Wanaka was absolutely stunning, even by New Zealand standards with mountains surrounding the small town also with a lakefront the afternoon we arrived I hadn't realised quite how beautiful it was. Wanaka is a less famous, smaller Queenstown according to a lot of people and we only ended up staying one night but it was a niche little town which probably did have a few activities to do but we never really found out.
Our initial arrival to Queenstown reminded me of Wanaka until I found out about all of the adventure sports available to do in Queenstown, including but not limited to: 3 different bungy jumps including the world's 3rd largest the 134 metre Nevis, 2 canyon swings including the largest in the world, parasailing, jet boating, skydiving, luging, kayaking, mountain biking, horse riding and zip lining down the mountain. There are also several cheap/free things to do in Queenstown including Frisbee golf, going on long walks around the mountain scenery, going out for a drink at one of the many interesting bars in town, having a drink down at the beach or getting a world famous fergburger, which were absolutely delicious.
Through time and money constraints I ended up not doing a bungy jump or swing but I did take the gondola up the mountain and doing 'luging' which is basically downhill go karting which was a lot of fun to race people on. Frisbee golf was free and surprisingly really fun except it takes quite a while of playing it to get any good. We also managed to make a day trip to the amazing Milford Sounds, a fiord in the fiordland national park. This world heritage area is the largest national park in New Zealand and has several large amazing fiords.
Queenstown had to be my favourite place I had been travelling and I only managed to scratch the surface really. I now understand how 80/90% of residents there have tourist or working visas. Leaving Queenstown felt like I was leaving New Zealand because we left all of the friends we had made on the Kiwi bus here as they were nearly all staying longer or doing 'the deep south' tour and going to Dunedin.
Next stop was Lake Tekapo by Mount Cook, the tallest point in New Zealand. The lake was beautiful and a renowned star gazing area but we never really saw the full extent of the stars because of cloud cover while we were here. Chris and I decided to take a day trip to mount cook and see the biggest glacier in New Zealand. It was a really nice walk with some great views but again the cloud covered most of Mount Cook and it never really thinned out until we left which was a bit annoying.
Next stop is our last in New Zealand, Christchurch.