The two sides of Julius von Haast

Today, I left the west coast behind. I went over the Haast Pass to Otago. Compared to the trip four years ago, today's trip was totally different: The last time, everything was covered in low-hanging clouds. Today, we could enjoy blue skies (at least from the start of the climb towards Haast Pass). This finally made me realize how beautiful this mountain road actually is. Continue reading The two sides of Julius von Haast

Heaphy & Hippie

For the past four days, I stayed in a hippie hostel. Even though I did not go hippie, the relaxed atmosphere still made me sit back and do nothing much but short strolls on the river and beach during the first one and a half days.

Yesterday, I went to the Oparara Basin, as already mentioned before. Today, I finally did a three-hours-long stroll on Heaphy Track. Continue reading Heaphy & Hippie

Sightseeing from the Bus Window


Even on a travel day, you may have an adventure. My route from St. Arnaud in Nelson Lakes National Park to Karamea on the west coast was an adventure in its own right due to the rather limited public transport: First, I took a private shuttle from St. Arnaud to Kawatiri Junction (approx. 20 min., 50,– NZD). From there, I caught the Intercity bus to Westport (2:19 hours, about 18,– NZD with a 45 hours flexipass). Finally, I took a minibus to Karamea (about two hours, 35,– NZD).

As the Intercity trip was going through the spectacular Buller Gorge, I also had something to see on the way.

Up to the Angels

In the last two days, I went on my first alpine hike on this trip: a two-day hike in Nelson Lakes National Park, going from St. Arnaud (a village at the border of the national park) to Lake Angelus (in the mountains) and back. It turned out to be quite a tough hike, but it was definitely worthwhile – even though the weather was not as good as I hoped for. Continue reading Up to the Angels