We went to New Zealand last Easter. It was both our first times – personally, it was one of those places that was just a bit too near for me to prioritise if I had time for a longer trip, but far away for me not to easily get to if I only had a few days (does that make sense?)
I knew I was going to be in for a great time as the flight was landing. The pilot told everyone to look out the window. “This is one of the most beautiful views you can ever get from a plane,” he said, as everyone craned their necks to get a view of snow-capped mountains.
I loved how New Zealand made me feel so small. It was just so majestic and grand and (relatively) untouched. We stopped at most of the lookouts. Unfortunately, none of the photos did the views justice.
We had a little less than two weeks and we decided to spend that entire time driving around the southern part of the South Island. We went to Wanaka, Aoraki/Mt Cook, Moeraki, Dunedin, Te Anau and Queenstown which amounted to over 1,000 kms. Despite being on the same island (granted, it was a large island) it was crazy how different each place looked.
It was really inspiring to see how outdoorsy the locals were. We went on walks that were at most half a day long, but in each place, we’d encounter people going on multi-day hikes. And they didn’t seem particularly hardcore either – we ran into families with kids. Not saying what they were doing wasn’t impressive, but it made the trips seem accessible to us.
We ended the trip feeling that New Zealand was one of those places we’d definitely want to go back to. Now that we had a taster, we resolved to stay at certain places longer and savour them a bit more.
It’s nearly the end of 2019. Here’s hoping to more outdoorsy adventures in 2020!