New Zealand Wrap Up: South Island

I was pretty excited to get to the South Island of New Zealand.  The North Island was great, and everything I had read said that the South Island was even better.

The South Island –despite being the geographically larger of the two New Zealand islands – has only 1/3 the population of the North Island.  In fact Auckland alone is home to more people than the entire South Island.  Christchurch is the largest city on the South Island, and it is still recovering from devastating 2011 earthquakes.

Still, the people who call the South Island home live in one of the most scenic places on earth.

Day 1 (Golden Bay)

The North Island had treated us well, but it was time to move on to the South Island.  We got up early to head over to the ferry.  You have to be at the ferry and checked in at least an hour before it leaves.  And this is not a ferry like you typically think of (at least in my case).  It was huge – more like a ship at 600 feet long with 10 decks.

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Mt. Cook

We left Akaroa yesterday and headed to Mt. Cook.  Once again, the drive was incredible, but this time we also had snow-capped mountains! We stopped many times to take pictures of the beautiful scenery.  Unfortunately, the pictures just don’t do it justice.


Like I mentioned before, Mt. Cook is near the glaciers.  We were expecting this to be one of the coldest areas that we visit in NZ, but it was just the opposite!  It was about 80 degrees when we got there in the afternoon!!

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