The drive from Te Anau along windy roads leads up to the second largest lake in NZ Lake Wakatipu. We stopped off at every look out along the way (you just have to) and as such arrived late afternoon in Queenstown. After stocking up on the trustworthy wine in a box we decided to park just outside in a free rest area next to the famous Lake Wakatipu with the Remarkables and Ben Nevis as a backdrop behind us, this goes down as one of the greatest places we've camped so far. As it wasn't peak season we booked our white water rafting down the Karawau river and shotover jet without any trouble for the Monday, opting on Sunday to walk up a mountain 'the only free thing you can do here'. We took the sky gondola up past the bungy jumpers and began our climb up Ben Lomond a mere 1748m up!!! Needless to say the walk was very hard going and we only just made it to the top with Tbag suffering from cramps for the last hour. We realised why we'd done ti once we reached the peak - this is one of the best views in NZ and we've seen many tyo date. The peak overlooks the whole of Queenstown (you can see for miles and the whole of Lake Wakatipu) and the Remarkables mountain ranges so one can truely appreciate the name as we hope the pics show! After our massive achievement we raced back down the mountain and went out in Queenstown following the happy hours around the very cool pubs, the place has a very funky Ski resort and European feel to it with many of the bars having open fire places and cool themes! We ended up very drunk and very happy in a funny reggae bar where we tried to dance under the heaters outside in the cold to warm up and Tbag being the bag proceeded to pick me up and drop me flat on my bum while it seeemd funny at the time I have been suffering in pain ever since.
Needless to say 2 very hung over Pomes turned up for our day of activites and we were lucky that initially the sun came out for us! The Shotover jet is a lot of fun and our driver was a complete nutter wizzing us around rocks doing 80k and spinning us 360degrees at efery opportunity and then casually stopping to tell us the history of the gold mining industry in the area. We met lovley English and Aussies couples ot do the rafting with and were lucky enough to get the guy in charge as our guide. We got fully kitted out and doubled in size with our very sexy padded wet suite, waterproof jackets, life jackets boots and helmets - needless to say this is not a sport where one can look good. As we had the guy in charge Ryan we got spoilt and were able to break the rules a little, Paul even got in the freezing cold water and rode one fo the larger rapids (very naughty and fun until our raft knocked him on the head, unintentionally ofcourse hehehe) and then the whole crew of 4 boats jumped into the river off rocks 9metres high. Funny how all managed to swim to shore catching the rope apart from Tbag who got swept away down the river, luckily i didn't have to go after him as Ryan saved him on my behalf. By the end of the day we were exhausted and ended up in The World Bar for drinks and Nachos. Queenstown really is awesome and while expensive we really did have a lot of fun and are sure to return in Ski Season for a holiday:)