So you might have thought that I disappeared, but I didn't. I have just been enjoying beautiful New Zealand. I spent a couple of days with Amanda and Shawn in Christchurch and then we went off in different directions. Amanda and Shawn went North towards the Kaikoura Peninsula and Matt and I went West towards Arthur's Pass. Check out our pictures and read about our adventures below.
**Day 1: **Collect our camper van (a van with a bed and kitchen in it ---so cool) in Christchurch and head across the south island towards the town of Greymouth. We stopped along the way to do some hiking in Arthur's Pass.
**Day 2: **Drive up North to Punakaiki to see the pancake rocks, the blowholes, and a fur seal colony. Then we drove back South to Franz Joseph to see the rainforest and glaciers there.
Day 3: We took a long hike up the valley to get a good look at the Franz Joseph GlacierA mass of ice that persists for many years and notably deforms and flows under the influence of gravity.. It took us about six hours and he had a lot of fun climbing rocks, crossing swinging bridges, walking through streams, and enjoying all of the rainforest plants. When we were done we drove down to Wanaka.
Day 4: We enjoyed the hot pools in Wanaka and then made our way down to Queenstown to explore the city and have Thanksgiving dinner.
Day 5: After a night in a beautiful bed and breakfast and a break from our camper van, we drove to Milford Sound and got on a boat to see the amazing fjord and all the animals that live there.
Day 6: We spent another day exploring the fjordlands and we went for a hike to Key Summit to get a better view of the mountains.
**Day 7: **We drove all the way to the other side of the island to the town of Oamaru on a mission to finally see penguins.
Day 8: We drove back to Christchurch to return our rental car (I will miss our Cruiza) and made some stops along the coast on our way.
After my trip to New Zealand, I would HIGHLY recommend it as a travel destination. It was beautiful, there was a lot to do, the people were really nice, the food was good, and it wasn't that expensive. If you ever have the opportunity to go, take it.