New Zealand // South Island - 2.5 Weeks
Map icons: Yellow Icon: Food, Purple Icon: Dessert, Black Camera: Photography locations, Red Icon: Where we stayed, Blue Shopping bag: place to get unique souvenir, Green Lightening bolt: Notable Activity
Mumbaiwala- Upscale Indian Food. The inside is beautifully decorated and the food was amazing.
Hello Sunday Cafe- Cutest Breakfast/Brunch Cafe located in an 18th century Post Office. Serves breakfast Daily.
Bacon Brothers- One of the best burgers and fries we had on our trip. If you aren't a fan of burgers its located in a really hip building filled with multiple food choices but everyone can sit together in their community seating area. To add to the quirkiness of the environment, Bacon Brothers will ask you a random question depending on what you order so be prepared if the cashier asks you, "What Celebrity do you would play you in a movie?"
Okay, i'm going to preface this by saying Franz Josef is a VERY small town so there isn't a TON of food options. Nonetheless, we had great meals here!
King Tiger Eastern Eating House- This place has Indian, Chinese, Asian and Thai... normally we would shy away from places like this because of the variety of food but both our meals here were delicious!
The Landing- Breakfast Cafe. We loved this place and had breakfast here every morning here during our stay. Also, they have AMERICAN COFFEE with free REFILLS.. I know super exciting!! haha
The Cow- Pizza and Italian restaurant. Step back in time and get cosy beside their open fireplace. This was our favorite restaurant on our trip! Menu Suggestion: Her Majesty's Pleasure Pizza
Relishes Cafe- Yummy breakfast.
Mt. Cook National Park
This town is really remote and your food choices are scarce. We were staying at The Hermitage Hotel and rolled into town during a snow storm so we ate in the Panorama room for dinner and then had the hotels breakfast buffet the next morning.
Honestly, these meals were more of a splurge than we would normally eat. If there were more than 2 of us we probably would have ventured elsewhere just to keep costs low.
Run 76- Fast Breakfast/Brunch
Tin Plate Kitchen and Bar- Pizza, Ice Cream, Drinks. After having The Cow, this pizza was just okay but it was a good cheap dinner option!
Speight's Ale House- Pub Food. This was the original Ale house to open in New Zealand. GREAT BEER. We didn't have reservations so we got a small bar table but it filled up quickly so reservations would have been MUCH better especially if there is more than two of you. Also, parking can be difficult so leave time to find a spot.
Kelly's Kitchen- Breakfast/brunch. This was a nice surprise in a teeny tiny town.
Cardona Hotel- Lunch/Dinner. If you are taking the Crown Range Road or traveling between Wanaka and Queenstown than eat at the Cardona Hotel. Built in 1863, this is one of New Zealand's oldest and most iconic hotels.
Connor and I both had a bad cold so we couldn't do the Routeburn Track like we had planned so we ended up having a full week in Queenstown. SO we basically ate through the entire city haha
Bespoke Kitchen- Breakfast/Lunch. Super hip restaurant with amazing food and tons of Gluten Free, Vegan, and Vegetarian options.
Ivy and Lola's- Breakfast. Great food with a rad retro 60's atmosphere.
Joe's Garage- Breakfast. Good ole' down home NZ breakfast food and the prices won't break the bank! It is a bit small inside and can be busy but the wait would be worth it.
Halo Forbidden Bite- Breakfast. Good quaint place to get a bite for breakfast.
Fergburger- Lunch/Dinner. One of the most popular eateries in NZ. Burger and fries are all they do. You won't have a hard time finding the place, just look for the big crowd of people. The order numbers are displayed on the tv screen so you can know what number they are on after you order. Although the burger was good, the atmosphere was loud, crowed and IF you get a seat there are people standing around waiting on you to finish so they can take your seat. Honestly, we didn't really get the hype. If the lines and people aren't your thing just go to Devil Burger its JUST AS GOOD and you can actually enjoy your burger at a table.
Devil Burger- Lunch/Dinner. Alternative to Fergburger...in our opinion better than Fergburger.
The Taj Indian Kitchen- Dinner. This place was super good. We ate here twice because we loved it so much.
The Coyote Grill- Dinner. In case you are craving Mexican food like we were this might be the only Mexican restaurant in NZ.
The Cow- Dinner. Yes, this place again.. this is their original restaurant and it is tucked way on a small alley called, Cow Lane.
Tanoshi- Lunch/Dinner. Authentic Japanese Restaurant. Menu Suggestion: Japanese Pancake
Farelli's Trattoria- Dinner. Casual, rustic Italian restaurant
Champions of the World- Buy "All Blacks" rugby gear here
Hunting and Fishing New Zealand- Handmade in New Zealand carbon steel knife. Brand "Svord".
Bivouac Outdoor- Buy "Hikers Wool" here. Hikers Wool is made from 100% pure New Zealand lambs wool. You roll it into a ball and put it into your shoe in the blister prone areas. It wicks away moisture so you can avoid pesky blisters.
MUST DO THINGS
Franz Josef Glacier
Franz Josef Glacier Guides- We had booked the "Glacier Heli Hike". Unfortunately, our tour got rained out but better safe than sorry! So, you book and pay in advance and if it does get rained out, which it does often because it is the rainforest, they will call you and tell your morning of. Also, you will get a full refund and it shows back-up in your account in about two weeks. We were so bummed this got rained out for us but send us pictures if you get to do it!!
The Helicopter Line- We did the "Heli, Cruise, Heli" to Milford Sound. This was a big highlight of our trip, if not our favorite activity! We wanted to get to Milford Sound but driving from Queenstown is 3 hrs and 46 mins. one way and at this point we were so tired of driving so this was a perfect way to see The Remarkables surrounding Queenstown, go to Milford, get on the water and make it back before dinner! The ride to and from Milford is about 30 minutes and they do an alpine landing on The Remarkables. The Cruise in milford was about an hour long and was beautiful. Sit on the front of the boat for the best view!
Fun Fact: The Helicopter Line was used to film Lord of the Rings and transported the actors to and from the scenes!
Real Journeys Tss Earnslaw and Walter Peak Farm Tour
Take a ride on the oldest remaining commercial passenger-carrying coal-fired steamship in the southern hemisphere. This is a fun day for the entire family! We did the lunchtime cruise and farm tour. The TSS Earnslaw takes you to the end of the lake, then you have a big buffet lunch on a private farm, watch a sheep shearing (Sit on the far left side for the best view) and dog shearding demonstration, then hop back onto the TSS Earnslaw for your voyage back to Queenstown.
Aj Hackett Bungy
Gather up all your courage and take the leap!
We did the Nevis Bungy because YOLO.. and yes, I did just used phrase. If you are feeling like a swing is more your speed the Nevis Swing is popular and you can go with a friend. You could also do both the Nevis bungy and swing! It's just pretty pricey after buying the jump, videos and photos so we just did one... and trust us, you'll HAVE to buy the media package because it's a once in a lifetime experience!
Naturally, we (and our parents) were most concerned with safety. We picked AJ Hackett because was a pioneer of bungy jumping and really made it into what it is today and they have been doing it for 29 years with a 100% safety record. So, wake up ready to rock that morning and know its going to be the TIME OF YOUR LIFE.
Skyline Luge Queenstown
This was hilarious and SO FUN! Take the gondola up the mountain for one of the best panorama views of Queenstown. The Luge cannot be controlled without both hands (it's literally not possible) so bring your GoPro head or chest mount. For the funniest pictures put it on the back of your helmet so you can get your friend flying down the mountain behind you.