You'd think after getting to go somewhere I've wanted to go for a very long time that I would have posted pictures and blog posts about it a long time ago. After all, we've been home for over a month.
But there's something I've been wanting far more, waiting for far longer, than a trip to New Zealand, amazing as that was. And now a certain little boy is making that dream come true, and he's also making our house a busier place, and things like blog posts and pictures just aren't quite as important right now.
The trip really was an amazing privilege and blessing though, and this blog was supposed to stay at least somewhat up to date with it. According to it though, we still haven't even come home. Thank God we have. 🙂
So here's just a few pictures from one of the most amazing places I've ever seen. New Zealand doesn't disappoint, not even when you're hoping for snow-capped mountains like you've seen in pictures but happen to be there toward the end of summer when the snow is at its lowest.
The North Island
For some reason we didn't do our research well enough on which island we wanted to see and went to the North Island instead of the South. We remedied that with a ferry and a whole long of driving and an extra plane flight, but I think we were both glad we went to both islands. Still though, if you want the amazing scenery you see in pictures, go straight to the South Island. The North Island is more cultural, or so we were told. It was beautiful, too, though!
"In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit . . ." (The Hobbit, J.R.R. Tolkien) One of the perks of the North Island was visiting Hobbiton. Thermal pools somewhere between Auckland and Wellington. The picture doesn't do it justice.Our first glimpse of those beautiful mountains.
The South Island
We spent the night in Wellington and then took a ferry to the South Island.These next few pictures were in my very favorite spot. Funny, I always thought I liked green places best, and this place was all brown and rugged. But oh so beautiful. (And yes, New Zealand has sheep everywhere.)Just absolutely amazing."Where now the horse and the rider? Where is the horn that was blowing?" (The Two Towers, J.R.R. Tolkien) No question, we're in Rohan. What a place. Just imagine if we could transport Jazam here, and all of our friends, and for sure our families . . . I think I'd like to stay.The way the scenery could change at the drop of a hat was just amazing. Kind of like Oregon. 🙂We got our helicopter view without the helicopter. A winding gravel road went way up to a ski area, so we let ourselves in through the gate and enjoyed the sights from Treble Cone.And next we have the famous Wanaka tree. Which we didn't think was actually that amazing. Apparently it gets its fame just from growing in the water instead of out of it. Hmm.
Next time we're in New Zealand, we're flying straight to Queenstown, and we're spending two weeks, and we're going in the winter so we can see those amazing mountains covered with snow, and we're getting out of the car to take pictures every.single.time. we see something pretty (better make that a three-week stay). And we're not going to do it after spending seven weeks in Australia and having our beauty meter filled to overflowing . . . I never realized you could take in only so much at once until I tried to adequately take in two of what must be the most beautiful places in the world right in a row.
But New Zealand beauty aside, we are back in Oregon, and it's no wonder my beauty meter fills up so quickly. We live in one of the prettiest places around! In both New Zealand and Australia, it wasn't at all uncommon to see spots that reminded us of Oregon. So if your budget allows for randomly flying to New Zealand as much as our does (which is not at all at the moment), just come to Oregon instead. Mt. Hood is still pretty hard to beat.