Ball rolling is a simple idea. A person or persons get inside a huge ball, like being inside spherical bubble wrap, the ball is half-filled with some water, and then rolled down a hill. Sounds fun to me. Sometimes referred to as zorbing, the best place to zorb in Rotorua is OGO. I reviewed OGO to get you all the information you need.
My parents and I travelled up to the beach resort of Paihia, Bay of Islands for the last weekend in January. They had just flown in from Christchurch after spending 4 nights at Arrowsmith Lodge, which is a totally isolated private lodging, complete with its very own private lake. How posh.
I was great to reunite with my parents after our joint trip to the South Island. I met them at Auckland airport around 2pm and we headed straight up the highway towards the Northlands. It took us under 3 hours, which is pretty good for a Friday afternoon. The drive up is lovely too, just like the majority of drives in New Zealand.
We left our motel in Te Anau nice and early to go back past Queenstown and headed towards the Fox Glacier and Franz Josef Glacier areas. It was a long drive so Dad and I shared the driving.
As we approached the Fox Glacier, I mentioned that our luck with the weather (glorious sunshine for two weeks) may have run out. The grey clouds were descending rapidly around the peaks above us, and we crossed our fingers and wished for it to clear for tomorrow. Continue reading “Fox Glacier and Franz Josef Glacier – how not to see them”
What to do on a day in Queenstown? It is the adventure capital of the world, but when you’re on a budget that means nothing! My parents and I opted for the luge. The luge is a go kart type contraption that is powered by gravity. The long race track is fun with humps and corners galore, and a great view over Queenstown to boot. The first time you race down the track you are given a quick intro (brake by pulling the handlebars, don’t kill yourself etc) and you have to race on the slow track, recommended for kids and families.
Milford Sound and Te Anau are not only beautiful in their own right, but the journey to and from them is breathtaking too.
I set off with my parents relatively early as we had to be at Milford by a certain time for our eagerly anticipated overnight cruise on ‘the beautiful sound’. We made it there around 1pm and had plenty of time to grab a a bite to eat (at the overpriced cafe that holds a monopoly over the area) before boarding our vessel. As we boarded the ship I thought that it looked like it would struggle to accommodate 35 guests plus a crew.
It was the beginning of January, and we rose early to start a few hours drive down the coast to Invercargill. It is here that I would be swimming with great white sharks, along with my parents.
The journey was broken up by a standard sight in New Zealand, cattle crossing the road. You don’t get that in London. We had planned a halfway point stop for lunch at The Whistling Frog, near the Tautuku River. We eventually found the Frog and enjoyed a decent meal. We saw an abundance of signs for ‘McLean Falls’ nearby, so thought we would take the opportunity to check it out.
The East coast of the South Island can be great for kids and adults alike, but to be honest there are plenty of fun things to do with kids in New Zealand.
I was lucky enough to break up for my New Year holiday on the 23rd December and not have to return to work until January 19th.
I had been invited by my lovely neighbours to an Xmas BBQ and drinks at the harbour (they all work on superyachts). It was a hot day, and what I can remember of it was great. Some pretty embarrassing photos though, and I have a vague memory of jumping into the sea in my underwear. I will spare everyone those photos.
Anyway, my parents, who have always fancied New Zealand, agreed to fly half way around the world to have a break and see their travelling son.