I feel like a post is now long overdue but I have been quite busy these last weeks or too tired to take the time to upload pictures and write something. So rather than a long post, here is a selection of about 40 pictures taken during my 7 weeks in New Zealand, on both the North and South islands. I have also tried to update the map to show you where these pictures were taken. Finally, I will post a bit more in the next few days to cover some of the big hikes/treks I did and which I think all require separate posts to avoid surcharging the blog with pictures.
First stop after Auckland was in Hahei and I took the opportunity to explore the sea while kayaking
Still Hahei, which apparently as an air of Thailand...
Cathedral Cove beach, one of the main spots in Hahei. The rock forms an arch and link the two beaches on each side.
Next to Hahei was "Hot Water Beach", a beach where streams of really hot water comes from under (almost 80 degrees). So people gather when the tide goes up and try to get a hole in the sand while mixing this hot water with the sea water, to have a nice bath...
Next stop was Raglan, the most popular surf spot in New Zealand
And they even named the beach after me! :D
Learning to do the Haka with some Maoris... I'm definitely missing a few tatoos...
Nice water reflections near Rotorua
Fishing eels at night in a lake, here is my only catch of the night, but what a catch!
Bridge near Whakahoro
Same waterfall, Whakahoro
A few days later, here we are in the Tongariro National Park. Here is a view of Ruapehu.
Next to it is mount Ngauruhoe which was used to represent Mount Doom in the Lord of the Rings movies.
And still about the Lord of the Rings trilogy, here is the Tahui falls, used in a scene with Gollum (the second movie of the trilogy)
Tahui falls again, different angle.
Beginning of January, it was time to take the ferry and to cross to the South Island, reputed for its amazing landscapes and home to a lot extreme sports.
First stop was the Abel Tasman National Park, where you can hike or even rent a kayak and explore the surroundings that way.
Seals relaxing on the rocks in Abel Tasman
I call this bird the "day kiwi" for its resemblance with the kiwi which has a longer beak.
More seals around Punakaiki
Here in Punakaiki there is an interesting rock formation called Pancake rocks, because of the shape of the rocks which look like a stack of pancakes one of top of each other
Beach near Punakaiki
Sunset on Punakaiki
Waterfalls near Franz Josef Glacier
Thunder Creek Falls
And also on our way that day, we made a short stop to Lake Matheson. Splendid...
In Wanaka, I decided to sign up for a course about piloting a stunt plane and doing loops and other stunts... I'm glad my stomach held up until the end!
A day later, we arrived in Queenstown, little town set in a amazing location, between mountains and lake.
Our group in Queenstown
View from a hike I did near Te Anau, in the Fjordlands