Invercargill was very nice, though we didn't really do anything too exciting apart from get a Chinese takeaway and go to the cinema to watch 'Rock n Rolla' which wasn't too bad at all! From there we headed to Dunedin, which is meant to be a Scottish town, although apart from the gift shops and a few of the buildings we couldn't really tell. We stayed in a little hostel just out of town which had a resident dog and cheap rooms, as the yha was fully booked. We had a wander round the main square which seemed to be quite touristy again-most of the smaller cities in NZ are quite similar, so we although it was nice we didn't really see anything that we hadn't before so didn't really want to stay for longer than night. I think we may have been better off to spend a bit longer in Kaikoura and Queenstown as both places were pretty amazing. On the way back from the town centre we walked past a per shop that had some puppies! One of them was in a little pen and was desperately trying to nose his way out whenever anyone went near it, and he was so cute that I could have quite happily taken him home, but Sam wouldn't let me as apparently we can't take apuppy backpacking.
After Dunedin we decided just to head to Christchurch as it's meant to be a bit different to some of the opther cities we've stopped at. It's very big and very clean, and has lots of old buildings that look quite English-y. There's a big church in the town square that's quite impressive, and there's a little market that seems to be here every day. They also have a tram that does tourist tours, but it seemed quite expensive and went around the same streets that we have walked around so we gave it a miss. There is also a little river and a big botanical garden, just a very nice place to stay overall. We stayed at the yha on Rollerston Avenue originally, but the dorm we stayed it had two other guys in it, one who passed wind in his sleep that was so loud it woke us both up, and the other apparently shouted in German in his sleep (this only woke Sam up suprisingly). We've now moved to the YMCA which is a fewblocks down and is a lot bigger-it even has a gym and a restaurant-where we'll stay until we fly to Oz on Monday. I can't get hold of my friend who lives in Christchurch, so it's looking unlikely that we'll be able to see her before we leave.
We've been having a look at hostels in Sydney and they seem very pricey-one of them wanted 116 pounds each to stay in a dorm room over new years! So we've booked a few nights for when we first arrive but aren't too sure what to do afterwards. We're hoping to go down to Melbourne for a week or so once we've been in Sydney for a week, and hope to meet up with a couple that we met in Fiji, but we may need to book a campervan to get back up to Sydney as the hostels are so expensive and it's unlikely we'll even be able to find anywhere so close to Christmas, although it will be a little bit un-festive if it's just the two of us in a campervan on Christmas day, so we'll have to see....
Sam's friend John is over in Oz on the 24th for a work trip, so we'll see him for a few days and maybe share a lift down to Melbourne, but that's as far as the plans go for now!