New Zealand December 15'

SQ's 777


One of the few countries that I have visited that has captured my heart. The people are friendly, the food is good and the atmosphere is relaxing. However, most importantly, the scenery is purely spectacular.


The most populated city of New Zealand's South Island, Christchurch was hit by a large earthquake in the years of 2010-2012. Many buildings toppled and hundreds were killed. Because of the frequency of earthquakes in the region, some buildings remain abandoned and many are still in the midst of reconstruction.

The ChristChurch Cathedral remains closed four years after the 2011 earthquake damaged it

There is hope. To replace the ChristChurch Cathedral, the city built the Cardboard Cathedral. Made mostly of cardboard and wood, the Cathedral was designed by the Japanese architect Shigeru Ban, pro bono.

The entrance to the Cathedral
The interior of the Cathedral, which is lit up by the sun
These sheep are used as roadblocks in the city center. Sheep outnumber humans in the country.

The Canterbury Museum, which has a voluntary entrance fee, explains the history of Christchurch and its suburbs.


Greymouth is the largest town on the West coast region of the South Island of New Zealand. The district of Greymouth consists of a population of only 14000, which is less than 10% that of Woodlands in Singapore. It lies on the opposite side of the island with respect to Christchurch.

To reach Greymouth from Christchurch, one way is by the scenic train. Views as grand as these can be seen as the train passes Arthur's Pass
Greymouth Beach at sunset


By far my favourite place in New Zealand, Queenstown is a resort town in the South Island and is near the famous tourist attraction of Milford Sound. Especially in the location that I stayed in, which was near the town's scenic park, the town felt cosy and well planned. St. James Apartments is located beside the river which passes through the town. A short stroll from it is the park. Walk 5 minutes and you would get the best burger I've ever eaten in 20 countries, Fergburger.

A lake in Queenstown Park
The town center of Queenstown is relaxed as it was not the peak season (usually in June)

milford sound

One of the most popular destinations in New Zealand, the Sound is not overrated and is worth a visit, despite its remote location. If one chooses to self-drive the entire way to the Sound, he or she could stop any moment to photograph or just absorb the serene scenery.

Mirror Lake
That moment when the clouds are at eye level, and you descend from the clouds to the sea.
On the boat ride. It was a rainy day...
A stack of 32 photos of The Chasm
Last photo in the Sound

Lake tekapo

With its very blue lakes and skies, Lake Tekapo is a must-visit in the country. The Lake itself is perched 710m above sea level and has a hydroelectric power station.

On top of Mount John
The Church of the Good Shepard, which I would visit later in the night.
Admire the beauty of the Lake


Lake Tekapo is renowned for its clear skies and near-zero light pollution. Almost no inhabited area of the globe offers views of stars which are as good as this.

The Church, at night
4-pixel wide shooting star
The Milky Way

Half-time: Flowers of NZ

A rose in Christchurch's Botanical Gardens
In Lake Wanaka Park
Unknown location
Wild lupins, an invasive but beautiful flower (Near Lake Wanaka)
At a winery

Half-time: Animals of NZ

A rabbit on Mount Maunganui
Salmon at a fish farm near Lake Tekapo
How can we forget sheep???

the hobbiton

The filming location of the high-grossing movie, The Hobbit. Intended as a temporary filming location, this site has been turned into a tourist attraction. Fun fact: this location was scouted by the director of the film and the land was bought from a farmer (whose animals were used in the film). The army also helped to build the set!

The guided tour was insightful, the guides were great and there was plenty of time for photographs.


Black sheep can spoil a trip: a few racist youths...

Other than that, Rotorua is relatively large but empty town, but with quite some places to photograph.

En route to Rotorua is the Huka Falls near Taupo
The Rotorua Museum
By the time we arrived, the museum has closed
Cenotaph at Saint. Faith's Anglican Church
Te Puia
A geyser!!!!

lake tarawera

Lake Tarawera is a relatively large lake near Rotorua, which offers spectacular views.

I don't think this was taken at the lake but just admire it, hehe...
Another angle

At this point in time, you would realise that my vocabulary is limited, or just that New Zealand's beauty is too much for it. It simply can't be described with words.

You would also have realised that other than a sole photo of Queenstown's center, you have not seen any person in my photos. Well, this country is a landscape photographer's heaven. 90% of the photos here are taken by my Zeiss 12mm lens, which is a must have for a trip to the country.


To experience NZ, you have to visit it as I would do so, again...

-The End-

Created By
Yeo Haw Lin

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