Davi'd trip to New Zealand in 2018 with a "grand tour" of South Island
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Today did not start off as expected, went downhill and eventually ended with having a really great day.
Before we left the UK we had booked a combined helicopter and jet boat "adventure". The helicopter ride was due for 10:00 and when checking on it at 08:30 I was told that due to low cloud that we would be put back to 13:00 but our jet boat ride would still go ahead at 11:00. This was all OK apart from the fact that we had to find our own way around Queenstown, somewhere that we had no clue as to where anywhere was.
Anyway we eventually found the jet boat and got as far as putting out life vests on only to be told that a large party booked on the boat had been delayed and the trip was cancelled and was rescheduled for 13:00. As we now had an hour and a half to kill there was little else to do other than test one of the local "watering holes".
This delay also gave us the opportunity to have a look around the centre of Queenstown - it probably takes no more than half an hour to see all that there is!
Eventually the time arrived for us to be picked up for the helicopter ride - something that is (now was) on my "bucket list". The whole process was relatively straightforward and after a short safety briefing we were soon on board and in the air. the sensation of being in a helicopter is nothing like I had imagined, and definitely nothing like you see on the films - you hardly feel as if you are moving until the pilot starts to maneuver the helicopter. After a short flight we landed at the top of one of the mountains where the views were spectacular. So after a few photos we were all back on board and heading back to the base and it was all over too soon. It really is a great experience to do.
Next we were taken back into town for out jet boat ride, but this did entail waiting around for just over an hour in 30C+ temperatures and everyone had grabbed all the places in the shade. Whilst we were waiting we booked one of the local restaurants for dinner later on - something that was a good move.
Now on to the jet boat ride. We have done a jet boat ride before several years ago. Now for anyone who has never been on a jet boat this is a large boat that takes about 25 passengers and has a mad driver who takes delight in doing maneuvers that result in the passengers getting extremely wet from the spray. The whole ride lasted for about an hour and gave us the opportunity to see some more of the spectacular scenery that abounds here. It was only when we were getting off the boat did we realise how wet we were. Back now to our accommodation for a change of clothes and a shower before we ventured back into town for dinner.
Queenstown of an evening is "alive" and reminiscent of many Mediterranean countries. The meal we had was excellent and was added to by the atmosphere of the many people walking around.
It would seem that now would be a good time to invade Japan as virtually every other person in Queenstown is a Japenese touris!
Our impression of Queenstown is that it has some really spectacular scenery but is very "touristy" and commercialised - aimed at the adrenaline junkie.
Source: http://pear-tree.org.uk/blog/index.php? ... Day-2.html