The End of the Road

We left off in glorious Glenorchy, but we aren’t done with paradise just yet! From there, we headed toward, you guessed it, Paradise. That’s the official name, and it’s not hard to see why. The road is narrow and gravelly, but with views like this, it’s impossible to turn back.

20170308-KRF_3344

Destination Lothlorien! We knew the mystical elven forest wasn’t far ahead, thanks to our trusty LotR guidebook. As soon as the road went deep into a golden forest, we stopped to explore. Turns out this wasn’t the exact filming location, but it’s clearly similar to Galadriel’s stomping grounds.

20170308-KRF_3324

20170308-KRF_3323

I could’ve easily spent hours here, wandering amongst the trees in dappled sunlight.

20170308-KRF_3334

I heard a noise behind me. An elf? Well, no…

20170308-KRF_3328

Oh, Andy!

20170308-KRF_3335

We hopped back into the car and kept driving, through some streams (luckily our rental car had high clearance) and across fields.

20170308-KRF_3343

At last, we made it to the true eaves of Lothlorien, where the Fellowship first entered the forest after losing Gandalf in Moria.

20170308-KRF_3349

This isn’t the best screenshot, but you get the idea:

fellowship_in_lorien_woods1

20170308-KRF_3357

20170308-KRF_3356

I think the Fellowship could’ve saved a lot of time if they just drove part of the way. Sauron would’ve never seen them coming.

With only so much time to spare before our planned dinner out for our last night, we reluctantly turned around. On the way back, we took a detour to visit the Dart River.

20170308-KRF_3363

20170308-KRF_3364

Emptying into Lake Wakatipu, the river is known to Maori as Te Awa Wakatipu. It was named the Dart in English because of its swift current.

We all found countless spots to take photos, because just LOOK at this place!

20170308-KRF_3369

20170308-KRF_3370

The color of the glacial water is unbelievable. The Dart originates in the snowy peaks of the Southern Alps, flowing out of the Dart Glacier and hurrying to Lake Wakatipu. Can’t you just feel the chill looking at it?

20170308-KRF_3377

20170308-KRF_3375

Just a stunning spot all around!

20170308-KRF_3378

Nothing beats a snowy mountain pillow.

On our final night, we enjoyed a great dinner in central Queenstown before turning in. In the morning, Queenstown gave us a warm farewell, coloring the distant peaks with rose gold.

20170309-KRF_3382

Before we bid our amazing bach adieu, I had to get some photos.

20170309-KRF_3390

That’s the view from our bedroom. What I wouldn’t give to wake up to this view every day!

Even the bathroom had a view:

20170309-KRF_3394

Yeah, I won’t be seeing that from my shower anywhere else.

Or this from my breakfast table…

20170309-KRF_3397

So long, house of dreams!

We had Fergburger (because, of course) for a late breakfast/early lunch and walked around town a bit, killing time before our early afternoon flight. The botanic gardens, located on a peninsula sticking out into the lake, are always a wonderful spot to wander.

20170309-KRF_3400

20170309-KRF_3408

I recognized this next boat from my trip to Queenstown over eight years ago, since I took a photo at the time. Here’s the Tic-Toc today:

20170309-KRF_3407

And the Tic-Toc in November 2008:

Tictoc

It’s held up well!

We still had time to spare, so we decided to drive past the airport out to Kelvin Heights to do some exploring and take advantage of the sunshine.

20170309-KRF_3413

20170309-KRF_3416

Paradise for humans and ducks alike.

20170309-KRF_3418

Sadly, we’ve come to the end of the epic Fly family journey. Although we still had a few more days in Wellington, this is it for the photos. I hope you enjoyed the trip as much as we did. (We’re already planning our next one). I hope you’re not sick of Queenstown, since we’ll be back in the next blog for some epic Kelsey & Kelsey adventures! Stay tuned. 🙂

3 thoughts on “The End of the Road

  1. It’s all about the water in this blog post. Well, maybe some forest, too. Great shots, Kelsey. I’m going to dream of Legolas tonight. Don’t tell Dad.

    Like

  2. I’m right here! It was a glorious end to our trip and so much fun chasing the ghosts of LotR. We packed a lot into our three days in Queenstown. It was epic — the town, the water, the wine and the bach. So many great memories.

    Like

  3. Wonderful trip and photos. We did the jet boat trip up the Dart, and kayak back down. Incredible.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this:
search previous next tag category expand menu location phone mail time cart zoom edit close