Last days eyes (Part 1)

After two weeks in New Zealand and my flooded trip to Byron Bay, it was a long time since the last time I went to the Bondi to Tamarama walk. Yeah I had done ‘the walk’ a few times when I went out running, but, it’s not the same you know. In fact I hadn’t visited Bondi for a long time: Bad weather, everyday rush, trip preparation, etc.

It was one of those warm and clear evenings when I started walking down Bondi Road, and while walking I felt almost ‘at home’, a four months home, felt comfortable, safe… and sad.
I had only seven days remaining in Australia.

A view of Bondi beach

A view of Bondi beach

Blue Mountains

Yep… It’s been a while

My apologies

—————

– “Excuse me, is this the one to the Blue Mountains?”
– “It is mate!”

So it began my trip to the last attraction I was going to visit in Australia, sadly.

The 'three sisters' at Blue Mountains

The ‘three sisters’ at Blue Mountains

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New Zealand wrap up

So, time has passed and it is time to wrap up the New Zealand adventure. (For the record it actually ended on February 2012)

This post is to do a quick review of what’s been going on the blog for more than a year now (First post con Christchurch here), it’s no secret I’ve been delaying this to keep the memory alive, as it could last a bit longer while there was something else to write, but the truth is there’s not much more to say apart from the absolutely great time I had there.

 

First things first, if you’ve come to the blog before, this is the map of the trip I’ve been writing about. If this is your first time, let me introduce you to the trip I did.

A map of my trip

A map of my trip

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Rangitata – Christchurch

Rangitata to Christchurch

From Rangitata to Christchurch

From Rangitata to Christchurch

Well this is almost it, I thought as I woke up before sunrise. It was time to leave Rangitata and the river, and head back to Christchurch. On our way there we made a coffee-stop at Rakaia, home of a giant salmon statue that must be feeling at home cause it was raining a-lot.

By the way, I don’t know what has these people with giant things: a sheep, the salmon, the big apple, turns out there’s even a list on Wikipedia.

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Mt. Cook – Rangitata

Mt. Cook to Rangitata
Mt. Cook to Rangitata

Aöraki / Mt. Cook to Rangitata

It was my last day in the Mt. Cook national park and I wanted to start-up early to try to catch the morning light.
I always love these pictures where you can see the top of the mountains lit by the morning light, with its orange/pink color, while the rest of the valley is still dark. (Something like this).

And because the Mt. Cook valley is open to the South West (map here) I was hoping to have a good chance to take my shot, so I woke up at 6 just to find out that it was foggy, I mean really foggy

Not much to see. Taken from this same spot

So I wasn’t very happy. It was time to pack up everything to go to Rangitata.

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Mueller Hut hike (Aoraki / Mt. Cook Park)

This is where we are going

This is where we are going

The day after arriving to the Aoraki/ Mt. Cook National Park, and after a very pleasant hike to Hooker Valley, I decided to do another walk, this time a bit harder.

I woke up at 7 am trying to catch some sunrise light, but it was completely overcast, so no morning shots. After sleeping a bit more and taking my time to have a good breakfast the wind started to blow and the clouds cleared fast, the sun was warm and the sky was blue, it was a beautiful day. So among the different hikes and activities I decided to climb to the Mueller Hut.

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Aoraki / Mt Cook – Hooker Valley hike.

I arrived to one of the hostels at Mt. Cook village, it was very clean and comfortable, the day was warm and sunny.

Hooker Valley hike.

It was time to put on my boots and start walking.

Hooker Valley hike. 8.5 Km

Hooker Valley hike. 8.5 Km

So I decided to warm up with one of the easy walks there are, this one is called “Hooker Valley“, and as you can see from the map, it takes you to the Hooker Lake. It is marked as a 3 hours return track (about 13 Km. go and back), it is a very easy walk, and it only took me the 3 hours cause I was stopping every 500 meters to take a photo. The views are spectacular.

On the way to Aoraki / Mt. Cook

On the way to Aoraki / Mt. Cook

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Queenstown – Aoraki/Mt Cook (Part 2)

So just to trying to catch up with myself, on the previous post I was traveling from my beloved Queenstown to the Aoraki / My. Cook National Park and I did a stop over Twizel.

I bought some supplies there, which in the end was really necessary, cause there’s no (cheap) way to find groceries up there, and taking a snack on the walk is always necessary, as well as something for breakfast and such, although it depends on the kind of accommodation you’re staying in.

So once we left Twizel we took the road to the Park that goes by the shore of the Lake Pukaki which it’s amazing by itself. But the backdrop gets better and better every meter, there’s a small parking to stop and be sure to do it cause it really pays off, well actually you may stop on every corner.

You should stop here: http://goo.gl/maps/X73Cl

You should stop here: http://goo.gl/maps/X73Cl

So, from this point you can get what, to me, was just mind-blowing. You know that “Aoraki” means “Cloud Piercing” in the Maöri language, and it’s easy now to know why, with 3754 m. it is the highest mountain of New Zealand and it’s shape like a pyramid stands up from kilometers away.

A view of Mt. Cook from the parking by the shore of Lake Pukaki

A view of Mt. Cook from the parking by the shore of Lake Pukaki

The Aoraki / Mt. Cook welcoming us.

The Aoraki / Mt. Cook welcoming us.

So the road went on and we finally arrived to Mt. Cook village, and as soon as I left my luggage at the hostel (really nice btw) I took this shot from the balcony of my room.

From my balcony

From my balcony

Nice view don’t you think.

Be back soon.

Back online

Well it seems a thousand years since the last time I updated.

I’m not going to say I’m not a bit lazy about this ’cause I tend to prioritize in the wrong way, but this time I’ve got a little excuse (I mean a real excuse).

Since the last time I posted and for more than 4 weeks (yes, over Christmas) I’ve been doing some re-styling at home, so to say. That means painting the walls, changing the floor, and windows so I’ve been really busy and surrounded by a mayhem of stuff that has to be moved from one room to another as they were available.

So this is kind of a sample of my living room, but you can get an idea of how it has been all over the house.

My living room

My living room

Anyway, thanks for coming back and I’ll be posting really soon.

Queenstown – Aoraki/Mt Cook (Part 1)

A recent “Like” reminded me that I’ve still some travel to tell about, some pictures to show, so after this (long) time off, I will go on.

Queenstown – Twizel

Queenstown to Mt Cook

Queenstown to Aoraki / Mt Cook

After some time moving around Queenstown it was time to leave it behind, sadly. As you (may) have seen, I used Queenstown as home base to explore a couple of wonderful places in the Fiordland National park: Milford Sound, and Te Anau.
This time I was heading another major landmark in the South Island, the Aoraki/Mt. Cook National Park. (Notice that this is the only occasion where the traditional Maöri name proceeds, the english name)

It was early in the morning when I woke up to pack my stuff, have breakfast and get on the bus. The hostel I was staying in had a breakfast room with a big balcony over the lake.

View from the hostel

View from the hostel *

* The smoke you see there is from the TSS Earnslaw. It looked much better at night.

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