After a day of glaciers, driving, and a LOT of photos, I have arrived at Queenstown, NZ. For the first night since I left Auckland I’m staying in a hostel tonight (or a Backpacker as they call them here). I want to stay right in town rather than on the outskirts.

This is, by far, the hippest town I’ve ever been in. It’s nothing by extreme sports, internet cafes, hostels, and outdoor clothing stores.

I’m also on my own laptop for a change and will be uploading a bunch to Flickr shortly. If you don’t see new photos there now, I’ll be doing it in the morning (afternoon US time).

Tomorrow I’m going bungee jumping.

I’m absolutely serious.

The rest of my schedule for NZ is Milford Sound, Doubtful Sound (if I have time), Invercargill, Dunedin (Hopefully to see penguins), Christchurch, back across the Cook Straight, Napier, and Auckland. I might try to visit the set of the Shire from Lord of the Rings, but honestly, I saw photos and it doesn’t look anything like the movie anymore.

I’ve been taking the advice that everyone has given me on where to go. Today I went to the Blue Pools of Haast.

4 thoughts on “Queenstown”

  1. ok, I was thinking of “most touristy place in New Zealand” – seriously, when NZers think of tourism, they think of Queenstown.

  2. While Queenstown does cater to the out of towner, it is far from touristy compared to some palces I’ve seen. Visit Niagara Falls, Ontario.

    Queenstown is more like a living Mountain Dew commercial. Young, hip Gen Xers

  3. By “hippest” you mean “most extremely touristy” :D

    Do they have trilingual signs in English, Chinese and Japanese?

    While Hobbiton doesn’t look like much, Mt Doom (Tongararo? Or Ngarahoe? One of those two) is still pretty visible, and it should probably be losing its snow by now. Unfortunately, it’s not really an active volcano: we save the active volcano (Ruapehu) for skiing on.

  4. To see penguins in Dunedin, go out on the Peninsula. Take a quick look around the town centre (the Octogon) while you are there. Dunedin was one of NZ’s “Wakefield Settlements”, and was originally all Church of Scotland settlers, and it shows. Christchurch was mostly Church of England, it also shows (nice Cathedral), but not as much. In Christchurch if you have time, a place to look at is the Antarctic centre where the US bases are all supported from.

    In Napier, take a at the McDonalds – it is Art Deco style. Had to be to fit in the town planning rules.

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