Wow...how special is the scenery in the South Island. Mountains, waterfalls, lakes, more waterfalls! Stunning!
First night stop was a place called Marahau in the Abel Tasman Park. Went sailing on a catamaran around the Abel Tasman Bay and Islands, what a fun day...weather was lovely...I dived off the boat (good recovery on my lost bikini top...dont think anyone noticed ;o>?!!) then swam to a rock they call Split Apple Rock and being clumsy cut my hands on the rocks whilst climbing out...doohh!!
Stayed at a placed called Barrytown where we watched the sunset (got bitten to hell by sand flies!) at a most beautiful beach (pics on the log) and tried to spot the comet but it was too cloudy. The next day got up early and I went kayaking on the challenging Punakaiki River (well i thought it was hard!). I've done sea kayaking before but that was easy compared to this...through rapids which I was very nervous about, but I didnt tip the canoe so all was cool. Thursday 25th Jan was the most awesome and challenging days so far on my trip...I hiked the Franz Josef Glacier (8 hours) which was fantastic but knackering, took some cool pics...then you're never gonna believe it......
wait for it....
....is the suspense getting to you yet...?!!!
...out of a tiny lil plane from 12,000 feet..........WWWWWWOOOOOWWWWWWWW what a rush...
Still cant believe I did it! I actually did a skydive...my ultimate challenge(theres that word again!) so far. It was the most mindblowing sensation freefalling for 45 seconds at 200kmph then the parachute opening and silence...the views were out of this world...Mount Cook. Mount Tasman...the Fox Glacier...the forests and scenery...falling through the clouds...cant describe completely how I felt besides cacking myself at first then shear exhiliration...I bought the DVD and Pics (very funny you should see my face when I was hanging out of the plane) and also took some pics using my own camera which I've uploaded onto the log. Couldn't sleep that night with the adrenalin pumping through me still. So Queenstown here I come for some bungy action... bring it on..."whats" happened to me...I've discovered this little adventurous adrenaline junky in me...'where' has the timid Vic gone...how cool!!! Ohh and to top off that day I saw the comet, wow, not sure what its called (I know very poor of me will attempt to find out) great finish to a superb day.
I haven't been on the Internet much of late been so tired from all the adrenaline adventures!! Sorry its taken so long to get the log up-to-date, but here it is...and will update as and when...moving on tomorrow morning (today is Thursday 1st Feb). I've actually not been well last couple of days (eaten something that disagreed with me) which is a real nuisance as so much to do in Queenstown but am coming back this way before heading to Christchurch...so will definitely catch up with the activities then. A few of the crowd joined in the quiz the other night in a local bar and we came second, I went up to claim the prize and had to down a pint in a knock-out competition (guys you'd be proud of me!) with another girl (just as well not a bloke as I would have lost but was told after I downed it v quickly my competitive side coming out again!)...I won...yay...the prize was a free river surfing/sledging adventure which i'll do next time am in QT...how funny!!
The whole trip in New Zealand so far as been absolutely fantastic (I know I will have to think of another amazing word to replace ab fab!), I have fallen in love with the place, but I am looking forward to Oz in a few weeks for some well earned chill out time (yeah right) and give my poor feet a rest....Sweet As!!!!
What I've been up to - today is Sunday 11th Feb - Well as most of you can see by the pics I did a bungy jump, not the Nevis but it certainly had the same fear factor as I was standing on the ledge looking down, knowing I was the one that had to make myself jump off the ledge towards the rocks and water. I actually was more scared at that moment than jumping out of the plane. I went into the water upto top of my arms and top of my head, I didn't fully emerse which I was pleased about, couldn't believe how far I sprung back up though...I think everyone should experience the bungy, it certainly gets the adrenaline pumping through the veins, not sure I'll do it again mind you, but very glad I got pushed into trying it! The DVD is funny, had to buy it just for the amusement of seeing how scary it was all over again, I was screaming then half way down lost my voice as my throat was so dry!
Myself and a few others on the bus got off at a place called Rangitata (2 hours south of Christchurch) to do the white water rafting, apparently its NZ's best grade 5 river adventure. We stayed overnight at a lovely lodge, although sleeping in a 10 person - 3 triple bunk bedded room was a cosy experience! Again I was nervous before we started out having heard lots of stories about the grade 5 rapids etc, but we all worked really well as a team and the 3.5 hour trip went sooo quickly, it was great fun, I was disappointed once it finished...could have done it all over again...when I had time to look around the scenery was amazing...the water was glacial vvv cold...so something else I have discovered I enjoy... hopefully will get to do some more wwr before leaving NZ.
Sat 10th Feb - I got on an Intercity bus and travelled north of Christchurch for 2.5 hours to a place called Kaikoura (east coast) where I'm staying for 3 days. I organised a trip for 5.30am (sunrise )Monday (12th - btw Happy 30th Gavster!!) swimming with the dusky dolphins on the Kaikoura coastline. I've been sooo looking forward to this, its one of my dreams to swim with wild dolphins, I felt like a big kid, very nervously excitable. The weather was absolutely sh**e, very rough actually, since being on the South Island its only been sunny about 5 days out of the 2 weeks or so I've been here... its supposed to be summer! I was in a very small boat which took bit of a battering, but once i spotted the dolphins jumping out of the water in the wake of the boat, i forgot how rough the sea was (just as well I'm a strong swimmer)...i couldn't wait to get in the water with them, there were hundreds, not exaggerating I promise...it was amazing, there were at least 4 dolphins swimming around me all the time and doing acrobatics everywhere...they were even getting a little frisky (not with me with eachother!!) and a couple decided to have a little nooky just near me, how funny! I had to help a lady back to the boat as she had a panic attack but she was ok once back on board. As the sea was rough the visibility was poor under the water, I couldn't see too much when I dived down but they liked it when you interacted with them, wow it was so much fun and what an experience. They are captivating creatures, completely and totally wild and we were there for their amusement...a memory I wont forget, and worth being seasick for!
So back to Christchurch today (13th Feb), for some R&R for a couple of days until I decide what to do next. I really like Christchurch it reminds me of the UK, parts of it are very English/ European, very different from the other big towns, its all quite relaxed, makes a change from the "do or die" activities everywhere else in NZ! I have about 2 and half weeks left cant believe where the time has gone, not sure what I'll be doing for the rest of the trip yet. I have considered Fiji for a week as its so cheap and near or going back to the Bay of Islands on the NI to try and do some diving at Poor Knights, decisions decisions, but will update the log once I've decided. Bye for now...X
Wed 29th Feb - Hey you guys - back in Christchurch now. I got a flight up to Auckland on 17th and then a bus to Paihia in the Bay of Islands where I stayed for a week. The weather was gorgeous, who needs to go to Fiji! Got to chill out and actually read my book for the first time in months! I didn't do anything too spetacular, sat on the beach, took a speepboat out to the whole in the rock and spotted whales, did some parasailing, and caught up with some UK friends who emigrated to KeriKeri about 4 years ago, which was lovely, thank you Avis, Rowan and Al for looking after me and feeding me some homecooked food, lovely!
I fly to Sydney on Friday 2nd March, George's mum Margaret and her husband Geoff are picking me up. I'll be staying with them for a few days until I sort out my trip around Oz...3 months of very hot sticky weather...think I'm going to miss the climate and greenery in NZ so much, but am looking forward to moving on in the next chapter of my adventures..."what" else can I get up to, "what" other activities can I do that I haven't already done...watch this space...Oz here I come...bring it on!!
I'm certainly "living the dream"!