Since my baby brother was turning 21, and since Rohan had never been to NZ, I thought it appropriate to organise a trip through the stunning South Island.
We drove counter-clockwise, starting in Christchurch, with our main stops being Greymouth, Franz Josef and Fox Glaciers, Wanaka, Queenstown, the Catlins, Dunedin, and Mt Cook, and finishing up back in Christchurch.
We visited old friends, made new friends, discovered new things about ourselves and about each other, and took enough photos to fill a gallery!
Meet Freddy - our Mighway (replacement) campervan! (the first one had transmission issues, and we were held back a day...)
Castle Hill, Canterbury
Sunset at Punakaiki
Freddy, our replacement campervan, had some technical issues on day two of our trip right before we left Greymouth. While it was being repaired, we decided to have a walk around the town where my father spent his.
Rohan decided he needed a new hat, so we went into Alf Harrison's. The gentleman was so lovely and chatty, so I had a gut feeling I should ask him if he knew my grandfather (whom I never got to meet) - turns out he owned the chemist next door and they knew each other quite well! So well, in fact, that he still remembered where the house my father grew up in was.
Life has a funny way of handing you sneaky little gifts...
Within 5 minutes of walking into the head office of Glacier Helicopters, we were being rushed to the next available helicopter and flown over Franz Josef Glacier, landed and set free on the top of the mountain, and flown back down over Fox Glacier!
Moody morning view from our Fox Glacier Top 10 Holiday Park camp site
Driving from Fox Glacier to Haast and need a real coffee? Help out this little guy (plus it was super tasty)
Gates of Haast
Driving long distances through NZ isn't so bad when the pit stops are what dreams are made of - Boundary Creek Picnic area on the shores of Lake Wanaka
The water was so warm and so shallow for so far, I didn't have my swimmers but I just couldn't resist - Lake Wanaka
Ahh Roy's Peak Track - we left at 4.30am in the pitch black, took waay too much gear, it took 3.5 hours for these two unfit fools to reach the first peak, but BOY WERE WE REWARDED!?! The most AMAZING sunrise, the most amazing view, and the most amazing hiking buddy this broken lady could have asked for xx
Showing Rohan around my favourite place in the world - Arrowtown
Looking back at Queenstown from Glenorchy-Queenstown Road
We found a place called Devils Staircase, but it was actually rather heavenly
Anyone recognise this field on the way in/out of Milford Sound? (hint - Lord of the Rings)
Overlooking Tautuku Bay from Florence Hill Lookout in the Catlins
Cathedral Caves, the Catlins - only available at low tide, but totally worth the wait
Petrified Forest at Curio Bay had dinosaur loving Rohan losing his sh*t
McLean's Falls, the Catlins
Nugget Point Lighthouse
Looking back at Dunedin on our way to Larnach Castle
Exploring the gardens of Larnach Castle
Tunnel Beach is truly a sight to see - in the 1870s, Mr Edward Cargill commissioned a tunnel of stairs be cut out of solid rock so his family had their own private beach!
Moeraki Boulders - no one quite knows how they really got there...
Mt Cook, as seen from the shores of the Hooker Glacier melt lake (yes, those are icebergs - and one rock)
Whether you're facing Mt Cook or the opposite direction, the view is stunning
Sunrise over Lake Pukaki (from the side door of our campervan - honestly, freedom camping is the sh*t)
Something different for the Church of the Good Shephard on the shores of Lake Tekapo
The last time I was in Christchurch was a few months before the initial early morning earthquake. Seeing most buildings either knocked down or condemned just had me on the verge of tears the whole time... But the city is recovering, and still worth a visit!
And here's where we finish - until our next big adventure x