Day 32: Taking it easy at Windwhistle

While the mountain decided to show itself yesterday, it all seemed like it was not going to do so today at all. The sky was filled with dark and get clouds right above the village, and more were rolling in at a very constant rate. We also woke up to a very cold day, but could see that the valley had nice weather.

As we had to leave anyway, we did just that and set out on the trip to Windwhistle.
This is very close to Christchurch, and was to be or last full day out and about. Tomorrow is the day we drive to the city, and the day after that we’ll be inside a plane.

The journey proved to be quite uneventful, but we enjoyed it very much, as the driving was leisurely and scenic. Not very much to report here!
It did however warm up to about 20 degrees, and we were tempted to pull out the shorts. It has been a long while since we had those on!

Tomorrow, we have made reservations for some action packed adventure and will drive to the city also. You’ll see tomorrow!
The B&B for tonight is located on a pretty posh Golf resort, and we had to drive 20 minutes to the nearest town to get some food as the prices for the accompanying four course dinner are a little to steep for us.
Remember: we are dining out every day for 5 weeks in a row! 😉

Day 31: Mountains!

The Otago Peninsula has been good to us. All marine wildlife has shown itself to us, and sometimes even posed for the camera in way we didn’t think possible. The weather has been awful and great at times, and during the entire time we had fun, enjoyed the amazing scenery and loved being there.
It truly is a good place to be.

But, all good things must come to an end, and for us this meant we had to backtrack quite a bit, towards Twizel. After that, we turn left instead of going straight: to Mount Cook!
The Mount Cook / Aoraki Village basically consists of one thing: The Hermitage.
This is a large hotel, and they seem to be the sole owners of all the accommodation over there. The hostel, the restaurant, the motel and the suites, all run by the central hotel.
This also means it is not cheap in any way, as there is nothing to choose.

The Mount was quite reluctant to show itself today. With nearly 3800 metres it is the tallest mountain in NZ, and was summited by Sir Edmund Hillary somewhere in the late 1940’s. It also is cradled by the longest Glacier in NZ, The Tasman Glacier.

The mountain is tall enough to generate its own climate and clouds and has done so the full day, right until around 9:30pm, after which we had a brief glimpse at the peak.

The way to Mount Cook Village is through some very scenic landscape, alongside the glacial lake which flows of Tasman Glacier. This valley is about 55km long, and never ceased to amaze us with its beauty. Just, wow.

Our day was long, as we visited the Moeraki Boulders during the drive to Mount Cook. These are peculiar formations of rock, formed by what seems to be very specific settlement of rock. The end result are near perfect round shaped balls of rock, just lying on a very small piece of beach. Weird!

We convulsed the day by doing a small walk to the true Tasman Glacier Lake, and the now not so blue Blue Lakes. The first is very white, the latter are now greenish.