I’ve been in Cairns for almost a week now, and apart from a wild rainforest adventure, things have been pretty slow. I’ve been catching up on work, relaxing and going out with new friends from the hostel, and taking full advantage of $3 beers from reception. With the lack of blog content the past week, I thought it was a good time to share some of the remaining material from New Zealand. Stay tuned for more Australian adventures coming up soon, though!
One of the best things about New Zealand is its pristine, unrivaled nature. The scenery is stunning: whether it’s rolling green hills dotted by fluffy sheep, dramatic mountain peaks thrusting into the sky, wide sweeping valleys, or fathomless gorges blanketed by rushing river rapids, there is never a dull scene in this country.
With the country’s lack of connected rail (most trains are scenic tour trains, and quite expensive), and my fear of driving on the left side of the road, I mostly made my way from town to town via InterCity bus with a flexipass. Most legs were 4-5 hours long – but despite a sore bum and bus drivers who seem to love to hear themselves talk, there’s really nothing to complain about when you have a front row view to the New Zealand you, otherwise, never would have seen. I took a few trips through the north island, but the south island’s beauty rivaled it by and large.
From the city of Christchurch to the high valley and glacial region of Mount Cook, down through rolling countryside and vineyards to Queenstown, past forests and lakes to Milford Sound, to the volcanic landscape of Tongariro, I had a good 20+ hours of drool-worthy, awe-inspiring, gasp-inducing scenery.
Take a look:
Note: all of these photos were taken with my iPhone, mostly from inside the bus. Some were taken at photo breaks along the way, and one toward the end was taken from the plane between the south and north islands (those are the Southern Alps.)