• Natalie

Queenstown, NZ

A town so pretty that it’s hard to believe it’s real. We've spent our ten days here exploring and hiking around the beautiful mountains and lakes, and in line with our adventurous-though-not-adrenaline-junkies natures, we steered clear of the bungee-jumping, skydiving and jet boats that the area is well known for.

We are just about one month into our time here in New Zealand and we are absolutely loving it. We are currently in Queenstown and out of all the places we have visited so far it is our favorite. The beauty of the lakes and mountains is truly breathtaking -- so much so that it’s a little tricky to put into words.

Soaking it all in on the Sunshine Bay Track

The town itself is a bit touristy but for good reason.

Thankfully, we booked a lovely Airbnb about 10 minutes outside of town that allows us to escape the hustle and bustle a bit. It’s a unique spot, situated up on the side of a mountain in Arthur’s Point.

Each time we return home, we are enthusiastically greeted by our host's two dogs—Diesel and Panda. Diesel is the friendliest husky you could find and Panda is small but mighty and very excitable. We adore them both and have enjoyed getting the owner's blessing to take them on daily walks as we explore.

Judy, our host, has been incredibly kind to us and we have really enjoyed getting to know her. She keeps very busy with the two dogs, two Airbnbs, an impressive workout routine and an active social life, and we've taken her up on almost every suggestion she's offered, much to our own delight.

Meeting our Airbnb hosts like Judy has been one of the best things about our travels. It has allowed us to feel connected when we might otherwise feel lonely, plus we’ve had the benefit of learning all sorts of local tips.

Each day, we’ve made an effort to spend a good chunk of time hiking. With such majestic views, we’ve pushed ourselves to choose more challenging tracks than we might usually pick. This has had some mixed results (one fall by yours truly, as well as me saying ‘I’m not sure I’m going to make it’ numerous times to Max on the side of a mountain) but overall we’ve been very happy to continue to push ourselves outside our comfort zone a bit.

Mount Crichton Loop, Queenstown

It’s hard to believe we’ll be leaving in a few short days but we are excited to continue our adventures into the Fiordlands of the South Island. We’ll be making our way to Te Anua and Milford Sound next and are eagerly awaiting to see if we’ll be able to visit with all the recent flooding in those areas.

We miss everyone back home. Let us know how you are doing!