I began my trip to South Island in February 2016 with the Kepler Track. This was my first multi-day hike, and I’d started planning for it in late September 2015. I’d wanted to do one of the great walks in NZ, and so I began with researching on the Department of Conservation(DOC) website(very useful by the way), narrowed down through the various trails by hike duration, browsed through pictures of the scenery and decided to do this one.
So after Te Anau, I took an early morning 7am bus which picked me up at my YHA hostel and went on to Queenstown. Queenstown is one of my most anticipated places to visit, purely because it looks like a really compact town, with pretty urban features yet is surrounded by so much nature to see. Prior to arriving, I’ve heard of people who didn’t like it at all, because it is noisier, and way more touristy. I always feel that certain places are touristy for a good reason! And for most of the time, it’s because a place is so worth seeing, that everyone has to visit. Right? Albeit usually crowded for sure. Well, after experiencing a short stay there myself, I’ve got to say it’s definitely worth a trip down, and if given a chance again to go, I’d do skydiving for sure!I did my first ever helicopter ride there, and it definitely was a major highlight of my life!
Upon arrival in Christchurch, I stayed for one night, and then took a morning InterCity bus from the Christchurch bus interchange to Te Anau, which costs $30. The bus journey began at 7.45am, and arrived in the quiet town of Te Anau at 6.30pm, with a couple of coffee/toilet stops in between at Omaru and Dunedin. It was a long journey on the watch, but it really didn’t feel that long because of the beautiful sights along the way, and the half hour stops on between! Was quite happy to get a glimpse of those 2 towns I didn’t get to go. Omaru is famous for its penguins, and Dunedin basically reminded me of a larger, slightly more urban version of Akaroa.
Te Anau is popularly known as the gateway to Fiordland National Park, which was thus my ‘base’ for the Kepler Track great walk!