Saturday, May 04, 2013

Part 6: Holiday to South Island of New Zealand (28 Nov-13 Dec 2012) - 9-10 December 2012

We all woke up early and prepared some breakfast and lunch for the day.
At 7AM we left our motel to Fox Township, about 30min drive to joint the Fox Trot: Half Day Fox Glacier Walk which was scheduled at 8.35AM. The price for this tour:

  • Adult: NZ$ 115.00 (GST incl.)
  • Children: NZ$ 95.00 (GST incl.)
  • They provided the crampons (a spiked iron plate worn on boots or shoes for aid in climbing or to prevent slipping on ice, snow, etc. ), socks, boot, backpack and jackets *if you can bring your own will be better, cleaner and not smelly*.
    After some orientation and explanation, we boarded into the historic bus to bring us to the glacier valley, passing through the thick rain-forest.
    Our group of 10 was leading by Lui, the guide. Lui quite knowledgeable and explained many things to us. Once we reached the ice area, we must wear our crampon and took 1 walking stick... Now we are ready to explore the glacier, walking on ice .. Yeeeeeesssssss.....
    Alighted from the bus, ready to explore
    the Fox Glacier

    Lui, Our guide for the fox glacier

    Walking beside the river bed

    We were on ICE ..
    We walked, touched, sat, posed on ice...
    We even tried to drink and eat the ice.
    Listened to the underground water ..

    We all were prepared with few layers of cloths in anticipated that the weather would be very cold since we walked on ice. Surprisingly.. after some walked, we felt warm ... and some took out the jacket..
    *some advise, better wear few layers of cloths to make u feel warm than a thick jacket alone. When you feel warm after some walked, u can take out the outer layer of your cloths*
    Glacier .. u can eat the ice or drink the melted ice ..

    Walking on ice

    We were on ice .. !!!

    When we back to the tour office, returned those equipment that we borrowed, then we collected our 'certificate' as a proof that we already walked on ice ....

    After taken our packed lunch, we went to Lake Matheson, about 5min drive from Fox Township (6km). But the Lake itself is not at the road side, we need to walk about 30 min to be able to see the lake. Since 2 friends of us were not with us at the moment, we decided to go back to motel and be back tomorrow morning for Lake Matheson aka Lake of Reflections...

    Our dinner tonight??? Beef stew ...
    Since today was a Lord's day, after dinner, we sang some hymns and had fellowship on man in God's history .................
    Everyone was so tired after a long day and walk .... so we went to sleep early tonight..


    We left Franz Josef at 07.30 for Lake Matheson. The best time to visit Lake Matheson is at dawn or dusk before the wind start blowing, when there is any breeze to capture the perfect reflection.
    Lake Matheson also called Lake of Reflections because when there is no wind blow, you will be able to see the reflections of Aoraki/Mt. Cook and Mt. Tasman on its surface.. exactly like a mirror..
    From the carpark, passed by the cafe and gift shops, need to walk about 40 min to reach the lake and 1.5hrs to return to the car park. There are few stops to take the pictures.. just enjoyed the forest and birds along the quite easy track.. More informations about the walks to Lake Matheson ... ? Click here or here ..
    The forest
    Do you see Mirror of the mountain?
    Aoraki/Mt. Cook
    Lake Matheson, Lake of Refrections

    After a short break at the cafe to take a sip of hot coffee *long or short coffee, anyone?*, at 11AM we continued our journey to Greymouth, the largest town on the west coast.
    At 12.40 we stopped at town Harihari, snacking at Pukeko Tearooms&Store. We found Indomie at this shop .. :D.
    Break for hot drinks and some foods
    At 13.25 we left Harihari for Hokitika, arrived at 14.20. We walked around the town area. Many shops, such as jade shop, souveniers, and others. After stopped about 40 min, we continued to Greymouthn, about 25 min drive.
    Clock Tower Hokitika

    We checked-in at Scenicland Motel about 4pm. After rooms distribution, we left for Punakaiki.
    Entrance to Pancake Rocks & Blowholes

    Bagio enjoying his 'giant' burger

    Punakaiki is known for the Pancake Rocks and Blowholes. In order to see the blowholes we need conditions that are right, heavy ocean swells thunder into the caverns beneath the rocks and huge water spouts blast skywards through the blowholes in a truly spectacular sight.

    We stopped at Punakaiki Information Centre, found out that the high tide for that day should be around 9PM. Then we just drove further down to find food for our dinner. We had our dinner, western foods, at Punakaiki Tavern.
    After full, we back to Punakaiki with the hope could be able to see the water that splash out from a hole because being blow out by the wind and waves... Unfortunately, after waited about 3 hours in the freezing weather ... the blowholes never shown on that night .. nothing blow through the holes .. Maybe next time have to come again and if we are lucky then we will be able to see the blowholes...
    Sunset @ Punakaiki

    Blowholes and Pancake Rocks *Pic taken from here*

    Back to our motel and room sweet room for that night .....................



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