From Wanaka to Arrowtown we followed the scenic route along the Crown Range Road, going through the Crown Range would you have guessed! The summit which the road drove through was 1076m. It was a windy up and down mountain road but it had beautiful views of the mountains! We passed the ski field in Cardona and also the famous bra fence (a fence full of bras).
In Arrowtown we visited the historic Chinese gold mining village that was occupied from the 1800s to the 1860s and read about the torment Chinese miners faced. The history and people we had read about at ShantyTown's Chinese Village was about the people who lived and worked in Arrowtown, so it directly linked the two, showing us the real buildings they lived in. Arrowtown is lined with Oak trees that had all turned different shades of orange which was a lovely sight too. The town centre is still preserved with historic buildings so it's like stepping back in time.
For the night we stayed at Lake Hayes where there was free parking for self contained- again many non self contained! The spot was lovely! You had to park between two signs, so it could only fit a certain amount of vans, on the grass next to the lake. It was a really nice place to stay overlooking the lake and quite a popular spot too. It's getting cold now- winter is coming! It is down to 3 degrees overnight and we are just about to extend our stay in the coldness! Crazy!
On the 29th we were up chattering away with the cold. We had the longest sleep in we have had in the van- until 7.45! Who would have thought that I would be an early riser now! It was too hard to get out of bed this morning though with the cold! It was a lovely clear day though once we were up and about. It's down to about 12 degrees through the day now. We went and got a big shop done at New World supermarket- it's no Countdown but it's the only supermarket around. We then went back to Arrowtown and had a wander in the shops along the one Main Street in the town. We spent the rest of the day in Queenstown. We decided we would drive down and see some of it for the day before we arrived properly tomorrow as it was only 20 minutes away. We wandered in and out of shops, all stocked with ski clothes and equipment, until we eventually, praise The Lord, found Nath a hat that we had been looking for for ages- the Russian type hats. He also purchased some very nice Rab gloves that match his coat to keep him extra warm in winter and I got some leather type gloves for myself. Queenstown was really nice! Definitely somewhere we would chose to go on holiday to and it's easy to see why so many people chose to live and work here from different countries. It is situated on the edge of lake Wakatipu which is massive and a squiggle shape. The lake joins the shootover river which the white water rafting is done on and has rough waters. The waves from the lake were splashing high up over the pier and soaking the pavement in the town. There are mountains surrounding Queenstown and far into the distance, giving the town fantastic views! It is still a small town but a lot bigger than most we have been to. There is about 10 streets of shops, cafe, bars, restaurants so it made a nice change to have more to see and hopefully it will have a good nightlife! After the day in Queenstown we headed back to Lake Hayes to stay there again for the night.
On the 30th we were up and headed off down to Queenstown. I have a feeling we aren't going to want to leave there in a hurry!