« Milford SoundAmazing scenic drive to Franz Josef »


Added: April 13, 2010

Tags: NewZealand RTW city lake mountains photos
The same place can look completely differently when the weather changes. We could observe such a change in Wanaka. When we arrived it was cloudy and Wanaka did not look very nice. But next morning the sky was clean, sun was shining, birds were chirping and whole place seemed to be refurbished.

Colour of Lake Wanaka changed from ugly grey to beautiful blue. And the similar change happened with surrounding hills and mountains of Mount Aspring National Park - they grew from 2 dimensions into 3. My impression of Wanaka changed and I would put into my list of places I would like to live if I had one.

Disappointing evening

As the first thing after our arrival to YHA we went to reception and collected flyers about scenic flights. You might remember our scenic flight has been cancelled at Lake Tekapo. We selected 3 potential flights here - a flight to Mt Cook, flight over Milford Sound and their combination. We will see what will be available.

Receptionist willingly called to those companies. Unfortunately they were not flying in the evening and they did not know for tomorrow (due to weather). We were asked to try later. So we went to the lake and made short trip there.


Tree in Lake Wanaka


After we returned to hostel we bothered the receptionist again. She gladly helped, but the outcome was unfortunately the same. But we can try in the morning. It seemed history repeats.

With time to spare we went to look around the town. We checked local cinema (Lonely Planet mentions it), but decided to go elsewhere.

We climbed Mt. Iron. It is a small hill next to town where locals go to jog or walk their dogs. It provides nice outlook, but it was too cold to enjoy it. However it was not for locals running around us. Even those running uphill were smiling and greeting us.

Wonderful morning

And again we are at the reception, gambling with flight operators. Throwing in time of our receptionist and hoping to be lucky.

Receptionist tells us they are flying today, but all flights are already full, because somebody came before us. Strange, we thought we were in a queue since yesterday...

But then she called to Franz Josef and we won a jackpot! Not only we will see Mt. Cook, but we will fly with helicopter (flights from Wanaka are in a plane). Now only to get there on time - it is 4 hours drive through amazing country in wonderful weather. That can be definitely challenging...