Where two next?

Antipodean travelogue through the eyes of two - one textile and one building lover. It'll be hard to differentiate the two!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Greymouth to Christchurch via Arthur's Pass Day 15

It's hard to believe it's now the middle of July and I still haven't finished blogging about our trip down South back in May! For those of you who are as bored as I am, I can assure you that the finishing line is close at hand.

This is the last post of our trip down south. After leaving back the camper van on Day 15 we flew from Christchurch to Rotorua in the North Island the following day. We would spend our final few days here before heading back to Wellington. But back to todays post.

After the heli-hike we arrived into Greymouth late that evening and stayed in yet another Top 10. We found these camper van sites to be the best value for money on our trip. The rain yet again bucketed down that night but it didn't affect us really as Greymouth was a place to stop over not explore.

We got up early the following day and headed towards Christchurch via Arthur's Pass to leave back the camper van. We awoke to a pleasant morning and as we were heading back east across the Southern Alps the weather would most likely be good for the entire trip. The Tranzalpine, one of the worlds great railway journeys- it even has it's own special section in the Lonely Planet, unlike the Taieri Gorge Experience I might add- runs from Greymouth to Christchurch also. I do not know how much the road trip differs from the rail but the scenery was very beautiful yet again.

The road rises to it's peak approximately 4km from the small town of Arthur's Pass. Arthur's Pass being the highest altitude NZ town and it's more or less all down hill from there but not when it comes to the scenery. It was after Arthur's Pass that we stopped to take the following photographs.

Unfortunately I am not sure where exactly we were at the time but it was not long after Arthur's Pass in any event. Here's a pic we took a little further down the road. At this stage we had crossed the Alps and the more arid climate was evident.

We stopped off in the town of Springfield, and had a really nice home made lunch in a local cafe. There was no sign of Homer and the clan however. I wonder if the NZ premier of the new Simpson's movie will debut here? Do they even have a cinema? After lunch it was back on the road for the final leg of what was a really memorable trip down South.

So what were the highlights? Well there was many and perhaps highlighting a few is a little unfair as the best outweighed the better by the slightest of margins. Having said all that, if I had a limit on the amount of time we had down South, and armed with what I know now, I would make sure to visit Mount Cook, Milford Sound and heli-hike on the Fox or Franz Josef glaciers. But you could have probably guessed that from our previous posts!

If I had to pick a place to recommend for something to eat it would probably be Fleurs Place in Moeraki Village on the East Coast. If I had to pick a city it would have to be Queenstown.

What would I not do again, well I think I have hinted at a few disappointments along the way!

All in all though a great trip with some amazing scenery, it's difficult to comprehend and appreciate the fact that we will probably never be to any of these places again.

As we would say back at home, "more's the pity!"


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