Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Pepper Picnic Reaches New Zealand!

This little business of mine just keeps getting more and more exciting!  I shipped off my first order to New Zealand today!  So incredibly exciting for me! 

While my husband and I were living in Australia, we were fortunate enough to take a trip to New Zealand's South Island.  We toured the Island in a super ghetto campervan.  This was our first campervan trip and it was amazing!  We have since toured the Canadian Rockies in a campervan.  We can't wait to do another trip like these with the girls.  They will LOVE travelling in a campervan.  It's just so much fun!
Look at the hot steamy breakfast you can make once you fold up your bed and turn it into a table!
Our trip began in Christchurch, where we flew in and out of.  It is such a beautiful city.  From there we heading to the mountains, through Arthur's Pass.  I loved this tiny little town.  We did our fist hike here and it was our first time seeing and touching snow since we had left Canada a year and a half prior.
We then made our way to the Tasman Sea, and then followed the coast South to Franz Josef Glacier.  It was a beautiful sight.  So different from most glaciers because it's so close to sea level.  You can hike to it in a relatively short amount of time and once you are there, you can actually get close and personal with it.  It may be roped off now, it has been 8 years!  It was advised that you not actually climb it unless you were with a guide and in crampons.  Still, we were able to explore it enough without having either of those.

 You can actually see the carved steps in the glacier above.

From there we made our way to Queenstown - an incredibly beautiful town, despite it's high volume of tourists.  Any cute town on the water, surrounded by mountains, is truly my dream town!  Queenstown is known as a resort town and I believe it is also referred to as the Adventure Capital of The World. Thrill seekers have endless options for spending their money here!

That's a pretty big kiwi bird!
Instead of taking the famous Skyline Gondola to the top of Bob's Peak to enjoy the panoramic views of the city we decided to hike the Tiki Trail to the summit and then take the easy ride down on the gondola.  It actually got pretty cold the closer we got to the summit.

The ride down.
Our next big destination was Milford Sound.  We stopped along the way in Te Anau, another beautiful little town, where we managed to fit in some great hikes.  The hiking trails are endless in New Zealand.  It was awesome to have so many choices all the time!

Words cannot describe Milford sound.  It is literally breathtaking.

We spent the day on the water kayaking.

We had a long drive back to civilization (civilization for New Zealand).  Milford Sound is very isolated.  Our last big stop before flying home from Christchurch was Aoraki/Mount Cook, the largest and highest peak in New Zealand.  It's a pretty neat place to be if you have any appreciation for mountaineering.  Since we have been there they have built a Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre which looks pretty amazing.  

With the little time we had, we started the hike to Mount Cook but given our time restraint we barely even made it to the first hut before we had to turn around.  Maybe one day we will make it back here and do a full-on climb to the top!

What's a trip to New Zealand without a few photos of sheep?!  These sheep dogs (I think they were Border Collies) were amazing!  The heard of sheep were on the mountains in the middle of no where and along comes this farmer with his dogs to round them up and move them to another pasture.  The farmer stood by his truck while communicating with his dogs by whistling.  They truly do all the work, and they do it very well!  I grew up on a sheep farm and this was nothing like I had seen before.  I was very impressed with this farmer and his dogs!

I hope my little reusable snack bags cover even more of New Zealand than I did!  It`s a beautiful country filled with wonderful, friendly Kiwis!

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