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New Zealand Travel Journal Part II

After 3 nights up in the Canterbury region we took a full days drive all the way down to Fiordlands National Park just outside of Te Anau. We rolled the dice a bit and went full on freedom camping. This means a camp grounds with no bathrooms, hot showers, running water,  etc. Of course we were the only ones there when we got stuck in our parking spot. Long story short, a caravan of traveling gypsies saved us with their tightrope string - no joke. We spent the evening decompressing with wine and beer on the shoreline looking at the fiords out across the lake.  Visiting the Milford sound was Matt's #1 destination of the trip and as they say we got "lucky" with a rainy day. It is one of the wettest places on earth. You are surrounded by fiords twice the size of the tallest skyscrapers and countless waterfalls. What I didn't expect was all the wild life - we actually saw penguins! Spent the afternoon kayaking around the bay getting up close to the penguins and waterfalls.

One of our must do's was a par to New Zealand's great walks. These are by no means some breezy walk, they are full on multi-day treks. We choose to hike the Kepler track to it's first hut, the Luxemore hut. It was 4 grueling hours uphill but once we got to the ridge it was SO worth it. After the 8 hour hike we struggled to stay up till sunset. We got our rest and the next morning we were off to the coast. We had left a few days TBD to see what we discovered along the way. We were lucky enough to have enough time to get out to the Catlins and see the magical nugget point light house. After the morning on the cliffs we drove up to the coast to Moeraki. Those funky sphered boulders are the main attraction of Moeraki.   Lunch at Fleur's Place was one of our first real meal since we had been eating in our campervan's mini kitchen all week. Fleur was there herself and we had the cutest little seaside brunch. One of our favorite meals to date. 

I'm so happy we decided to end our trip with a few more nights in Queenstown. After a week's long mental pep talk to myself, I decided that New Zealand was THE place to skydive. It was an experience I always wanted to have, and had been lingering on the bucket list for awhile. I got the guts to do the day of and luckily they had an opening. Wildest day ever! Smiling on the outside, full on panic attack on the inside. But I am so happy I did it! The trip was to celebrate our 5 year wedding anniversary which landed on our last day there. We finally took the day to relax. We did a little self guided wine tour through Central Otago and dinner in a quiet town called Clyde. The best part about New Zealand wine is that they don't charge for tastings. The south island of New Zeeland was absolutely incredible, next time we will need to check out the North!

xx, J

Kepler Track (Te Anau)
Moeraki Boulders (Moeraki)
Historic Arrowtown (Queenstown - Arrowtown)
 Nzone Skydive (Queenstown)

Fluer's Place (Moeraki)
Yonder (Queenstown)
Wet Jacket - Winery (Queenstown)
Peregrine Wine (Queenstown)
Chop shop (Queenstown - Arrowtown)
Bannockburn Hotel (Queenstown - Cromwell)

The Rees Hotel (Queenstown)
Milford Lodge (Te Anau)

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