Monday, December 30, 2013

Our New Zealand Vacation: Overview

Mr. Smith and I decided a few months ago that we wanted to take a driving tour of New Zealand's South Island for our Christmas holiday this year.  I pretty much planned the whole thing.  You know how that goes, right, ladies?  The men never want to be involved in the planning, but have a lot of opinions once you get there.  Anyhoo, at this point we are back home alive.

I'm going to break up this blog into daily pieces so that it doesn't get boring (one can hope...)

First, here's what our vacation looked like:

Saturday, 21 December 2013 - Flew from Sydney to Wellington via Qantas
Sunday, 22 December 2013 - Ferry from Wellington to Picton; drive to Kaikoura
Monday, 23 December 2013 - Drive to Hamner Springs; drive to Christchurch
Tuesday, 24 December 2013 - Drive to Lake Tekapo
Wednesday, 25 December 2013 - Drive to Queenstown
Thursday, 26 December 2013 - Drive to Milford Sound, then back to Queenstown
Friday, 27 December 2013 - Drive to Greymouth
Saturday, 28 December 2013 - Drive to Nelson
Sunday, 29 December 2013 - Drive to Picton; ferry from Picton to Wellington
Monday, 30 December 2013 - Flew from Wellington to Sydney via Qantas

We drove approximately 3,000 kilometres over 8 days!

My observations in PRO/CON list regarding New Zealand:

Wonderfully Scenic - Beautiful lakes/mountains/beaches/waterfalls
Twisting, winding roads
Generous, helpful, fun-loving natives
Underpopulated = no crowds (or at least, not what I would consider a crowd)
Pascall's Pineapple Lumps
Loads of sheep and cows
Mostly empty roads
Lots of options so that you can make your holiday what you want it to be

Sand flies on West Coast
Twisting, winding roads
One-Lane Bridges (only because they can be scary on narrow, blind corners)
Unless you want fast food, all meals are expensive
Fuel is expensive
Cars have to share narrow, winding roads with cyclists

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