Shouldn't Queenstown be situated in Queensland?

Queenstown, New Zealand's capital of extreme sports, manages to disguise as a nice, cozy and peaceful small town at the same time.

Cozy streets with a good view, Queenstown, New Zealand

Cozy streets with a good view, Queenstown, New Zealand

 

A lake,  READ MORE »

Milford Sound — as far opposite from sand desert as possible

Rain in large quantities is not useful. Even in agriculture. That's a fact.
Today we found out that it does good to Milford Sound, one of the wettest places in the world, which gets to live under a nearly constant shower, accumulating to a staggering 6,8 meters of rainfall per year.

 

Cruise ship leaving to fjords, Milford Sound, New Zealand: Adjusted shadows and highlights

Cruise ship leaving to fjords, Milford Sound, New Zealand

The positive thing is that it  READ MORE »

Mirror this, State Departments of Tourism

A glorious view, mountains, forest, crystal clear waters of the lake and ice fresh air.

Hordes of international tourists, old and young.

This needs a very serious approach to all the infrastructure, right?

 Mountainous landscape around Mirror Lakes, Milford Sound, New Zealand
Mountainous landscape around Mirror Lakes, Milford Sound, New Zealand

 

Maybe in Australia.

Here, in New Zealand, they (probably quite an official governmental institution called the Department of Conservation) managed to drop a small creative  READ MORE »

Beautiful, but remote

Printing house, White and brown, Invercargill, New Zealand

Printing house, White and brown, Invercargill, New Zealand

 

A group of five American millionaires arrived to Invercargill, the centre of the Southlands region today, to play a round or two of  READ MORE »

Steep steps

It appears that Dunedin, the second biggest city in New Zealand's South island, apart from huge population of students, is also home to the world's steepest street, Baldwin st. On average, at each 3.41 meters of horizontal travel it gains 1 meter of height. The steepest section is 1 : 2.86.

 

Running down the steepest street in the world, Dunedin, New Zealand

Running down the steepest street in the world, Dunedin, New Zealand

The street hosts  READ MORE »

Ratio of sheep to other inhabitants

There are around 4 million inhabitants in New Zealand, and a lot of sheep. Approximately, 40 million.

 

Sheep auction, Timaru, New Zealand

Sheep auction, Timaru, New Zealand

 

In an auction, one sells between 35 and  READ MORE »

Photoshop isn't needed in New Zealand

A house before the storm, Hampden, New Zealand

A house before the storm, Hampden, New Zealand

 

Places not visited before are often imagined and expected to be quite different from what they are in reality.
When coming to New Zealand, we expected beautiful landscapes.

Believe me, this country  READ MORE »

British Zealandish

Books and other travellers say that Christchurch is the most English city in New Zealand. I'll justify that it looks rather "aristocratic British" indeed.

 

Punting on Avon river, Christchurch, New Zealand

Punting on Avon river, Christchurch, New Zealand

 

The second thing that they swear about, is  READ MORE »

Hobbits spotted in Christchurch?

I can not help myself in drawing a parallel between New Zealand and Middle Earth. You know, a place from "The Lord of the Rings".

Actually, the movie made such an impact, that it became one of the main selling points of the country. Beautiful, clean environment, gorgeous landscapes. Fantasy creatures inhabiting the land.

Wouldn't you say that it's hobbits that are living in the hills, just above the "normal part" of Christchurch city?

 

City street with small houses on hills in the backdrop, Christchurch, New Zealand

City street with small houses on hills in the backdrop, Christchurch, New Zealand  READ MORE »

Party no fun without the pills?

Party pills officially sold in specialized shops of Christchurch.
The first reaction - negative. Will try to find out more. Using strictly non-empirical means of research, naturally.

 

Party pills officially sold in specialized shops, Christchurch, New Zealand

Party pills officially sold in specialized shops, Christchurch, New Zealand  READ MORE »

Are we being followed?

After close examination (not that I do it often) of a heater in our hostel room, I found out that there are two plaques on it with a warning text, saying "Do not cover" in 11 languages.

 

 

Room heater in New Excelsior hostel, Christchurch, New Zealand

 

Room heater in New Excelsior hostel, Christchurch, New Zealand

The interesting thing,  READ MORE »

The trinity of hospitality

11.30 P.M.
We have just arrived to New Zealand, and stand opposite the passport control booth in Christchurch airport.

 

Visitors permit - stamp in a passport, Christchurch, New Zealand

Visitors permit - stamp in a passport, Christchurch, New Zealand

The first cultural trinity learnt there:  READ MORE »

Australia - the big brother

I've said mostly positive words about Australia so far. Well, maybe except the level of IT and internet development.
Still, we need to be objective, right? Therefore, a few words of criticism about how Australia treats its own citizens.

 

Let's start from Europe.

I come from there, so the comparison comes naturally.
Travelling in Europe is easy - if you're a citizen of an EU country, all you need to travel to the rest of the continent, is an ID card. The passport can stay at home.

Look what the authorities say:
“It is best to have your passport or ID card when travelling in the EU because you may be required to prove your identity.”
 

You may be required, how's that?

What happens in reality, is that you just drive past the border of yet another European country, sometimes even without noticing it. And nobody bothers to check you, except some rare cases.

Nice and easy.

 

In Australia, on the other hand,

even the citizens of Australia are asked to fill out the departure card!

Australian outgoing passenger's card

Australian outgoing passenger's card  READ MORE »

The impact of lunch breaks on quality of life

While discussing your compensation package with a new employer, how much would you be willing to sacrifice for having lunch breaks like this?

Two construction guys relax on Manley beach during a lunch break, Sydney, Australia

Two construction guys relax on Manley beach during a lunch break, Sydney, Australia  READ MORE »

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