Tranz Alpine Train New Zealand winter Holiday 2012
What a trip man .
I flew to Christchurch to catch the Tranz Alpine train to Greymouth on the West Coast where I picked up a rental vehicle. From Greymouth.I drove to Westport, then on to Hokitika, Franz Josef Glacier and Fox Glacier.The locals known as 'coasters' renowned for their hospitailty and friendliness. This was indeed the case.I meet a lot of coasters and was treated to the famous West Coast whitebait The whitebait dishes appearred on many menus in local restaurants, pubs and cafes so I enjoyed it as much as possilbe The coasters sure like to talk and tell yarns and a few beers and a game of pool is a great past time in cold winter nights .Meet up with some braves souls on motor bikes from Christchurch in the local .They do a winter ride to the coast every year. A few beers and stories of close calls on the road in the ice was the main topic . A great bunch of guys and some very tough women .The Coast was full of natural wonders which included the Pancake Rocks at Punakaiki and the ancient glaciers of the southern alps at Franz Josef Glacier and Fox Glacier. After a great time on the coast I headed down to Wanaka/Lake Hawea where there was lot of activities on offer . I took a secnic flight in a Vintage Tiger Moth with Classic Flights Wanaka,.It is a piece of aviation history it was a step back in time with a Pilot who was larger than life, I put on the old-style leather flying helmet, complete with flying goggles and silk scarf, The exhileration of the open cockpit and the wind in my face was some thing I will never forget..So after a great day and a full on night in the towns bars in wanaka I moved on to Queenstown/Southern Lakes District for couple of days of adventure, Bungy jumping ,Skiing and drinking in the local clubs and bars .What a great place to party . The sking is fantastic The four main mountain skifields near Queenstown are Cardrona Alpine Resort, Coronet Peak, The Remarkables and Treble Cone. After two great days in the Queenstown of checking out all the adventure activities like the world famous jet boat ride down the shot over river I then set off to Aoraki Mt Cook, NZ's highest peak and into MacKenzie Country. Dominated by the peaks of Aoraki Mt Cook, New Zealand's highest mountain at 3,754 metres above sea level, this region is renowned for its clear starry nights, beautiful sunny days, remarkable turquoise blue lakes, valleys of emerald green and snow-capped mountains After a day of adventure and a good nights rest it was on to the small town of Methven , Hutt Skifield For a great days skiing and then sky-diving,Hot-air ballooning followed by the clubs and bars that night. .The next day had a round off Golf at Methven’s 18-hole golf course which to me is one of the best “country” courses in New Zealand, with mountain views and very clear air .just great. Then sadly after such a great trip it was time to return to Christchurch to return the one way rental car I had picked up in Greymouth and catch a flight back home .
This was a great hoilday and I found theTravel Planner for accommodation and tours a great service .
So make sure you check out this great country and enjoy what is on your door step .As New Zealand does have a lot to offer