New Zealand: part 1

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

I'm so excited to be finally blogging about my trip to New Zealand! Husband was there climbing and mountaineering for a few weeks before me, and then I flew into Christchurch just before Christmas to meet him.

It was his sixth trip to NZ so he had a pretty good idea of what he wanted to do and I just followed along. We rented a little car and drove all over the South Island for 2 weeks, seeing just as much as we could.

I LOVED it. New Zealand is such a stupidly beautiful country that my most common reaction to the scenery was, "Guffaw, I mean really, c'mon?!?!" And Kiwis, well they're just the friendliest people around. They're so helpful and obliging, it made it super easy to travel. In fact, writing about it is making me miss it...

So anyway, these are photos from the first part of our trip: Christchurch to Hokitika to Fox Flacier....


Christchurch: We were in the city for less than a day, and just missed the big pre-Christmas earthquake. I don't think I realized before I got there just how much damage these earthquakes have done. In the picture below, you can see what downtown looks like. It's completely blocked off because of damage. Above is the Re-Start Mall, a post-quake innovation for the city involving shops and restaurants being housed in shipping containers. Brilliant.



Castlehill: This was a brief pitstop for us, but oh so beautiful.

Funny story: I wore my new Black Milk leggings all day and I have to say that it took some getting used to the constant staring directed at my legs :) I overheard a guy saying "Wow, look! She has the Virgin Mary on her legs!" At a shop, I was paying for something when I felt a little hand on my thigh. I looked down and there was a toddler stroking my leg, completely transfixed by the pictures! Later that day I was walking down a street in Hokitika when a woman leaned over a pub balcony, only slurring slightly, to shout, "Where'd you get your tights?"

Moral of the story... Don't wear Black Milk if you want to be a wallflower.


Hokitika: A sunset and a coffee. Yum.



Fox Flacier: Ok, so this was one of the highlights of our trip. For my birthday, husband and I flew in a helicopter up to Fox Glacier where we spent the night in a hut. The flight up to the glacier was SPECTACULAR, and utterly terrifying! I can see why people get hooked on flying though, once you're up there you kind of forget your fear.


p.s. this guy isn't husband, just so you know :)


The hut is perched on a little rocky outcrop, surrounded by towering peaks and glistening snow. You can even see the sea. The view is mesmerizing; we did little else but sit and admire it.


We did do a little snow wander and climb, if you could even call it that. Husband loves mountaineering and ice climbing. My verdict: so beautiful but too bloody cumbersome!



Me in thermal underwear. Hot stuff.



See that little red dot? Yeah, that's where we slept.




Eating dinner outside. It was surprisingly warm!


My favourite NZ purchase by far are these hand knit booties. I adore them!



Backcountry toaster.


Thanks for taking a peek at our NZ adventure! Part 2 coming soon...


  1. Wow! Looks like it was an incredible time. Those slippers are seriously the cutest things I've ever seen. And I had to giggle at the story about the tights! How fun!

  2. You've left me speechless. Gorgeous! What a birthday to remember (:

  3. Those photos are amazing! I've never been to NZ, but a good friend is going on Wednesday, I'm sure after seeing her photos I'll want to go even more.

  4. Oh my goodness these pictures are amazing!!!! Holy cow, so jealous! Looks like such an increidble time!


  5. Kesh and I did the South Island back in August. Such a ridiculously beautiful place.

    Love your red shack.

  6. Oh my golly gosh! That looks so insanely gorgeous. I've never really been massively bothered about seeing NZ, but I think you have just changed my mind! x

  7. That hut and those mountains look so surreal and magical. I cant wait for your other posts! :)

  8. Ok, WOW! Wow wow wow wow wow. These pictures are insane. What an experience. Spending the night out there in the middle of nowhere, with no one around. Wow. What an awesome and unique adventure! I have to say though... I don't know about ice climbing... that scares the CRAP out of me!

    Can't wait to see part 2!

  9. 1) glad you missed the earthquake.
    2) what an amazing birthday! the glacier looks stunning. so jealous.
    3) i adore the new booties!
    4) i'm a new follower. hi :)

    - Cassie

  10. That is amazing! It looks like you've stepped into a picturesque calendar :-)
    Much love, Bailey from Vanilla Blonde

  11. I LOVE THIS! What an adventurer you are! I have never been to NZ but my fella has and we plan to one day get married there! SO amazing of you to share!

  12. Love love lovely, Romantic :) what more can i say =)


  13. i love that you're like eating dinner on a mountain yet you still manage to have perfect hair.

    i hate you.

  14. Wow! That looks incredible...dropped at the top of a mountain by helicopter? Excited to see NZ pt 2!!

  15. Wow what an adventure! Looks absolutely gorgeous :)

    Love, Sara

  16. I found you from Stripes and Polka Dots and I have to say I'm hooked. New Zealand looks crazy beautiful.

  17. Lovely pictures. My husband and I are going to be tripping around the South Island for the next couple of weeks, so these pics have got me excited! My husband has lived in NZ all his life but never been down south!


  18. these pictures are amaaaaazing. and your tights/thermal underwear are adorable. so glad you re-shared these!

  19. Beautiful, Gaby. I am a proud kiwi and love hearing testimonies from tourists travelling the gorgeous countryside. I am from the North Island and haven't been to the South for a long time, it's on the list of places to show my aussie husband!


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