A Beautiful Exploration

south-island-lakes

A long time before I decided to make a move to New Zealand, I always thought of travelling throughout the South Island. Fortunately, I got an opportunity to work on a triathlon event in Wanaka, a small town 3.5 hours drive away from Dunedin.

south-island-lakes

I decided to go to other cities first to explore the Southern Lakes area more. I went to Queenstown, a popular tourist destination. Some people said that you haven’t been to NZ when you haven’t been to Queenstown, so I gave it a go. I am not a fan of tourist spots as accommodation and activities tend to be pricey. When I arrived in Queenstown I was appalled by how crowded it was. I felt the crowd was almost similar to Kuta, a tourist area in Bali. I went on the cable car to go up the hill and the view was incredibly stunning.

the-view-at-queenstown

Then I did the Luge, it was beautiful and I felt like I was on top of the world.

the-luge-at-queenstown

The next day, I went on another journey to Glenorchy, a smaller town near Queenstown.

glenorchy

I booked a horse-riding trip to the Lord of the Rings shoot locations. I was so excited because I had been saving my money for this. Once all of the tour participants were ready to go, we went to an area called Paradise. Yes, the name is Paradise and I could see why it is known by such a name. “I’m in paradise…” I rated that as one of the best experiences in my life.

horseriding-in-paradise

 

the-dart-river

 

I went to Wanaka through another road called the Crown Range. It is a road less travelled, not for the faint of heart. However, in the winter, this road leads to well-known ski fields. I decided to go through this road to take advantage of the hills, so I could overlook the entire city from above. And the hard work was paid off because the view was breathtakingly beautiful.

the-crown-range

 

the-crown-range-in-new-zealand

Wanaka is the “little sister” of Queenstown, known for its attractive tourist activities, but without the crowd. I loved this city much more than Queenstown for one big reason: everything was not as expensive as in Queenstown.

the-road-to-wanaka

I arrived in Wanaka 1 day before the workday so I just went for a quick walk to the town, and opted for a swim in the lake. The water was refreshing, washing my tiredness away. And then I went to some nice bars around town, buying a glass of local beer on happy hours. I felt like I wanted to live there forever.

swimming-in-the-lake-at-wanaka

There is not much to say about the workday. Time to go back to reality.  And then after being back home, I needed to face an even harsher reality: trying to find a job. I was like a girl waking up from a very beautiful dream to a horrible morning. Oh well, life goes on…