Still loving life in Queenstown. Met some more people at the hostel and am still in the full swing of the backpacker lifestyle. In and around the town there is still loads to do. Sean and me walked the hostel dog for some free internet time; crazy dog went nuts at the sight of cyclists. We did Jet boating right through a canyon which was great fun, especially getting so close to the canyon wall and the 360 spins. On probably the worst day I have had weather wise we did the indoor crazy golf.. the best crazy golf I have ever been to; Airports, Castles and Cities! Awesome detail plus you even got a free lolly at the end haha! And then there is Ferg Burger! Everyone I spoke to who has been to Queenstown has said it is the place to eat. A pretty big claim but they didn't disappoint. Huge burgers with everything, I spent a small fortune eating there during the day and on nights out!
Queenstown really is a wicked place to be. In the sun you have walks, hikes, mountain bikes plus a number of adventure sports to get your heart racing and then in the winter season you have the ski slopes! It's awesome all year round!
I was due to leave Queenstown in the next couple of days with Sean heading south on the bottom bus but before we left a few of us did the Canyon Swing! A 70metre drop followed by a swing right across the canyon. The great thing about this though is that there was about 70 different ways you could do it!..They had the chair; you sit down and then tip yourself backwards.. Bin Laden; jump/fall off with a bin on your head..Pin Drop; meant to be really scary feeling the full force of the swing..and loads more, each getting more and more mental!
The first jump we did was a tandem backward. Gavin and me paired up and the guys just let us push ourselves off. It was cool, the first bit took my breath away and it was weird seeing the platform rush away from me so quickly but it was nothing on the rush I got from the Bungy jump.
The next one we did was our solo jumps. Everyone I was with did the straight pin drop (feet first) but I wanted to do something alittle different. Asking the advice of the people who were working I did the handstand! After some funny photos I went into a press up position and they lifted my legs over my head. I was facing the canyon floor before I pushed off. 70 metre fall face down towards the canyon. Pretty cool but again I wasn't too bothered after Nevis! I think if you want to work your way up on intense adventure activities do Nevis last haha. Also I think the guys who work there play on the people who are nervous..the more nervous you are the more they mess with you..Ollie in the chair found out the hard way haha! Awesome video.
The next day Sean and me left Queenstown on the bottom bus. We said goodbye to a few people but the majority would still be there when we got back after Milford Sound.
First stop was Dunedin, an Australian city which was built to look like Edinburgh. It was a student city but we were only there for one night so we didn't get to see much of its nightlife. We stopped off at a few places in the city checking out the stadium, a view of the coast and port, a famous brewery and then Baldwin street. Baldwin St is in the Guinness world record books being the steepest road in the world! Didn't seem that steep and I swear I saw steeper in Asia but I guess it might be the steepest residential road in the world.
Our next stop was Invercargil. Here was just a stepping stone on our way to Stuart Island; one of the most southern places in New Zealand. The city wasn't that great but along the way we stopped off at Cannibal Bay. This beach got its name a while ago when they found a mass grave of Maori warriors that seemed to have been eaten...nice! But the history wasn't the reason why we stopped there; walking a little way down the beach we saw around 20 Sea lions! They were huge! All just lying in the sand and when you got too close they'd sit up and growl aggressively. We had some fun taking photos and seeing who was the bravest getting close haha. The driver told us that the sea lions were actually quite rare in the area because of hunting. When attacked they wouldn't run and when they did it wasn't very fast. Looks like I was lucky to see so many in the same place!
The next stop was McLean falls. A nice walk through a rainforest we climbed a trail leading to a waterfall. It was completely covered and in the shade so the water was freezing! First time I didn't go swimming haha but I did go under the waterfall for a few brief seconds.
After that we stopped for lunch at a beach. Here there was supposed to be dolphins but to our disappointment the sea was too rough and we didn't see anything. To kill some time Sean and me walked up the beach towards a place where the sea hit rock and was thrown high up in the air. I climbed down towards the ocean for a better view and there at my feet was another massive sea lion! I jumped a foot when I heard it hiss at me! I was completely oblivious to it at my feet until it made the sound...I was too busy trying to get a perfect picture of the crashing waves above my head! Sean obviously thought my reaction hilarious and was bent double laughing at me. I on the other hand nearly had a heart attack thinking that a rock had attacked me haha!
After my close encounter our final stop before Invercargil was the petrified forest. A beach of fallen trees that over million of years had fossilised and turned to stone. It was impressive to see and made even better because we were lucky enough to see a penguin waddle past amoung the rocks. It literally walked right past me, not a metre away! I would have liked to be David Attenborough at that moment giving a detailed description being so close...all I needed was his awesome voice haha!
So after all the excitement we arrived in Invercargil and there was nothing much to do. We went to the cinema, Mcdonalds for the free wifi and then an early night. We are off to Stuart Island tomorrow which should be great...Don't know what to expect but I heard it's the place to see Kiwi birds! If I'm lucky!!
Until next time.