In April this year, we spent a week travelling around the South Island of New Zealand. I had seen many photos of the south island, particularly on Instagram, and wanted to see the beautiful landscapes myself.
The first 2 days of our trip was spent exploring Queenstown and Lake Wanaka. We really enjoyed Queenstown. Being the low season, the town was quite, but it still had a great vibe. We particularly enjoyed walking around the botanical gardens and the food. Queenstown has a number of great restaurants and plenty great food outlets.
Our second day was spent driving to Lake Wanaka and visiting a few of the towns and lakes along the way. Lake Hayes was beautiful, being encased in stunning autumn colours, and we enjoyed wandering through the historic streets of Arrowtown.
Lake Wanaka was a lot quieter than Queenstown and perhaps not as beautiful. But we still enjoyed taking a walk around the lake and sitting on its shores to eat our lunch. We had wonderful weather, being not too cold, with sunny days and light breezes. We also thoroughly enjoyed seeing the autumn colours, which we don’t get in Sydney.
After relaxing by the lakes for a couple of days, we headed towards Te Anau and Milford Sound.
Queenstown Airport is located quite close to the city, about a 10-15 minute drive. We picked up a hire car at the airport and the way to Queenstown was well sign posted. There isn’t a great public transport system around the south island, so I would highly recommend exploring it with a car.
We are great fans of Airbnb, so we booked a place in Arthurs Point, called Studio 28, which is about a 10 minute drive from Queenstown. It perhaps isn’t the best place to stay if you want to enjoy the nightlife of Queenstown, but we enjoyed the peace and quite, as well as the beautiful views of the pine covered mountains.
We had a fabulous dinner at Sasso Italian. The interior was lovely, with stone walls and timber floor boards, and a fire blazing to make the space warm and cosy. The food was superb. I ordered the pappardelle with rabbit ragu (I love rabbit) and Jonathan ordered the seafood gnocchi. Both dishes were full of flavour and beautifully presented.