Milford Sound – The Eight Wonder of the World

A year ago, if anyone told me I would get to go to Milford sound this year with work – I would of thought they were crazy! But here we are a year later and you have one happy girl(and boy!) that got to experience Milford Sound!

During the easter period we had already planned our trip with Jarrod’s family to Moeraki for a long weekend. We ended up taking advantage of taking a whole week off (and only having to take about 3 days of annual leave – BONUS!). Normally for extended holidays, we head down to Arrowtown – Our favourite place, where we see Jarrod’s parents and just relax and take in our surroundings. This time was well and truely different. We set off for our family weekend away in Moeraki for the main part. We spent our days wondering the area, hanging out with family and most importantly – all having a laugh together.

Soon enough our time in Moeraki was up, and we headed off to Arrowtown for a few nights to prepare for our trip to Milford. We headed to Te Anau on the 25 April 2019 (Only after we went to the ANZAC Dawn Service). As it was a public holiday here in New Zealand, a lot of places tend to remain closed for the day or open later in the day. Te Anau is a very quiet town where things tend to close early. However we still found somewhere to eat and have a couple of drinks.

We checked into our room at YHA Te Anau, a Double Ensuite room. Warm, Cozy and perfect for us! We set ourselves up with a movie on netflix and prepared for the exciting day ahead. The next day we woke early, checked out of our room and headed to Milford Sound.

My job allows me to travel in my spare time and occasionally during work. Trips like this one help me experience our country and provide the best opportunities for my customers. I was lucky enough to be gifted this experience by Southern Discoveries, thank you for making this possible!

The day was gloomy – the perfect condition for a cruise! Milford Sound is hard to fathom, and put into limited words. It has easily been one of the most beautiful places I have been to.. so far.

Our cruise was the Discover More Cruise, 3 Hours long and totally worth every minute! This includes a packed lunch, Cruise and tour around the underwater Observatory. Normally packed lunches aren’t to much of a hype, this one was awesome. Fruit, Chips, a awesome sandwhich, cheese and crackers and i’m pretty sure biscuits were in there too, I way have been to hungry to notice!! Tea and Coffee is also provided Free of Charge on board to keep you warm while you take in the sights!

The underwater Observatory, I didn’t think to much about this at first. Yeah, i’ve grown up going on fishing trips.. but I didn’t realize how different the water and life underwater was in Milford. The water is incredibly dark, therefore species of fish and sea life live there including rare Black Coral (Which is actually white?!). The water is darker depending on how much rain they get. This runoff picks up tannins from plants and soil that stain the fresh water the colour of tea.

We headed back to land and called it a day. Overall, I had the most magical day – A memory I will never forget..

Thank you to YHA New Zealand/Te Anau for our accommodation and Southern Discoveries for the best day ever!

See you on the next adventure!

Our Trip to Lake Tekapo

In April, we were lucky enough to be invited on a weekend away with YHA New Zealand – to celebrate and trial the new hostel in Lake Tekapo.

Our weekend in Tekapo with YHA started with a tour with Dark Sky Project (Formerly Earth and Sky), Cowan’s Observatory Tour.  The tour is perfect as an introduction into stargazing. Dark Sky Project provide jackets and a red light torch for your tour. Red lights are used to reduce the white light pollution. It takes our eyes longer to adjust from white lights. Red lights also reduce light pollution. I found this page really useful when reading about Red Lights!

The Moon was full so this did change the viewing on the stars however we were still able to see a fair amount for how bright the moon was, this blew my mind! We were shown all of the star constellations that were visible. Unfortunately Cancer wasn’t visible!

As the moon was so visible, My partner managed to get an amazing photo of the moon. Our astrophotography was difficult due to the light from the full moon, however we still managed to get a couple of decent photos.

After our observatory tour, we returned to our room at YHA Lake Tekapo. We were lucky enough to stay in a Queen Private Ensuite (Lake View).  It was beyond any hostel experience! People often think hostels are only for young travellers, However this is far from it! YHA New Zealand are perfect for all types of travellers, Even families!

Our room was quiet, cozy and had awesome facilities. We were provided with complimentary Tea, Coffee and Shower sachets (Soap, Shampoo and conditioner). The room also included a hair dryer and TV.  Check out the YHA New Zealand website for more room types and information.

Our first full day was at our leisure, We figured we would make the most of our time in the area and did a day trip to Mt Cook. Myself and my partner had never actually been to Aoraki/Mt Cook Before. Shocking, I know.

The drive in was spectacular, we had a perfectly clear day. We of course had to stop along the way to take in our surroundings and take photos!

We had a quick pit stop for coffee at a local coffee shop and set off to explore the area. Unfortunately the Hooker Valley Walk was closed (and unfortunately still is due to a flood back in April which damaged the bridge), so we ended up wondering and of course taking more photos.

Our day ended at Our Dog Friday, for a damn good burger! Our Dog Friday is based at the YHA Lake Tekapo Hostel. A brand new type of eatery and bar for Tekapo. We often found it hard in the past on previous trips through or to Tekapo to find places to eat or go for a drink at night, as places tend to shut early in Tekapo – However these times are over! Burgers here are amazing, my personal favourite for dinner is The Red-Handed (House-spiced fried chicken thigh with cabbage slaw, gherkin, and aioli) YUM!! Also make sure you try the Cheese cake, it is easily the best i have had – and that’s huge with me coming from a baking background.  The Restaurant itself is modern, quirky and has awesome customer service.

Our Dog Friday also do breakfast burgers – which we were lucky enough to try on our last morning before heading home. I had Level’s Run, it was delish! After our breakfast we set off for home.

Thank you to YHA New Zealand, Dark Sky Project and also the team at YHA Lake Tekapo/Our Dog Friday, who made this trip possible and made it amazing! We will be back again! (to be completely honest we have already been back for food at Our Dog Friday last night!!)

Check out our collection of photos below.

Until next time!