Pete & Jen's Big Adventure travel blog

Jen being silly

Old Chinese gold-rush building at Arrowtown

Pete being silly

Shelters on the cliff


A Queenstown Winery

Our Bannockburn campsite

The history of Cromwell

Cromwell old town

Reconstructed store fronts

Cromwell Big Fruit!

Black Ridge Winery

Roxburgh Lake

Back in Queenstown I updated the website while Pete got a haircut and sorted out our visas for Australia. We also wandered around the shops before heading off - bought some pressies for people and Pete bought some clothes - very surprising as he is very fussy and hates clothes shopping!

We headed off in the direction of Dunedin stopping at wineries and old gold mining sites on our way - we visited 1 winery just outside Queenstown and went to Arrowtown which was an old mining town and looks like something from a western. They also have memorials there for all the Chinese who came over, lived in appalling conditions and were paid next to nothing.

Next stops were 2 more mining towns, Cromwell & Bannockburn where we found a nice quiet camping spot at the side of the lake - it was pretty much a ghost town, now that there is very little to attract people to the area, although it looks like they're trying to rejuvenate the area - the lake was newly landscaped and new houses were being built but I think it'll be a few years till it resembles anything other than a ghost town!

On Tuesday morning we visited Old Cromwell where they have recreated the town after it was demolished to create a hydroelectric dam - again it looked like something out of a western!

At Alexandra we went to the Black Ridge winery in a beautiful location up on the hills. The owner was very friendly and chatty and told us a lot about the wine and the local area. We bought a bottle of their Cabernet Sauvignon - the southern most Cab. Sav in the world!

At Lawrence we took a very bumpy and windy road through the Waipori gorge (my silly idea to take the scenic route & it was certainly scenic!) - it was very pretty but also very slow going at times and the van got covered in mud.

Finally arrived in Dunedin by 4.30 and had a drink at the Esplanade on the St Clair seafront near Graham & Sandy's (Daplyn family friends). Organised tickets for tours tomorrow and headed to Graham & Sandy's - they were very happy to see us & looked after us very well - it was lovely to be with friends and stay at a 'home' - makes a pleasant change from a hostel or the campervan.

Had dinner with Graham & Sandy and later that evening went for a drink with Johnny & Lucy back at the Esplanade - they are due to go travelling in Europe around Nov for 3 months or so and we were swapping travelling ideas!



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