For the final day in the Southern Lakes district we would take a bit of a tour to Wanaka. Up early as usual we hit up Bob’s Weigh for breakie. It’s a great little place downtown Queenstown that great food and coffee. After a good feed we loaded into the car and headed through Crown range, which I believe is the highest range in New Zealand. Once again, stunning scenery everywhere. This is the kind of road that buses aren’t allowed on as it is windy, narrow and steep!
The first stop of the day was for a beer at the Cardrona Hotel, located in the Cardrona Valley. It is one of New Zealand’s first hotels as it was established in 1863 because of the gold rush. Now a popular tourist stop, it’s a great place to have a drink and take a break while driving through the crown ranges.
After a beer it was back into the car and 45 mins to Wanaka. Wanaka is a small town that started because of the gold rush. Now it is your typical tourist town, with a huge number of people moving their over the winter months because of its close proximity to the ski hills. It’s located on the southern end of the Lake Wanaka, so it is busy in the summer with many locals visiting during their holidays. We didn’t spend too much time in Wanaka, as there isn’t much to do. Pubs, cafes, tourists shops pretty much own the town center.
From Wanaka we headed to puzzle world. Here you can find your way through a maze, (which completely frustrated me) visit the optical illusion rooms and try to figure you more puzzles from all over the world. We spent about two hours here and that was enough. I’m not one for puzzles, so not really my kind of stop, but when you are in the area.. why not!
Done with all of the games it was into Queenstown to head up the Gondola to watch the sunset. We managed to time this perfectly. Some photos on the viewing deck and beers in the pub. From here we had dinner at the speight’s ale house, where you can always count on a hardy meal. That pretty much sums up the last day of our southern trip. I love it down south and hope try life in the south sometime in the future.