36 Hours in New Zealand By, drew marien

Go, see, and jump around on the Moeraki boulders. Stretch your hand to the heaven's for a memorable picture. Have a great adventure in the rainforest, or go catch the waves on the pristine beaches and soak in the sun. But no, at first glance you make think this is Brazil, this is not Brazil, it's New Zealand's South Island.

Moira rock

A beautiful country with a realm of mystical land features. Epic movies you may recognize like "Lord of the Rings" and "The Hobbit". History and breath taking beauty that can't be reviled by any other country.

Mt.Cook

But if you only have 36 hours, here is what you must do on the South Island of New Zealand. Use your time wisely. How can you do that, you ask? Here are the best ways to spend your 36 hours in the amazing country of New Zealand.

1) Fly into the South Island airport located in Christchurch and check into your hotel. Hungry? Yes, it is time to get some food. Just in the inner city square there is the mall you see here. It has some of the best hole in the wall restaurants with some amazing food. If you don't find anything you like here, just ask for the nearest fish and chips store, It cheap and delicious. Chow down and enjoy the Kiwi's and Christchurch for two hours an then start driving to Moeraki, it is thirty minutes away. Don't forget to drive on the left side of the road. Take in the scenery of the hill side and the amazing beauty on your way to the boulders.

Christchurch Mall

2) You must see the great Moeraki boulders. It is a great natural phenomenon. It is the one place in the world, where perfectly rounded spheres are made by nature itself. These boulders are amazing and they have withstood the test of time. They have been batter by the waves and withstood many storms, and still they stand. You could spend your whole day here exploring, but I would recommend at least two hours to take it all in, but there is still much to see.

Moeraki Boulders

3) Next, you must go to Kaikoura waterfall. This is not only a beautiful sanctuary, but it also holds a secret. This waterfall is a play land for New Zealand's most adorable animals, the New Zealand Fur Seal. It's worth the hour drive from Moeraki, just look at this adorable face. Spend an two hours here enjoying the seal's hidden habitat and just watch the adorable seals play.

Seal Sanctuary

4) Stay in Kaikoura and go check out all the different stores by the sea side. While your there, you must pick up Paua New Zealand abalone. It is a shell only found in New Zealand, and a must have souvenir. If your lucky, you might see some Hector Dolphins. I would spend another three hours in Kaikoura and find some interesting food to try like Paua fritters. It is the meat from the abalone, a try delicacy.

kaikoura

5) This day is coming to and end so you should relax at a hot springs in Lake Tekapo. Spend as much of the night as you want there, but at a minimum I would spend three hours at the hotsprings and then an hour enjoying the local cuisine. Try to get at least 8 hours of sleep. It is hard to leave because you can just star gaze at the hotsprings. Looking at all the different constellations can be mezmorizing. Just remember you have tomorrow and get back to Christchurch to fall asleep

7) Wake up refreshed, and grab your sword to go explore the Mountains of Rohan, from "Lord of the Rings". You will see the epic battlefields and you will even be allowed to play with the props from the movies. Get insider tips and secret filming information. This trip will take you five hours. Three hours of driving, round trip, and two hours to immerse yourself in the fantasy of the "Lord of the Rings".

After returning to Christchurch, you will want to take the rest of your 36 hours to explore all that Christchurch has to offer. Spend a few hours in the Christchurch museum, learning all about the history and culture of the Maori people. Visit the square, close to the mall you were at, and see the wide spread damage that was caused by the earthquake in 2011. You will see the Kiwi resilience as they continue to rebuild their city. Take time to enjoy the University of Canterbury and the beautiful campus. Lastly, as the local Kiwi's to help you finish off your trip with a final suggestion. WIll it be the Botanical Gardens? The Christchurch Gondola? Or The Willowbank Wildlife Reserve? The choice is yours, but time is of the essence. Your time will come to a close in New Zealand. But, in 36 hours you have seen the beauty the South Island holds. Your time will be forever a wonderful memory.

Credits:

Created with images by skeeze - "boulders moeraki koekohe beach" • Kiwi Tom - "Māori rock carving" • sheilaellen - "Re:START" • Christine Wagner - "Moeraki Boulders" • cowins - "new zealand's south island lake tekapo serenity" • jay galvin - "Christchurch Cathedral"

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