Link April 2019 Link April 2019 - Page 52

travel The South Island Queenstown Surrounded by majestic mountains and set on the shores of crystal clear Lake Wakatipu, Queenstown is one of New Zealand’s most exciting and beautiful destinations. The area offers a range of adventure activities including bungy jumping, jetboating, white-water rafting, rock climbing, mountain biking, hiking and a variety winter snow sports. Thrill-seekers can take a ride on the gondola to the top of Bob’s Peak and then catch the luge or paraglide back down. Scenic light planes and helicopters fly over mountains, stunning fiords, glaciers and turquoise-blue lakes. Queenstown caters for tourists on a wide range of budgets, from some of New Zealand’s finest food ‘Sulphur City’ from becoming one of backpacking to luxury. It also has and wine at one of the many vineyards the most popular tourist spots on the a lively restaurant and bar scene while enjoying sea views. Waiheke North Island. Sitting within the Pacific and plenty of galleries and shops. Island is a 40-minute ferry ride from Rim of Fire, Rotorua is a geothermal downtown Auckland. Once on the wonderland featuring bubbling mud Christchurch island, there are public buses and pools, shooting geysers, colourful A resilient city that is the largest taxis, or you can hire a mountain bike, lakes, clouds of steam, natural hot in the South Island, Christchurch is motor scooter or car. Vehicles and springs, crystal-clear streams and currently being reconstructed after bikes can also be taken on the ferry. magical forests. the 2010 and 2011 earthquakes which Another pleasant day trip is destroyed many of its buildings. New Rangitoto Island which is just 25 landscapes and volcanic activity buildings and businesses are opening minutes by ferry from Auckland. visitors can enjoy an invigorating soak constantly, and the hype about the Rangitoto is the youngest and largest in a natural hot stream or indulge in a city makes it a vibrant, modern, of Auckland’s 48 volcanic cones, wellness getaway at a luxurious spa. creative and progressive destination. and is home to the world’s largest Rotorua’s most popular attraction, pohutukawa forest. This iconic island, the ‘Skyline Gondola’ is a scenic ride a charming, leafy place with lots with its distinctive symmetrical cone to the top of Mount Ngongotata of parks, reserves, museums is popular with hikers, kayakers and where you can enjoy panoramic views and galleries for you to visit. In sight-seers. over Lake Rotorua, the city and the Christchurch, you are never too far steaming landscape below. away from the mountains or the sea Rotorua Visiting Rotorua is like landing 52 After admiring the distinctive Other popular North Island destinations include Lake Taupo, The on another planet but its persistent Bay of Plenty, The Coromandel, The ‘eggy’ smell hasn’t stopped the Bay of Islands and Wellington. travel Known as the ‘Garden City’, it is and it’s quite possible to go snow- skiing and surfing all in one day! Other popular South Island destinations include Dunedin, linkonline.com.au