Marlborough Sounds Getaway

Waitangi Day is a public holiday in New Zealand celebrated on the 6th of February. This year, it was on a Tuesday and I have Sunday and Monday off so I was lucky enough to get a long weekend. I have been in NZ for a year an a half now and I have never taken the ferry from Wellington to Picton and vice versa so I decided to do it this time, my first trip for 2018.

I used BlueBridge and paid NZ$106 for a round trip ticket. It takes around 3 hours each way which is definitely longer than taking a plane but you get stunning views this way.

I stayed at Alicante Backpackers which was just around 5 minutes walk from BlueBridge Terminal in Picton. Very nice and convenient location. Clean but I find the staff or maybe they were the owners, a bit cold! Other than that, it’s worth staying here. My favorite is the hallway which to me looks sophisticated.

I didn’t do much on the first day except going to the waterfront and have my ice cream. 🙂

The next day though was an awesome day. I made a day trip to Lochmara Lodge taking the 9am water taxi from the town.

First thing to do is to have my iced coffee with this beautiful view while waiting for the conservatory tour.

This below while on the hammock is my favorite photo taken here. Spent a few minutes just embracing the serenity of the place.

I walked for about 4 hours return taking the famous Queen Charlotte Track. Tiring but worth it!

Just for $70 I got to soak in the bath house after the long walk.

So I felt and looked fresh afterwards. 🙂

Took the 5pm water taxi back to town. A day spent here can’t be anymore relaxing. 🙂

On my last day waiting for my 2PM ferry back to Wellington, I just did a short walk from Victoria Domain.

What a weekend! It was an amazing experience. Marlborough Sounds is definitely a must do in New Zealand. I’m so happy it’s ticked off my list now. I highly recommend this paradise to anyone who wants to unwind. Perfect for a weekend getaway and definitely a place to go back to. 🙂

Queenstown, Wanaka,  Glenorchy, Te Anau, Fiordland (New Zealand)

So I recently turned 30 in New Zeaand. It was such a sweet and crazy celebration for me. Check out My 30th Birthday Celebration and Skydive at 30 🙂

As part of my 30th birthday celebration doing Queenstown bungy jumping and skydiving, I also got to wander around Wanaka, Te Anau and Glenorchy and Fiordland Milford Sound.

Prior to Queenstown, I was in Fox Glacier for a month so being in a city was not so exciting for me.


I went to Wanaka to see that famous tree. 🙂


Then to Hawea Lake which I fell in love with.


Glenorchy was also my favorite. The views were just amazing.


Te Anau was also nice.



But Fiordland (Milford Sound) was incredible.


I stayed at Milford Sound lodge and booked their cruise as well.


It was such an awesome 30th birthday celebration. I’m so blessed. Thank God! 😊

Skydive at 30 

I wish I got to do this Skydiving on my birthday itself but due to the weather, I ended up doing Bungy Jumping instead.

However, mother nature gave a lovely weather couple days later which allowed me to Skydive. That’s right, I DID IT! Skydiving has been in my bucket list for a long time and I finally got to tick it off for my 30th birthday.

There are several beautiful places in New Zealand where you can do skydiving but I chose to do it in Queenstown through NZONE.


I decided to do the TROPOSFEAR for NZD 339. There was about 15 minute scenic flight to altitude then I jumped from the plane 12,000ft above New Zealand’s stunning alpine scenery. It was a 45-second freefall at 200kph which was the craziest, longest 45 seconds of my life so far! Then, there was about 5-minute parachute ride above New Zealand’s stunning surroundings.


This was a once in a lifetime experience for me so for my proof/souvenirs, I opted for The Ultimate Combo for NZD 319 which includes 4GB NZONE Skydive branded USB containing 40 mixed photos (although mine got 52 photos in it) and HD video footage combining freefall and handicam.

The photos were uploaded online 30 minutes after the jump and I got my USB after couple hours. I received my certificate to my email 3 days later.

I didn’t find NZONE’s staff in Queenstown’s office friendly except for Bill who was amazing. Other staff didn’t do anything but chat to each other despite having customers in front of them. The staff, the tandems (specially my tandem, Lima) and photographers at the drop zone are nice, friendly, crazy people though. Other than the bad customer service in Queenstown office, the overall experience was amazing.


I don’t think I got scared, okay maybe a little. I’d say bungy jumping freaked me out more than skydiving. I guess it’s because I jumped with a tandem so I felt secure. Here’s an awesome video of my Skydive! 🙂

 

 

This once in a lifetime experience for my 30th birthday costs NZD 658 and is definitely worth it. I’m 30 baby! 😊