Christchurch - Road Trip
Top Deck South Island 5 day tour booked with Travel Democracy.
Firstly, I am not a backpack traveller... yet. I enjoy the luxury side of travelling so this whole experience will be a test to see if the travelling nanny can really travel properly.
I have my backpack stuffed with various jumpers and track pants ready to combat this cold weather. We are going with a low budget on this trip so stay tuned to see how that goes...
I have allocated just under $100 each day for everything but accommodation, 10 meals and some transport. We have 3 hostels to pay for, car hire, a sim card (Obviously) as well as the rest of our food.
Arriving at 1am yesterday morning we stayed in the Jucy hostel located just 2 minute drive from Christchurch airport. For $35 a night it was the best money i've spend in a long time. We stayed in 'pods' which housed a bed, a power plug and the coolest atmosphere EVER.I'm practically begging Kassia to go back and stay there on our last night.
Taking the public bus into the city centre, Christchurch itself doesn't know what it feels like to be busy. The buses are easy to navigate and run on time. They are safe and luggage friendly.
Getting off the bus at the interchange we walked 15 minutes to our hostel. We maybe saw 15 people and trust me I was looking around... It's such a juxtaposition in comparison to Sydney.
It left like everyone has picked up and gone. Not reading too many blog posts and articles about Christchurch prior to coming that was probably the thing we didn't expect. The city itself is inviting but doesn't host much to do. It has fashion shops, small restaurants and grocery stores.
Getting around Christchurch is fairly easy. I'd recommend getting a car if you can but it's not the biggest hassle if you don't. Being a very small city the essentials are in walking distance from each other in the city centre. We are located a 10-15 minute walk from the city centre so next time to save us a bit of a hike with our bags i'd recommend staying in the heart of the city centre.
Food wise it's important when travelling to keep your iron, magnesium and hydration levels high. You can get easily tired from exploring all day and having a bad diet will not help your energy levels and allow your muscles to fully recover. I am fairly lucky I stick to a mostly health diet, and mostly vegetarian.
I've also got my fitbit which keeps track of my heart rate, steps as well as how much calories i've burned for the day so I know how much food I need to refuel my body on a long day. It's important when travelling not to over do it.
Living so close to New Zealand I'm not too obsessed about getting everything I want to see done. As long as we have fun, take some great memories and enjoy ourselves I can always come back.
We leave tomorrow to make our 7 day trip around the south island. It will be days filled with activities and I need to go to sleep to make sure i'm ready for tomorrows wake up call... 6am (help).
See you back tomorrow!
What a day, we nearly missed our bus because one of our alarms this morning didn't go off. The day was off to a good start. We arrived at breakfree hostel where the bus was picking us up from at 7am. Departing shortly after, Kassia and I marked our names off and hopped onto the bus for the 45 minute drive to springfield. Home to a massive donut replica from The Simpsons it was a cute little stop in another quiet town before taking the long journey to eventually end up in fox glacier.
We stopped for morning tea at a rest station. During our drive throughout the day we sat mesmerised by the scenery New Zealand has to offer. I have never seen snow and to be able to see frost on the roads and snow on the mountain peeks is such a rare treat. We then continued onto Arthurs Pass National Park for a quick photo (check my instagram) and then continued onto Hokitika for lunch. Couldn't go past some fish and chips and a walk along the coast line. After lunch we continued our journey further down to Fox Glacier.
Fox Glacier is home to MT Cook as well as other mountain tops that are breath taking to watch. We had a small hike to the jetty viewpoint on Lake Matherson. The weather held off long enough for us to see the sunset over the water with almost crystal clear reflective views. After seeing a couple more view points we arrived at our hostel. It's a cute little place to stay located in the small town centre. I think we pretty much take up the whole hostel... After dinner we had a walk down to see glow worms in the national park. A great experience for me as i've never seen them before!
After enjoying some mulled wine we find ourselves in bed, warm enough ready to get some sleep for day two.
Tomorrow we venture onto the Glacier with a hike to the bottom of the glacier eye. We are really tired and going to need to sleep for tomorrows adventures!
We had an early rise this morning to some soggy weetbix and milk. We headed off from our hostel in Fox glacier at 8am to take the hike to the bottom of the Fox Glacier. It was a freezing start but once we started the 1 hour return hike we warmed up quite quickly. The hike itself was so picturesque. Surrounded by mountains and the river it was a great experience. We are currently in a cafe getting some lunch before driving 5 hours down to queenstown. We are so excited to get a FERG burger for dinner and do some exploring. In Queenstown we had the choice of doing adrenaline sports, apart from costing a weeks wage I am going to hit the slopes and learn how to snow board. I've heard its fairly difficult so i'm going to make sure my insurance is up to date and that i'll be covered in case this traveller takes to the trees instead.
Good evening Queenstown! We arrived just after 6:30pm local time, as its winter it's dark already so we can't do too much exploring with a camera tonight. We are going to head out to the famous Ferg Burger in town for some dinner and then get a few drinks around town. We were driving for 6 hours today so being on land is great. Experiencing a bit of car sickness and a few grazes from a little fall earlier (the camera survived, so that's all that matters) we are all set up in our cozy room. Queenstown hosts some say over 200 activities so tomorrow we are going to put that to the test. After a long day of sight seeing its going to be a good night sleep before a big day tomorrow. You can check out kassia's pre and post skydiving experience on my instagram story as well as what we get up to exploring.