In the morning Michelle and I got a shuttle to the airport so we could pick up our rental car from Jucy. Michelle had it all arranged and we were in and out within 15mins. Hanmer Springs is about 2 hours from Christchurch, so we had a bit a drive ahead of us.
Once in Hanmer Springs we checked into our hotel, the Hot Springs Motor Lodge. We scored a huge room, kitchenette and sweet bathroom for the night, plus we had a private hot spring, a massage and steam booked at the Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools! After dropping off our bags we wanted to do the Mount Isobel tramp. It is a 2.5 hour hike that takes through native bush and then to a snow capped peak – cool as!
The tramp wasn’t too difficult and offered some pretty amazing views. It had been about 2 hours and I thought we were about to hit the top, but to my surprise it just kept going up. Another ½ hour walk and I was at the top of the snow-covered mountain. It was amazing. Michelle had enough at the ¾ quarter mark and opted to chill and take in the view while I finished the tramp.
Then it was back down the mountain and off to the hotel where we had a couple drinks in the sun. We had our massage appointment for 6:30, so we headed to the hot springs at 4:30 to sit in the pools and relax after our hike. The pools were great! There were sulphur pools, hot pools, cooler pools and water slides. We hit up a hot pool and then I wanted to hit up the waterslides. We rode them twice and then a lifeguard called us over and informed us that you need to pay extra for the slides. He was super chill, as he then said we should give it another go and not to worry about. He was really friendly, asked us where we were from and what we were doing in NZ.
After lazing around in the pools Michelle and I then had our soak in the private hot pools. The private pools were secluded from the public and had chill music playing. Very nice! From there we had our massage and it was so damn good! Ive never had a professional massage, but I am a fan now! After about 20min of massaging I passed out cold.. it was so damn relaxing ahahah. The massage was a half hour, so I was awake for the majority of it ahaha. I think the combination of all the mountain biking, hiking and then all the pools just caught up with me. After the massage it was time for the steam room. That was great as well! We had a half hour steam – amazing!
With all of the pampering done we had worked up an appetite, so we headed out for dinner. After a good feed we were back to the hotel to have a couple drinks and then doze off for a much-needed sleep.
In the morning we headed downtown for breakfast and then walked around the town. Hanmer Springs is a pretty small community. Pretty much one street with gift shops, bars, restaurants, clothing shops and that is about it. We played a round of mini golf – which I lost and then did a maze game – which was ok.. really nothing special. After that it was time to head back to Christchurch to return the car and catch our flight.
I would totally recommend hitting up Hanmer Springs thermal pools. Very relaxing and a great way to rejuvenate the body! If you can hit it up in the winter, it would be even better! There are heaps of ski fields that surround the town too. The town is really cool, but I couldn’t imagine spending more than 2 days there. Ive heard they got some great bike tracks and may come back for that at sometime.
Once back in Christchurch we dropped our car and headed to the airport. We had time to kill so we hit up the bar to have a couple drinks and watch the planes take off and land. It was a great weekend gateway. I can’t wait for our next trip over the holidays. We are doing a 2-week road trip to Nelson!