Our base to explore New Zealand’s most popular South Island was Queenstown. As soon as we landed, by sheer luck (or was it the sudden chill), we happened to pick up a hot chocolate from the inviting Patagonia cafe at the airport. Oh boy, that was the moment I knew I was going to LOVE this part of my honeymoon. There just couldn’t have been a better, sweeter, more scrumptious or chocolat-er start to exploring South Island.
We stayed at the Reiss hotel in Queenstown, and it was one of the best boutique hotels I have ever experienced. Although it was a 7 minute drive from town, I would still highly recommend it, since they have a shuttle going at frequent timings. We hired a car because we like exploring on our own. The views and the hospitality was fantastic.
Here are some of my favourite experiences from South Island! Enjoy reading!
This, I heard, was unmissable. I didn’t have it in me to jump off a plane 15,000ft above ground, no matter how beautiful it would be, but evidently, Shailin did. Watch his entire experience on my Youtube.
He went through N-Zone for this activity, and promises that it was one of the best, most thrilling experiences of his life
2. Spending an evening at the Queenstown town area/waterfront
Queenstown has definitely made it to one of my favourite towns in the world. Not sure whether it was its quaint streets, breathtaking lake-front, free-spirited people or the most INSANE food that made me fall in love with it, but it did. Literally every single person we met in Queenstown was temporarily working so they could earn a quick buck for a few months and then follow their passion. Some mountain bikiing, some kayaking, a few even making wine. I won’t deny, it made me questions my goals and aspirations in life and whether they were just a never-ending rut.
Here’s my restaurant list for Queenstown incase your visiting, and goes without saying, Fergburger is UNMISSABLE. We’re Vegetarian so these options might be tilting in that direction.
3. Wine & Cheese Experience at Gibbston Valley
We visited the Gibbston winery and took a 45 minute tour of the vineyard, winery and wine cave. We were taken through the oldest wine’s in the country, learned about the winemaking process and went inside New Zealand’s larges wine cave.
The treat was saved for last when we hopped into the Gibbston CHEESE valley just across the winery and stuffed our faces until we fell into gastronomical heaven.
4. Lavender Fields
I stumbled upon Ben Lomond’s lavender gardens while rummaging through Trip Advisor, and I knew I just HAD to go. To be completely honest, this required a lot of persuading for Shailin but he finally gave in. I cannot wait to show you the beautiful photos we captured here. Lookout for the next blogpost 🙂
5. Onsen Hot Pools
If you were following my travel stories on Instagram, you already know how much I love hot pools. But Onsen, seriously, was on a complete different page from the rest. We were escorted with towels into our private room with a private pool, secluded shower area and a spectacular scenery looking out over the Shotover River. It was a slightly chilly morning which made the heated water so much more than heavenly. Felt like I was biting into a piece of paradise.