Queenstown, I just love it!!
Arrived safely on 29th December after a long 9 hour bus trip for Christchurch. I had pre booked a hostel due to the new years rush, called 'The Last Resort' - not a great name I must admit, but was alovely wee hostel. Right in the centre of town but still very quiet, just 14 beds, 4 beds per room, they have a dog called Coco and free brekafast, computers, wifi and towels. Perfect!! A great place to stay and nice and cheap too.
As I arrived quite late on Thursday 29th I just cooked some tea at the hostel and caught up on some emails etc...ready to explore the next day!
Friday 30th Dec I had a great day here in Queenstown. Enjoyed my free brekafast at the hostel; sooo nice to have toast and jam again!! Then a spent a few hours walking around the beautiful and amazing lake here; Lake Wakatipu. Queenstown is known as the adrenaline junkie town of Nw Zealand and also as a big drinking city so I was expecting somewhere quite big anf very noisey etc. But in fact, much to my surprise it is a ctually a very small and compact wee place. centered around a few main streets. It is a really beautiful place and the lake here is just spectacular. On Friday late afternoon I went to meet a bunch of Northern Irish fl=olk - would you believe it from my road back home and a road about 1.5 miles from me! Mad!! 2 fellas Vraig and Neil live over here in New Zealand and are also in Queenstown for New Years and Craig's parents were over visitng from home. So I took a bottle of wine over to the apartment whey were staying in, which had the most georgeous view over the lake and mountains! It was great to be sat in a room full of local northern irish people, having some wine and able to be looking out over the amazing lake and mountains! I hadnt actually seen Craig or Neal since I was about 11 years old and we used to go around in a wee group on our bikes, cycling round the drumreagh and ballykiegle roads haha!! So was great to catch up and have a good chat. We al went out for dinner the, to a famous pasta and pizza place called 'Winnies' in Q'Town and I had a really lush 'Thai chicken' pizza...was stunning! After a lovely meal we went to 'Pub On Wharf' bar which is a lovely bar on the wharf (you probably guessed that!) and there was a great live band playing there. I really enjoyed my day today and catching up with local people from back home!
Sat 31st Dec - New Years Eve...another VERY good day! I got up and headed out in the morning on the bus to nearby 'Arrowtown' which is a very quaint little town which started up in the 1860's when they found gold in the Arrow River. The town still has over 60 of the original wooden and stone buildings from the time. There is a chinese setllement which I walked around for a ood while. showing you the lives of the chinese diggers who moved to New Zealand to try and find their fortune. You can also go panning for gold here in Arrowtown, instead I went to a wee cafe and had a nice mocha and used their free wifi to send a few emails home. Today I was really content and happy...to be sat in New Zealand on new years eve, on my own, having made it round south east asia, through sydney and down from north to south new zealand...i was quite pleased with myself! This year has definitely had its ups and downs as you all know and to be finshing the year off here in New Zealand, in one of the most beautiful places and knowing that my first 3 months of 2012 I will still be travelling and having fantastic adventures if just great. Nothing I ever though I would be able to do. Plus the added little thing of Andrew & I & us sorting everything & meeting in Fiji on 10th Jan definitely helps how Im feeling about entering 2012...it will be a good year!!
I spent new years eve afternoon drinking too much at Pub On Wharf again! I met up with David, the trish guy I did the sky dive with in Taupo and a few friends of his he had met along the way joined us too. So we enjoyed several glasses of wine in the sun by the wharf...lush! New Years Eve night the same bunch of us went to 'The Boiler Room' which is a bar along the water too, we saw in the new year wiith fantastic fireworks over the water overloking the lake and mountians....just perfect! After I had seen in new years with them I went to meet the norhtern irish crew who were very merry and in a pub clled 'the pig and whisle'. Was great to spend new years with so many people! Bring on 2012!!
New Years Day, naturally I had needed lie in and met Dvaid the Iirhs guy for a cuppa before he headed onto his next destination. The rest of the day I spent by the lake, taking in the views, wandering around the shop etc. I move onto Te Anau tomorrow, up at 6am for 7am bus so had an earlyish night tonight.
I have thoroughly loved my time in Queenstown and it was definitely an amazing place to spend NYE. I will be sad to leave tomorrow.