Tasman lake which was about an hour return trek in total although there is another path which takes 3-4 hours cycling I believe.

    Anyway both were really nice walks.Hooker Valley in particular is very cool as it ends at Hooker lake where it’s half covered in glaciers, so pretty awesome.

    If you do go out here, and I recommend you do, it might be best to bring some supplies with you so you can cook and make snacks on the go instead of depending on the limited stock in the area.

  • North Island

    I’m going to put this all in one post because I actually didn’t get to do that much even though there is plenty to do here.

    Unfortunately my injury didn’t help, it was really bothering me most of the time (went doctor again to make sure it was all good, was prescribed some other things)

    Firstly I spent all my nights at YHA hostels and generally I recommend all of these. The one in Hamilton wasn’t great in comparison to the others but it was still okay to sleep in. Generally they had excellent wifi, spacious dorms, excellent kitchens. So definitely recommended on the whole.

    Wellington is the first place in NZ that I’d actually call a city. It has a really cool waterfront, some cool graffiti area’s and a load of museums. I didn’t stay very long as I wanted to get to the tongariro area so I could do a trek (where Mordor was shot)

    So this is where I spent most of my time, unfortunately the weather was bad for most of the time I was there so I took it as an opportunity to rest up. But things didn’t get any better and as I said my injury was kind of getting worse so I left it in the end. Have to say I was a little disappointed as I really wanted to check it out. More reason to come back.

    So off I went to taupo to see a doctor primarily. He basically told me I’ll be like this for another 2 weeks, so probably won’t be up to too much during that time. Taupo seems like a nice scenic town. I went to a thermal spa in the area and it was fantastic. They had about 3-4 pools, the furthest one away being the warmest. This was exactly what I needed and I just relaxed in there for about an hour.

    Then I decided to make my way towards Auckland (flight out of NZ) and since I couldn’t check out Mordor, Hobbiton was on the way so I went there instead. I’d heard mostly decent to average feedback which is why I was going to skip it. You do have to go as part of tour which is something I’m not a big fan of. That said I did enjoy it for what it is. If you love lotr/the hobbit, you’ll definitely have a good time checking out the area, hearing some things from the guide. So I would recommend it.

    And that pretty much covers the trip, from there I just spent a night in Hamilton and then drove off pretty early to the airport the following day. Fire away if anyone has any questions.

  • Glad you enjoyed it, if I read this thread I would have said met up!

  • Ya I'm happy to meet up with allies where ever I go. I've made my way to Buenos Aires now.

    Where are you based in New Zealand?

  • @tokeeffe9

    Based in a town within Auckland called Papakura. You would have passed it coming back from Hamilton to Auckland Airport.

  • @jords Cool, ya you're right. I did pass through there.

  • All my pictures (well the decent ones) are online now -

  • Milford Sound is absolutely breathtaking

  • Just saw this thread now. I'm from Wellington. Sorry to hear that the weather wasn't great for you here, but that's just how things are around here, very wet and windy - especially in the winter. Regardless, skimming your post, sounds like you had a lot of fun adventures.

  • Oh for sure. I loved New Zealand. I'd be very tempted to come back again just so I could do the Tongariro alpine Trek at least :)