After checking out of the hostel we decided to head to Patagonia chocolates in Queenstown for a smoothie and to use their wifi. We needed to sort out the car hire for Australia, looking to drive from Melbourne to Adelaide along the Great Ocean Drive. The main sites I checked was www.standbycars.com and www.hertz.com. Standbycars is great IF you can get the deal, they offered a one way rental from Melbourne to Adelaide for Aus$5.00 per day but the mileage is limited to 1,500km and you need to complete the journey in two days. Also the dates were not favourable with us. I ended up using hertz as I am a member of their Hertz number one gold club. The price quoted was good.
We spent about three hours at Patagonia, a Sikh family also came in to buy some drinks and sweets, their father sat with us and told us their life story….him and his wife are both doctors and run a hospital in Hyderabad, one of their two sons works as a doctor in Dunedin and the other works for Microsoft in Auckland. We exchanged contact details, he also told us that he has good contacts around India and if we do visit he can get us good discounts….! On a very personal note I have difficulty trusting people from India though he seemed like a genuine person.
After they left we continued with our internet work which was completed by around 4pm. As we were heading north to Lake Tekapo we decided to stock up with food, soups, gluten free bread….yes you may seem surprised, but sometimes we eat healthy! Saying that, on the way to the supermarket we did pass by Fergburger for our last serving of fries and onion rings!
We said our goodbyes to Queenstown and headed north on highway 6 then caught highway 8 to Lake Tekapo. The drive was amazing, driving past rolling hills. It started raining very heavily, we then saw a double rainbow. The drive takes about 4 hours and is very pleasant, the only downside is the 100kmph speed limit. We also passed beautiful Lake Pukaki. The lakes here have an amazing turquoise colour. This is due to ‘rock flour’ (sediment) in the water. This so called flour was created when the lakes basin was gorged out by a stony bottomed glacier moving across the lands surface, with the rock on rock action grinding out fine particles that ended up being suspended in the glacial melt water. This sediment gives the water a milky quality and refracts the sunlight beaming down, hence the brilliant colour.
We arrived in Lake Tekapo around 7pm and were lucky to catch the hostel staff before they closed up, they showed us around the very busy hostel and to our room, it was okay but we have been very spoilt at other hostels…..I am sure you know which ones!
In the evening we walked across from our room to the kitchen where Sangeet had a humus and salad wrap, I had soup and bread.
After dinner we went to the common room where Sangeet challenged me to a game of Jenga, in this game one would place wooden blocks on top of each other in a stack, one then removes a wooden block (not from the top, but anywhere else) without the structure toppling over. Sangeet won!
As we were taking Marlene to Queenstown, we also asked Ruth if she would like to come, she said yes as she wants to spend a couple of weeks there.
Checkout at the hostel, like many others is 10am. We packed the bags but decided to relax in the common area until about 12. The owner is very relaxed and was happy for us to be there, he even left the hostel whilst we were there. This is such a laid back homely type of hostel.
Around 12:30 pm we left for Queenstown, we took state road 6 north. It is around 190km away so about a two hour journey. About one hour 15 minutes into our journey we saw the southernmost tip of Lake Wakatipu. The views are amazing, as if we were just viewing a picture.
The hostel has a very nice energy, another homely atmosphere, there are no dorms here, the biggest room has four beds. The view from the hostel overlooking Lake Wakatipu are great. The total number of occupants who can stay at any one time is 19. The manager Cindy does a fantastic job of making sure the hostel is smoothly run. At the time of writing this hostel is the number one BBH hostel in Queenstown.
As we were all very hungry we had a wander around the town centre looking for a place to eat, no restaurant stood out (unbelievable, there are no vegetarian restaurants here). We ended up at Fergburger:
42A Shotover Street
T: +64 3 441 1232
The restaurant is open from 9am until 5am! Staff are knowledgable about the burger and sauce ingredients and can cater for all needs. Sangeet had a tofu burger, I had the falafel burger, with fries and onion rings. After eating a very unhealthy but tasty meal we had a wander around the city centre and along Lake Wakatipu. Queenstown is a touristy town, there is a lot going on, so different to Invercargill.
We had ice cream at
50 Beach Street
T: +64 3 442 9066
Pretty expensive, one scoop of ice cream costs NZ$5.00, they offer fast internet, the internet is only available from 9am until 8pm. The shop closes at 10pm so your best bet for a great coffee. Apparently, even the library here charges to use the internet!
Afterwards we walked back to the hostel, where some people had started watching a DVD…..not sure what it was called. It is very funny but with the majority of the backpackers being German / Chinese, Sangeet and I seemed to be the only ones laughing!
In some hostels we have noticed university students, they work and stay at the hostel whilst attending university. They would work around the hostel for 2 hours day and in return their accommodation is paid for. Also most do not like the student accommodation/life, for example drinking, messy accommodation.
In New Zealand some of the hostels are kept very clean, you could even say better then some hotels. In the morning the students would clean the showers and in some cases the rooms. Some hostels have a fantastic atmosphere where you would meet fellow like minded travellers.
Saying that you do get the opposite as well, where some hostels are just awful in this case you just stay the night and move on.
It also helps joining a hostel organisation, we are members of YHA, you get certain benefits the main one being £2/3 off a nights accommodation, does not sound like much but soon adds up!
Hi, thanks for visiting my blog, feel free and have a look around.Here is a bit about me, as you may or may not have guessed my name is Mandeep,I work to travel as opposed to work to pay bills and die!Every trip for me is an adventure, I have been very fortunate to stumble across amazing places and meet awesome people along the way.
Why gaygoat? When I first started this blog I was a vegetarian, so gaygoat – happy goat! Also you have to admit it is catchy and a URL you will not forget!