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Beautiful snow capped mountains and scenery
Expensive, especially the helicopter rides
In a nutshell
This place is a must visit when you are at the South Island
I-Believe-I-Can-Fly Says: Since there is no much option for eating, we had our lunch in the Hermitage coffee shop. It serves a kind of fast food. Nothing special with the food, just like what we had in other coffee shops. But what I keep in mind is the view from the restaurant. We sat outside on its...
One of the thing you must do on a clear day and you have money to spend is to take a helicopter ride to experience breathtaking views of the mountains, valleys, glaciers, rivers, lakes etc. The helicopter can also land on a glacier if the weather permits so that you will have a chance to experience standing on a glacier. A helicopter trip of about 45 minutes will cost about US$100 at least.
Written Mar 8, 2005
The Maori legend of Mount Cook is the story of Aoraki and his three brothers. They were the sons of Rakinui (the Sky Father) and were on a voyage around Papatuanuku (the Earth Mother) when disaster struck and they became stranded upon a reef. The voyagers climbed on to the top side of the canoe and after a time the south wind froze them and turned them into stone. Their canoe became the South Island (Te Waka o Aoraki is the oldest name for the South Isand) and Aoraki who stood tallest of the brothers is now seen as the majestic Aoraki/Mount Cook with the Southern Alps as his brothers and other members of this crew.
Written May 15, 2003
Around the Mountains the weather changes very fast. We left on a fine, sunny day to visit Mt. Cook, by the time we reached Lake Pukaki, the wind was high, and rain squalls were crossing the lake. We couldn't even see Mt. Cook for cloud and rain, and it was too dangerous to drive up there in a Campervan in the bad weather, so I never got to visit.
We stopped at the tourist information centre by the lake, and the lady told us a camper van had been blown over by the strong winds on Mt. Cook!
The warning is, don't go in bad weather and use your common sense!
Written Jan 21, 2010