South Island, Pt. 18: The End

Well, this is it. Much as it pains me, it’s time to bid farewell to the South Island.

If you’d like to plan a South Island trip yourself, here’s my itinerary:

Sunday, Feb 14
Fly to Wellington, arrive evening, take bus to city, walk to hostel


Take bus to ferry terminal, board ferry 9am. Ferry arrive 12:30pm Picton, hire car
Drive to Nelson (2h) Queen Charlotte Highway (stops for photos)
Check in YHA Hostel Nelson
Explore Nelson Town (Trafalgar Square, ANZAC Park, Royal Gardens, the Centre of New Zealand)


Drive to Nelson Lakes Park (~2h)
Whiskey Falls track
Lake Rotoiti


Drive to Abel Tasman Park (~2h)
Wainui Falls track
Wainui Bay


Drive to Marahau (~1h15m)
Abel Tasman Coast Track to Anchorage (24km return)


Drive to Rabbit Island (~30m)
Rabbit Island beach and walk


Check out of hostel
Drive to Greymouth (4h)
Drop off car at train station
Get lunch in town
1:45pm TranzAlpine Kiwi Rail to Christchurch
6pm Arrive Christchurch, shuttle to city
Check in YHA Hostel Christchurch
Christchurch Gardens, see city

Sunday, Feb 21

Pick up car
Drive to Mt. Sunday
Drive to Queenstown
Check in hostel
Lake Esplanade


Kawaru Gorge and suspension bridge
Roaring Meg
Queenstown Gardens (disc golf; discs can be rented at hostel)


Drive to Glenorchy (~45m)
Lake Sylvan walk
Drive to Te Anau (3h)
Check in YHA Te Anau
Te Anau bird sanctuary
Bits of Kepler Track


Drive to Pop’s View lookout (~45m, dodgy road in places)
Lake Marian track


Milford Cruise (Go Orange, leaves from Te Anau)


Drive to Queenstown (2h)
Check in to YHA Queenstown Lakefront
Explore Queenstown, relax

Check out of hostel
Drop car off at airport
Fly to Auckland

Bonus Pictures

Here’s some pictures which didn’t fit anywhere else.

I was driving along and saw this bridge. I had to stop at a petrol station, walk back, and get this photo. Worth. It.

Got this photo near the end of the trip, as I recall. Just a random scenic overlook off the motorway.

The End…?

“It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.”
-Bilbo Baggins

This is the end of my two-week vacation. But really, living in New Zealand is almost like a permanent vacation.

The road goes ever, ever on. Next time, we’ll be back in Auckland. See you then :)


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