I go to Extremes


Queenstown, New Zealand

the view from our Balcony (our hostel room had a balcony)

Queenstown is known as “The Adventure capital of the World.” The first commercial Bungee jump area was started in Queenstown, and since then they have been trying to figure out new ways for the adrenaline junkies to get high. In the winter Queenstown is also a ski bum town, which is exactly what it felt like when we were there. Mountains, Canyons, and lakes surround the area – but the town of Queenstown itself is even something of a beauty.

Perhaps the one strange thing is that with Queenstown being such a great place to chill, people from other countries tend to not leave. And so it went that every store clerk, receptionist, and bartender we met was not from New Zealand. As strange as it was, we can’t say we minded since everyone we met was so happy to be there. In fact, I already have a nice Welsh boy picked out for my 18 year old sister for when I talk her into buying her own one-way ticket to Queenstown. (Kristin – we’ll talk later)

So what Tim and I do with our time in this charming town…

Extreme Jet-boating

we're in the back right

The shot-over jet was a great time for a few reasons. First, The views in the canyon are spectacular. Second, it’s the type of activity that is thrilling (the driver comes within inches of the rocks and does 360 turns at high speeds) and yet you can do it any any age, and (unlike so many other nearby activities) your life does not flash before your eyes. They also have heated handlebars which is just plain luxurious for when you get wet – and you do.

Extreme Nightlife

The "Money Shot"

The bars in New Zealand stay open late – many til 4am. What I loved was that most of them were small rooms that could fit no more than 30 people, and you needed to travel down small Alleys to find them. The music bleeds outside into the Alleys, and from my barstool it wasn’t uncommon to see people dancing down the alley way as early as 11pm. The bartenders are happy to hang out and tell you all the secrets of Queenstown, and maybe even give you the “money-shot” on the house (as we were lucky enough to) but they will not tell you what is in the town’s signature drink. (The $ is Cinnamon – I know this much)

Extremely Pure Water

Caught a Salmon!

Queenstown is situated on Lake Wakatipo. According to our boat Captain, this lake is the second purest lake in the entire world – the first purest being one in Antarctica. The lake is so pure that they used to run the water directly from the lake into people’s homes in the area – now they just add fluride. We dipped a little jar into the water – and it really does taste great. Oh, we also caught to fish and then promptly had them prepared for lunch.

Extreme Swinging

The Leap

When one finds themselves in a place known for extreme sports, how can they not give one a try. I personally never had jumping into a Canyon on my list I felt I needed to do before I die (and those who know me would not be at all shocked to know the list does exist) but “when in Rome.” The Canyon jump is the worlds highest cliff jump at 360ft. That’s long enough of a free-fall for the following: “Holy (expletive…Expletive)” long pause “Oh my god, Still Holy (expletive…Expletive)”. In short, it’s long enough for you to wonder what happened to the swing. Years off my life: roughly 3. Still highly recommend. I would also like to give a shout out to my uncle who did the jump as well (I believe based on video evidence he may have become a religious man for a few seconds).

So ending on high note, we had to say good-bye to New Zealand. All I will say in summary was we should have spent easily twice as much time in this country!

The thing that counts most in the pursuit of happiness is choosing the right traveling companion(s).
– Adrian Anderson

guess what: NZ photos are up


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Tracy Riordan
    Dec 02, 2010 @ 21:02:40

    Robin forwarded your post to me. I cannot wait to read more.


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