There’s too much to tell and not enough time to tell it. My 3 week break was filled with so many amazing experiences on my travels, but I’m going to move on from the North Island to my travels on the South Island with my parents. I flew back to Christchurch on Thursday morning super early and met my dad at the airport there. Our planes got in right around the same time. We spent the first day relaxing, eating pizza, and then he fell asleep and didn’t wake up again until the next day, so I just did some homework that night. We set off for our travels Friday morning. Unfortunately, a hurricane hit the West Coast of New Zealand, were we were supposed to be heading and we couldn’t go there because the roads were closed and the phone lines were down. Instead, we started driving south and called about a dozen hotels on the way to see if there was any availability. Everyone was booked. We finally tried a bed and breakfast in a tiny town called Twizel and they had one room left! It ended up being perfect and was possibly the nicest place I’ve ever stayed… It’s not super fancy, but the people were really friendly, the view was amazing, and breakfast was delicious!
We spent 2 days traveling around the area. We drove to Lake Tekapo, Lake Pukaki, checked out Mt. Cook, but you couldn’t see it with the weather. We kind of just winged it since we didn’t have any plans since we never made it to the West Coast. I have a guidebook called “Wild Walks” which tells you random short walks you can do in each place you visit. The book told us about the Clay Cliffs, which are these crazy eroded cliffs that are absolutely amazing. It’s about 45 minutes from Twizel and a must see if anyone comes down here. It’s a pretty obscure place and you would never know they were there if you weren’t told to go there. You can drive up pretty far and then walk along the dirt road for a ways to see them. It looks as if it will all look the same along the walk, but it’s so worth it to go all the way to the end of the trail. You can walk into this natural round amphitheater like thing where you’re surrounded by the eroded structures. It’s absolutely amazing, just be careful where you wander because it’s some pretty serious erosion and not everything is super stable.
After that, we headed down to Queenstown which I’ll put in my next post!
The view from our hotel room
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<p><span style="color: rgb(29, 29, 29); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal; background-color: rgb(237, 237, 237);">My name is Katie Steike and I'm a junior at the University of Rochester, studying molecular genetics and music. I love reading, playing soccer, and going on hikes and adventures! I'm going to be studying in Christchurch New Zealand for spring 2014 and I'm excited to become immersed in the Kiwi culture and explore the beautiful country!</span></p>