Base Auckland staff Catherine & Varun decided to visit Queenstown - New Zealand's adventure capital! Here is what they got up to...
One quiet day at work my colleague, Varun, asked me at work if I wanted to go to Queestown for the weekend and before I could even think about it, the word “absolutely” escaped from my mouth. With two weeks of planning: flights, activities, and a sickness or two to overcome… we were on our way!
The trip started at Base Backpackers in Auckland at 5am with a quick taxi to the airport and some breakfast on route! We landed in Queenstown at 9am and even with all of the rain, we could not get over the beauty. Our first day was spent wandering around the town, taking lots of pictures until finally we decided to head up the Gondola and face the Luge in the rain. Even though we couldn’t feel our hands because of the cold, going down the hill in those fast little cars was amazing. Seeing the view of Queenstown from the top of the mountain was a great way to see the town.
The first night we went to Fear Factory, a haunted house right in the centre of Queesntown. The staff at fear factory greeted us well and explained to us about the product. So it was time to face the FEAR ! It was a dark maze and you have to follow a red spot on the walls. The experience lasted for 10 – 15 minutes: screaming, shouting and fun. I would recommend everyone to try this at least once. After that we went out for couple of drinks. After all, Queenstown is well known for its night life.
Saturday in Queenstown was sunny, warm, and even more beautiful than the day before. What a perfect day to jump out of a plane! The folks over at NZone really took care of us! It was Varun’s first sky dive so he had a lot of questions for me throughout the day. WOW! Amazing experience that did not disappoint! The view of Queenstown at 15,000 feet is something that words cannot describe. Freefalling for over a minute with the sun covered mountains and lake in the background is unlike anything else in this world. As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words.
Sunday was a cloudy morning but we had a lot planned. The morning began with a chilly ride on the Shotover river on a Jet Boat. Doing many 360 degree turns inches away from the canyon walls was unbelievable. The view even with all of the rain and clouds was unlike any other. After we got back to town from the Shotover Jet ride, it was time to mentally prepare for the Nevis Bungy.
The build up before Nevis was something else. I bit all of my nails and wouldn’t speak to Varun for hours before. Don’t get me wrong, I was so excited! I just could not believe what I was about to do. After an hour long bus journey to the bungy pod, it was time to get harnessed and head out to the cable car 134 feet above the canyon. Getting out to the actual bungy was just as scary as the actual jump itself. We were there and there was no turning back. Varun went first, and after some hesitation, he jumped. Then it was my turn. Though I was shaking the entire time, with no hesitation I dove head first into the canyon. The feeling is second to none.
We had a long day planned on Monday. A full day trip to Millford Sound. We got ready by around 7:30am and the Kiwi Experience bus picked us up at 7:45am. We had a 30 minute stop en route at Te Anau. We reached Milford Sound at around 1:30pm for our cruise tour. You can just say one word about the place… BEAUTIFUL! Because of the constant change of sun and rain we saw more rainbows in one day than in the rest of our lives combined! They were everywhere.
Our last day in Queenstown was bittersweet. The sun was shining all day and we could not get over the beauty that is Queesntown. It’s nonstop fun when you go to the Shotover Canyon Swing. When they weigh you, they don’t write your weight on your hand like most places, they draw a quirky picture to signify your weight class. They have an amazing jump menu which you can choose from. The only rule is, if you jump a second time, you have to choose a new jump style. For my jump I chose to jump backwards, and Varun chose the chair of death. Every jump is fun and scary in its own way. For our second jump we decided to go together! Hanging upside down and being dropped by the jumpmaster at a time of their choosing. The view of the canyon and river upside down and falling towards it is an excellent way to see the beauty of the Shotover river.
Our five day trip to Queenstown was unforgettable to say the least. Five days full of jumps, adventure, and seeing one of the most beautiful places New Zealand has to offer. We can’t wait to go back!