From Queenstown I took a separate bus again with the same company for a four day trip around the south. First stop was Milford Sound - this is one of the must sees of new zealand. The drive from Te Anue to Milford Sound takes about 2 hours through scenery like I have never seen and only photos - to come - can explain how amazing the fiordland is. I took a boat trip through the sound which has amazing waterfalls, crystal clear seas and we were lucky enough to be there on one of the few days it doesn't rain. From Milford we headed to the sausage capital of NZ, apparantly so called beacuse of the technique they use to hand make sausages. So of course for dinner we had bangers and mash at the hostel and then down to the local for the wine tasting evening with 5 of the girls. The wine tasting turned out to be champagne - excellent! I ended up next to the locals...Ray a farmer, Al a sheep shearer and Des a deer hunter. They kept me entertained for the evening and it did remind me of the Red Lion!
The following morning was an early rise to Ray's farm to get to feed the lambs, watch rounding up the sheep and then a chance a sheep shearing! It just had to be done in NZ! Followed by more sausages for breakfast. I then went over to Stewert Island for the night the crossing in notoriously rough but luckly we were all alright, even after the wine tasting! Stewert Island was just fantastic I was unsure if i'd enjoy the place as it is meant to be so remote. But it was just perfect, beautiful walks, birds and scenery. Some of the guys went out fishing and caught loads of blue cod, which we BBQ and was delcious.
Next on the list was a trip from Invercargill around to Dunedin. This was on good friday, the laws are slightly different over here on any religious holiday you can not purchase alcohol in a shops. All the pubs, clubs and restaurants close early and you can only drink if you eat somewhere or you are residing there. A bit different to England whre you just extend the opening hours!
On the way to Dunedin we stopped to see a huge sealion, on a beach that I imagine would resemble northern Scotland. We then stopped at Propoise Bay which had wild hector dolphins swimming in. Our driver explained that you are not aloud to swim with them but if you were swimming and they came over to you then that was allowed. So we stripped of to our undies and jumped in and the dolphins were a metre away from us. Before I got in the water I was wearing a fleece and wooly hat and I was still cold - so imagine how cold the water was. Later that day we stopped at Nugget Point and got the chance to see yellow eyed penguins which are really rare. But the best part was they were jsut coming in form a day at sea to nest. We arrived in Dunedin late and everything was closed as good friday, we had a wonder round the town and it was beautiful but somewhere I wish I had longer.
Saturday we dashed back to Queenstown to watch the rugby. Our driver had tickets for the rugby so we all went on our tour bus to watch the Highlanders Vs the Chiefs in the Super 15s. We had to support the Chiefs in honor of our driver but boy were we outnumbered. The Chiefs coming from the North Island and Highlanders from Dunedin. But the Chiefs won 38 - 34 and it was a great day. Loads of tries and excellent views.
The evening continued with a famous Fergburger and then face painting party...another late night!