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Friday, September 30, 2011

Te Anau To Queenstown

<< Dunedin To Te Anau           Queenstown To Omarama >>


Scene Location :
* Lake Te Anau

Te Anau Downs
* Walker Creek
Mirror Lake
Homer Tunnel
Milford Sound
* The Chasm
Kea Viewpoint
* Lake Gunn
* Knobs Flat
* Te Anau
* Lake Manapouri
* The Key
* Mossburn
Five Rivers
* Athol
* Gavston
* Kingston
* Queenstown

Total Distance :
* 447km

* Fuel - NZD60

Setting :

* Day - Snow, snow, snow

Character :

* Driver : Biqque

* Map Reader & Photographer : Shahrul

* Extra : Pakcik El Cheapo, Pakcik ais kacang, Chawana's car, Mamat Kiwi hensem untuk Fatt, Mamat mandi waterfall, Penguin and Fur seals

~Page Four~
Te Anau To Queenstown : When We See What We Want To See

“Ayang, wake up…” Hubby woke me up from the couch. Bahana tak dapat upgrade cabin semalam. Nasib baik takde orang.

Looking out from the lounge glass wall, the weather condition was nice and chill. From afar, I saw Lake Te Anau was so gorgeously bluish, surrounded by stunning and handsome snow-capped mountain.
Again, we didn’t fresh up (tapi maintain wangi) and quickly prepared the breakfast. I made scrambled eggs and toasted bread, enough to sustain until lunch time. We then drove out from the holiday park and stopped at one side of the lake.

Lake Te Anau
“Ya Allahhhhhhh! Lawa gileeeeeeeee!” We shouted happily once we saw the whole part of the lake. Couple of cute ducks was swimming by few small boats. I started to jump around and asked hubby to snap funny pictures of me. We also set a timer to capture our couple picture, for the sake of our ritual “hall of frame”.
We then stopped at Te Anau town to have our breakfast, inside the car. Once finished, I started the engine and drove towards the outskirt.

“What the…is that…?!” A policeman waved his hand to stop us by the road side.

(Turunkan tingkap.)

(Muka terpinga-pinga.)

“Hi…You were driving at 60kmph at the range of 200meters, passing by the school area…” He bended down and explained, showing me the meter reader device, simultaneously.

“Owh really…? I’m so sorry…I didn’t notice that there was a school area…(dalam hati, like WHERE??? Aku baru lepas makan scramble egg kowt!)”

(Muka kesian.)

“Well…the speed limit should be 50kmph…usually, we can tolerate if the speed won’t exceed that much…you know…but today is Monday, so…” sambil angkat bahu dan kening. LA, HARI NI SENIN KEEEEE!

(Redha…tapi cam rasa best gile sampai tersengih-sengih sebab kena saman kat negara orang. Like, YES! Aku rasa ikhlas je nak bayo kat kerajaan dia sebab jalan raya dia cantik. Tak rugi duit aku.)

“Are you a tourist?” (Eh aku Nampak cam local ke? Dah la kat sume negara lain aku di cop sebagai local, takkan NZ pun kot…)


“I’m sorry to ruin your trip…but it’s only NZD30…” Harga saman tu bleh naik cruise untuk dua orang tu bang…but the best part, SIAP MINTAK MAAP TU WEH! KAT MESIA ADA???

I handed out my driving license and waited for him to prepare the ticket. I saw him writing in the occupation field as tourist. Owh…mesti memula dia ingat aku orang Maori kan? Hahaha!

We smiled to them and drove away. The signboard stated to allow 2 hours to reach Milford Sound, provided the road status, is open. We prayed for a smooth journey, hoping that there is no avalanche. Or else, I would have cry in the middle of the road, do the Haka dance, to stop the avalachiao! (Bak kata Fatt.)

God loves us that He permits the road to be opened. Tall trees alongside the road, made the scene looked dim and gloomy. Once in a while, we could see the tip of the snow-capped mountain, from afar.

Te Anau Downs
We stopped for a minute at the Te Anau Downs, that known as the Milford track departure point. There was Lake Mistletoe nearby. At this moment of time, we knew that we were approaching the legendary Homer Tunnel, in any time.

Walker Creek
Beforehand, we passed by the Fiordland National Park and stopped at Walker Creek, to experience an unusual view, where the grass was in russet color. Ala cam rumput kering yang nak mati tu la, tapi tak mati-mati. But the combination of snow-capped mountain, rumput kering, dengan sungai kecik, SANGAT LA CUN!
I SWEAR, at this point of time, kitorang dah jakun gile! Terlompat sana! Terlompat sini! Biasa la, kalo tak chill, tak fun la trip aku tu. Then guna timer amik gambar. Hahaha! Sampaikan dua mamat mat saleh ni yang dok convoy dengan kitorang pun benti skali! Ha bukan Asian jer yang melebih-lebih, omputih pun!

Mirror Lake
Few kilometers from here, we saw cars stopping by the road side. “It’s Mirror Lake!” SUMPAH CANTIK! MEMANG MACAM CERMIN LA! Provided itik-itik kat situ tak kocakkan air yang tenang itu ye adik-adik…pfftt!
While walking back to the car, one uncle looked at us and said “Orang mana?” La, cina ke pakcik ni. Tapi cakap cam melayu.


“Brapa u dapat kereta ni?” He drove a sedan car with El Cheapo name stated on it. And turned out that our car was CHEAPO than his! Hahaha! Ala pakcik ni, kena tipu ar…ko kaya bleh la...

Before we left the lake, the two mat saleh that earlier convoyed with us, just reached there. We smiled and drove away. The signboard showed Piopiotahi, a.k.a Milford Sound was another 56km away. To kill the boredom, in the car, we repeatedly said Piopiotahi, and laughed on it.


We started to see SNOW, ALL OVER THE PLACES!

“Drive! Drive! You can’t stop along the Milford road! You are not permitted to do so!”

“But…but…there’s a space to stop la ayang!”

“NO YOU CAN’T!” A husband was trying to calm down his lunatic wife.

The road was zig-zag with the speed limit at 50-65kmph. Sometimes, at 30kmph. I still can’t let go the snow by the road side. Thank god it wasn’t ON the road itself. Looking at the right hand side, the mountains were partially covered with snow. Even terrifying, when we saw some parts were starting to fall down…THAT’S ONE SMALL AVALANCHE! Tu pun dah SCARY OK!

Hubby quickly asked me to keep driving and stopped looking at the mountain. BUT I CAN’T! I JUST LOVE SNOW! Sebab tu la bini ko ni sanggup masuk Snow House kat Genting bai! Kat "Amareka" dengan "Kolea" dulu takde salji!
“TU ADA ORANG BENTI!” Yup, right before we reached the tunnel, there was a pit stop, specifically for tourist to experience the panaroma. We quickly hopped out and…

…two green birds larger than my palm, came towards us…

…and one flew onto the left side mirror!
“HOI! DIA NAK BUAT APA TU? DIA NAK MASUK KE???” I quickly got in the car and tutup tingkap! The bird was aiming for the bbq chips! Kesian dia…lapar gile!

Hubby told me that we can’t feed them, for Kea, are endangered species. Kang tak pasal-pasal mati makan chips. TAPIIIIIIIII…lagi cepat mati if dia dok GIGIT GETAH TINGKAP KETA AKUUUUUUU!!!

We didn’t dare to “shooh” it away. Ko gigit la apa ko nak, comel...tapi jangan la gigit laki aku! Kahkahkah! (It tried to bite his jeans! Drama tul!)
“Now, let’s play with snow!” Aku rasa berjuta gambar kot kat sini je. Siap full memory card dengan video main salji. Hahaha! BEST GILE OK! And who knows, the car that stopped before us, were M’sian Chinese! Siap salam, patu buat lawak nak buat ais kacang la, ape la. Hahaha! “Kat M’sia tak jumpa hor…sini ada jumpa hor…”

Homer Tunnel
We went back to the car and drove towards the Homer Tunnel. The excitement level at this moment was already at the maximum human parameter. Everything was white and bright. Hubby started to record a video, right after we entered the tunnel.

“WHERE’S MY GLASSES? WHERE’S MY GLASSES?” I was shouted like a blind asshole, asking for glasses, thought that I can see better when I wear it. AND I DIDN’T NOTICE THAT I WAS ON MY ESPIRIT SHADE!


I took off the shade and put on my glasses…and STILL freaked out! “I STILL CAN’T SEE A THING!”


But then my eyes slowly adapt with the suasana…rupanya dek kerana salji yang putih tu, anak mata aku jadi kecik! So nak adjust kasi besar dalam tunnel yang gelap tu, agak lembap la…dah la aku ni rabun jauh…adoyaiiii…DRAMA QUEEN!
Masa ni, video tah ke mana, gambar tah ke mana. Tapi ada bukti dalam video tu yang aku freaked out bagai nak rak! Bikin malu saja! Tengah syok dok berkata-kata, tetiba jerit! Hahaha! (Nanti bebila aku upload...)

Milford Sound
We finally reached the terminal and parked our car at the nearest lot. While waiting for the cruise, we walked around and took photos from the other side of the dock. We met again, the uncle with El Cheapo car just now and he told us that he won’t go for the cruise since there is nothing to see. HUH??? KO DAH DRIVE SEJAUH NI, KO TANAK NAIK CRUISE? KO GILE KE HAPE PAKCIK? KO TENGOK LA SANA TU! CANTIK TU! HAHAHA! "Ayang, sukati dia la...dia yang rugi...jom..." sambil berlalu pergi.
Since we bought an Encounter Nature from Southern Discoveries for 11.00am cruise, we had so much time to linger around and read the history of this place. Meanwhile, we once heard a guy was asking for a ticket at the counter, and the price was NZD75 for a walk-in visitor. Gile kambeng mahal kan? (The original price was NZD65 and we got each other as a birthday gift for NZD15 from Bookme. Hehe…)
Right before we departed, we again overheard that another guy wanted his money back, complaining that the cruise didn’t provide translation in Spanish and no lunch was served. Hey moron, it’s already stated that they will only converse in English and there is no lunch provided. Kopi dengan teh ada la. Tu saje la tu nak try best kot-kot dapat balik duit dia…hahaha! We also met the same Argentinians that we met at Te Anau siap kenyit-kenyit mata lagi. Ye la, banyak kali gak la pegi mana-mana negara, dalam sehari dua mesti jumpa balik orang yang sama...

The reason why we chose this cruise was due to the size of the boat. The smaller the boat, the closer it will go the mountain wall. (I will tell you guys, the best part of this cruise nanti k?) Ha, Bdk2, yang merah ni kira kecik, yang biru tu kira beso.
The moment the boat started to head off, we were served with one beautiful medium-size waterfall. The thrill continued once the boat went further deeper, steered in between the mountains. More and more waterfalls were seen from both sides of the mountains! And they were super cantik aku tatau apa lagi nak cakap lah! Rasa cam nak tamper-tampar je muka sebab tak caya! (Gambar banyak sampai tatau nak pilih yang mana, layan je la yg ada ni k.)
Throughout the cruising, we could hear the guide enlightened series of complete fact and history. A mountain was named after the founder, who thought that he could find gold there, but he failed to find any. Sian. Terus tanak balik.

“Mana satu la tour guide dia ni…” I wondered. Until I saw one blonde guy, in black t-shirt holding a walkie-talkie.

“Hmmm...bleh tahan hensem!” (Dalam hati, kena amik gambar ni, tunjuk kat Fatt!)
(Ha, amacam? Rambut agak wavy tu, tapi dia ikat. Ada satu lagi gambar curi, tapi cam agak gegar sebab takut, tetiba dia toleh...kahkahkah! Nanti ko kasi rating dengan abang jerman k?)

“Tengok bot tu, gile dekat! Jaga…boat ni kang pun nak gi dekat waterfall tu. Confirm basah ni!” Hubby warned me.
Indeed, the captain PURPOSEDLY steered the boat as close as he can, to let everyone on the boat experienced the drizzle! Punya la sejuk! The tour guide even challenge whoever bold enough to get wet and a guy in green jacket offered himself. AND HE DID HAKA MOVE AS WELL! HAHAHA! Sporting gile!
Since there were TOO many waterfalls there, we did experience more sprinkles after that. And hubby grabbed his chance from the upper deck, and I need to sacrify my S5 to snap pictures and record videos, instead of his 550D. (Rindu dia kat 50D dia...lakhanat punya penyamun!) Nasib baik la baju dia waterproof.
An hour has passed, we have reached the sea. This was where the boat turned back to complete one big round. Approaching the other side of the view, there were…

“Penguins!” Everyone awed.

“Mana??? Mana???” Si rabun ni kembali freaked out.

I used my camera to zoom in and finally saw A PENGUIN! Since it was too small to capture, I had to record it on video! Comel gile terkatik-katik lompat! Puas hati aku dapat tengok real life penguin selain zoo!
“Seal mana? You know what? If I screamed fur seal now, I bet everyone will turn their head to me. Hahaha!” Konon nak tipu la. Sekali memang takde pun.

An hour and half has passed. SAPE KATA TAKDE SEAL??? Everyone was screaming when they saw more than 10 fur seals lepak on the boulder, including foreigners who I pretty believed, have seen it before, in their own country. Comel tahap gaban sampai aku rasa macam nak tepuk-tepuk je badan dia sampai pecah!Rasa macam nak kunyah macam chewing gum pun ada. Rasa cam nak hempuk-hempuk kepala kat batu tu pun ada.The rest of the journey back to the dock was normal and less extraordinary. We saw more visitors waiting for the big boats, assuming Chawana was among them. True enough, we saw their car, parked right behind ours. Hahaha! As usual, happy to see them (though it was only their car), we left a love note on the windscreen!
The Chasm - Kea Viewpoint - Lake Gunn - Knobs Flat - Te Anau - Lake Manapouri

We then drove back passed by the Milford road and stopped at few places that we missed out earlier, like The Chasm, Robert Alister memorial stone who killed in avalanche in 1983, Kea viewpoint, Lake Gunn, Knobs Flat, back to Te Anau, to see the Lake Manapouri.
The Key - Mossburn - Five Rivers - Athol - Gavston - Kingston - Queenstown
The flashback of the dark scene at The Key and Mossburn came into the picture, before we passed the Five Rivers, Athol, Gavston, Kingston, where we finally reached Queenstown. Again, we had to settle with powered site since cabin era was no longer valid in this area. And to choose a studio will cost us a bomb! Plus, the Queenstown Lake View Holiday Park has very strict policy, where the kitchen and the tv lounge are closed by 11.00pm.So, no sneaked in tonight. Ko tido la dalam keta sampai kejung!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Dunedin To Te Anau

<< Ashburton To Dunedin           Te Anau To Queenstown >>


Scene Location :
* Dunedin
* Otago Penisula
* Mosgiel

* Waihola

* Milburn

* Milton

* Balclutha i-Site

* Kaka Point
* Nugget Point
* Clinton
* Gore
* Mandiville
* Riversdale
* Balfour
* Lumsden
* Mossburn
* The Key
* Te Anau

Total Distance :
* 400km

* Fuel - NZD50

Setting :
* Day - Super cold
and tricky
* Night - Super dark and scary

Character :

* Driver : Biqque

* Map Reader & Photographer : Shahrul

* Extra : Chawana, Kucing gemuk, Tukang halau kat stadium, Argentinians peramah yang benci kat Maradona

~Page Three~
Dunedin To Te Anau : When There's A Will, There's A Way
We woke up quite late due to exhaustion that we suffered, the night before. It’s been two days we didn’t pep up (a.k.a tak mandi la). “Ahh…lantak la, tak busuk pun…” Though this small red cute cabin that we upgraded last night wasn’t attached with any individual toilet, it did furnish with heater, queen-sized bed, side table, and cutleries.
While Chawana prepared their own breakfast, hubby and I just had a couple of toasted bread with jam. (Sedap betul tengok Chawana makan maggie!) Luckily, there were coffee and tea in the kitchen.

After we packed up, we took few crazy shots around the lodge. While waiting for Chawana to make a last minute booking for Mitre Peak Cruise, I saw one big furry cat. “Gile gemuk!”
We then drove to the city and headed to the Baldwin Street, the world’s steepest street! Yup, you read it right! Nak tau how steep is the road, jap! Right after we parked our car at the beginning of the road, two workers came and told us that they gonna close the road for maintenance. “Alaaaaaaa…kaco la…”
So both drivers, Chawan (Na’s hubby) and I, got into the cars. Chawan at first reversed his car, but then I hinted him not to do so.
(Pointing my finger towards the street, twice.)

(Chawan smiled.)

(I nodded, twice.)

He then drove towards the street while I followed closely.

Korang nak tau masa ni Na dengan laki aku kat mana? Terpinga-pinga kat bawah jalan. Hahaha! Yeah, we always swap couple sebab aku ngan Chawan memang lain, dari Na ngan laki aku. Ko sebut nama tempat juta kali kat kitorang, juta kali jugak la kitorang akan tanya balik. Kahkahkah!

Along the steepest street, I saw all houses at both sides were built almost 45degrees from the road. Eh, the road was constructed 45degrees from the house sebenarnya. Ha camtu la. We then made a u-turn and I drove down first, followed by Chawan. I managed to snap few pictures from inside of the ar but they weren’t good enough to portray the verticality. Dang!

With a smirk on my face, I parked the car on the next street, near the i-Site. “You amik tak gambar I drive kat atas tu tadi???” I eagerly asked my hubby, hopping that he got at least a picture to prove it. “Tak…I tak pasan…tengok-tengok you dah kat atas…”

“ARGHHHHHH!!!!” I walked into the i-site and bought two fridge magnets, and a certificate of achievement, that I HAVE DROVE ON BALDWIN STREET AND SURVIVED!
AND GUESS WHAT…he FORCED the girl to put his name onto the cert as well…pfftt!

We then off to the Cadbury Chocolate Factory, to get those tasty chocolate bars that Bdk2 has lured in his blog (tak tahan daulat, ko!). We understand that no photos while touring the factory, so we decided to opt only for the shop.Entering the lobby had already made our eyes popped out. “Banyak nyer coklatttttttttt!” I asked the guy at the counter, whether we are allowed to get into the shop, without taking any tour and he said “Well…you can ask me nicely…” sambil angkat-angkat kening. HOI! LAKI AKU KAT BLAKANG NI! HAHAHA!

He permitted us to shop around (gile ko tak kasi orang beli) and I asked for Chawana’s suggestion and recommendation on what should and should not I get, since she knows better.

Trust me…I thought I can hold myself from buying more than a bar. Guess what?! We bought more than 10 bars! (Whittakers? Nanti duluuuuuuu :D)

From Cadbury Choco Factory, we droved to the nearby area and parked at the roadside, before we took a walk to the Railway Station. The building was so amazing!
We then off to the town area and secara tak sedar, Chawana dah hilang! OMG! Camne nih?! Dah la takde phone! Assuming that they will go to the same i-Site that we have discussed earlier, we looked for a parking.

Who knows that the Dunedinians were having a rugby party right at the center heart of Octagon!!! We had to walk about 200 meters away before I finally saw Na came out from a souvenir shop! The moment I saw her, terus I jerit “Naaaaaaaaaa!” and ran towards her macam cite Tamil tu. Hahaha!
Beforehand, I managed to peep into the Haka Peep Show tube tower and snapped few pictures with Robbie Burns si “pakcik batu”, and the First Church.
“So? Stadium?”


Visiting the rugby stadium during the World Cup was one of the “must do” task that we had set. Chawana led the way since they have subscribed for GPS. It was quite far from the town…


…takde orang…takde bendera…

…near the scrap yard? Ye ke ni?

“HAHAHAHA! MANA TAUUUU...DAH GPS NI TUNJUK SINI...” Kena pulak stadium baru tu, betul-betul baru buat utk World Cup 2011 ni haaaa!

Anyhow, we managed to return back to town and locate the new stadium.

“Ni baru betullll…tapi tak leh masuk la plak!” We were chased out from the authorized area by two officers, and headed to the other side of the stadium. We stopped by the roadside and went out from the cars. Na and I quickly posed and did the Haka dance before we got chased out again. Hahaha! Cam haram!
Otago Peninsula
From the city, we headed to the Otago Peninsula to look for Lanarch Castle and Chawana again, tetiba hilang! Again, assuming they will find the way, we continued driving alongside the cliff and stopped at one place. Out of nowhere, there was a soldier statue on top of the hillview. Bleh?We parked the car by the roadside and walked up. Tak sampai separuh jalan, dah mengah! The trail was improper, covered only with pebbles and soil. From above, we once in a while looked down below, looking for Chawana’s car.Jodoh itu di tangan tuhan.

Bleh plak ternampak keta merah diorang! Hahaha! Hubby and I were jumping up and down from the hill top, hoping that Chawana could see us in between the bush. It was paid off, when they stopped their car behind ours, and we continued our journey to the castle.

Mana nak tau Lanarch Castle tu tak nampak dari jauh! Kena bayo plak tu! “Dah, dah…u-turn jer…balik, balik.” To the Nugget Point, we shall go, Hobbits!

Mosgiel - Waihola - Milburn - Milton - Balclutha i-Site
Cantiknyer sepanjang perjalanan, masyaAllah…Allah saje yang tau. The beach was super close to the road, aku takut tsunami melanda jer. We drove over Mosgiel, Waihola, Milburn, Milton, Balclutha, and stopped for a while at the i-Site, then stopped again at Kaka Point to take some shots. Sejuk masa ni jangan tanya, mencengkam kalebu!
Kaka Point - Nugget Point - BalcluthaNugget Point was actually a de-tour that we chose to do since not many people willing to drive that far. We then drove for another 10km before we got stunned by the “off road”.

SUMPAH AKU CAKAP, from Balclutha to Nugget Point, 26KM KO RASA MACAM 1000KM! The road was dusty and bumpy! And no one else except for our cars! Masa ni dah lewat petang. Menakutkan tak? Tu la, nak sangat gi tempat yang orang lain tak pegi :D


We had to walk another 1km from the parking, through the pathway, towards the light house, where the cliff was 100 meters high! We even joked around and took funny pose before we climbed the steps.
The rocks, the cliffs, the sea, a.k.a the Catlins coastlines, were…eM to the A to the R, VELOUS! We were hopping to see some albatross or seal or maybe penguin, but it was too early for that.Since both of us gonna take a separate direction, we walked back to the car. We drove back to Balclutha and messed with the "off road" again. Another 26km dusty road! Chawana then head to Invercargill, while us, head to Te Anau. “Till we meet again…at Milford Sound.”

Clinton - Gore
We once, on the way out, stopped to take a picture with a sheep, before we stopped at the Presidential Highway, where Clinton and Gore took place. Gore was quite a lively big town, so we stopped at Countdown to get some refreshment and groceries to be cooked, once we reached Te Anau Lake View Holiday Park.

Mandiville - Riversdale - Balfour - Lumsden - Mossburn
The journey from Gore to Te Anau REALLY KILLED US! IT WAS SUPER DARK, SOUNDLESS, AND COLD! We had the longest period of driving, EVER, especially from Mandiville, Riversdale (a dead town that have probably one motel, one public toilet, and three stores), Balfour, before we reached Lumsden.

The Key - Te Anau
We passed by Mossburn and The Key (ya Allah…macam dalam cite seram tu yang gelap gile siap lalang tinggi-tinggi tu, aku risau je zombie kuar dari hutan ni tahan keta aku) before we FINALLY reached Te Anau.

We failed to upgrade the powered site to cabin sebab dah lewat. So, we settled down in the car, and woke up at 4.00AM sebab tak tahan sejuk sampai kebas kaki, and sneaked into the lounge area, and slept on the couch. Sempat jugak la masak maggie, sembang ngan The Pumas diehard fan (a group of Argentinians who came to support their national rugby team) yang tetiba offer nak share arak dengan daging panggang, sambil layan rugby kat TV. Thanks...but no thanks...

P/S: Read my travel companion's blog on the same entry, here.

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