I slept for a brief amount of time, and then had a very early breakfast again at the Dairy on April 15th with an incredible sunrise:
The BBQ Milford Sound tour bus picked me up at 7:15… the tour guide rocked, knew all the best places to stop along the way to the Milford Sound, told dry meat-eater friendly jokes that I think I only got (e.g. check out the hamburgers up on the right, when pointing to a large field of cows). Well, he was much funnier in his rendition than I am in repeating it. And he prepared a mean BBQ!
The bus was mostly filled with Japanese and Korean tourists, and a few people from the UK. I sat near a German high school student spending a year in New Zealand learning English, and a girl from Scotland spending many months in New Zealand as her Mom is kiwi.
I’ll let the scenery along the way speak for itself:
Finally, we arrived at the Milford Sound, which I think is probably the most beautifully preserved place I’ve ever seen. We took a two hour boat cruise which got a bit rough near the ocean side. It rained a bit near the end, which caused the waterfalls to come to life. I can’t really go this place justice, so here are some pictures and videos that attempt to capture the essence of this incredible place.
I basically never wanted to leave, but I had a 4-hour bus ride back ahead of me. I considered taking a helicopter or small plane back (there’s no view on the bus at night), but the storm that arrived eliminated that option. Instead, I got to watch a movie on board, “The Fastest Indian”, which was a great story about an old school kiwi engineer that set the speed record for a motorcycle… it did an outstanding job of capturing the essence of Los Angeles in the 1960s.
When I arrived back in Queenstown, I braved the 30-minute take away wait for the legendary Fergberger, and it was worth it. It’s one of the best burgers I’ve ever had, and a great way to end my Queenstown experience. Today was an incredible day.
And finally, a couple more pictures of Lake Wakatipu in Queenstown:
Up next, the start of Auckland.