New Zealand, Australia · 15 Days · 100 Moments · July 2016

Madison's trip to New Zealand

3 August 2016

Best place to eat was in queenstown called Fergburger and also Patagonia chocolate was very good
Auckland: the Langham Hotel (Joe Biden was there at the same time) Queenstown: Sofitel st Moritz (mom and I had a miscommunication because I said the Sofitel not the Sofitel st Moritz which is cooler but it was confusing so we stayed there) Franz Josef: The Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Christchurch: Hotel Montreal
My favorite place in New Zealand was definitely queenstown and my favorite thing to do was either the 4 wheelers or the Ledge Bungy
places and went to this great cookie place, but it was super cold and I almost froze. Christchurch also is really like a construction zone because in 2011 they had a ginormous earthquake that made everything fall. That is why they have like train box car restaurants and stores. There is a whole lulu lemon store made out of boxcars. We also saw this huge girls netball league where we left from hahahha. For dinner we went to this great Italian place and I got duck which was really good. The next morning we got up at 4 AM and left New Zealand:(((
For our last day in New Zealand we woke up and went to this storage box cafe for coffee (they have a lot of those because earthquakes can't hurt them) then back to the hotel for breakfast. I had a Spanish omelette which was mediocre and kind of bland. Then we went to this place called the Adrenaline Forrest and it was INCREDABLE!!! It was a HUGE ropes course. We only had an hour so me and Annelise started at level 3, and then did 4 and 5. You were always clipped in so you couldn't fall, and there was like nobody there so we could do whatever we wanted. I listened to music through the whole thing. My favorites were the Tarzan swig, a rope swing into a net, the super long flying foxes on level 5, like a zip line, or the red bouncy ball swing called the wrecking ball. My least favorite was a super long tightrope that was impossible to stay on. There were 2 adorable dogs that would follow you when you zip lined. Then we went to the Segway tour. It was awesome and we saw so many cool
The next day we woke up and went to this coffee shop for breakfast. It was really cute. We found out our helicopter hike was cancelled because the weather was apparently bad (it really wasn't) so we just got to hike to the bottom of the glacier. It felt like such a long hike but was really just an hour and a half. I got to hike over to this other part and touch part of the ice which was cool. Then we got back in the car and drove to Christchurch. Once we got there we ate dinner at this weird Asian place and it ended up being the first meal on the trip I didn't really like. It was gross chicken. Then we went back to Hotel Montreal which was sooo cool and went to sleep. We were in a family room so me and Annelise had twin beds in the main part and Christopher slept with mom and dad in the other room
on top. Then we left queenstown to drive to the Franz Josef Glacier Hotel. :( I watched like 2 movies in the car. We stopped at this really cool beach and drove under this waterfall. When we got there it was dinner time, so we went to this like sports bar by it and ate dinner. Then we walked back to the hotel and went to sleep
For our last morning in queenstown, I woke up and ate breakfast, then we went to the station and were picked up by the shotover bus to go on the sunrise shotover jet boat. They gave us rain jackets and neck gators and glasses to wear and me and Annelise and mom and Christopher got in the back row. It was the coldest I have been in my whole life. They go up to 80 mph and the water gets on you and it's freezing. I reached up to touch my goggles and realized I was touching my ear but it was so cold I couldn't feel it. They are crazy on those they literally go right next to the cliff so you can almost touch and and they do these awesome 360 spins in the jet boats. We looked on their famous people wall and Yao Ming had been there only a week before us. Prince William and Kate were also there like 2 years earlier. Then we rented our car, got our bags, and went to Patagonia again. I got hot chocolate last time so this time I got a chocolate Popsicle with white chocolate outside and like Oreo
Tasman sea. There were kayakers who I thought must be psycho because it was so cold. Then we went back in the van then the plane to queenstown. After that we got to go up the Skyline Gondola to do the ledge bungy, but because the Milford thjng had to do the rainy day landing, we were very late and had to do it at night. Trying to jump off was terrifying. I wouldn't have done it but there was a guy behind us who had done Nevis bungy (143 meters!!) and he told me to think of jumping into a pool. I did it!!! I have never done anything more fun in my life. It was so cool!!! then we went and ate at the buffet dinner and were planning to do stargazing but skipped it because the dinner wasn't that good and you couldn't really see the stars. Then we went down the gondola and walked back to the hotel
The next day I woke up and ate breakfast and there was the most beautiful sunrise ever. Then we were picked up by the taxi and taken to the airport to fly to Milford Sound. I got to be copilot!!! There were 2 places because our group was so big and we were on the plane with 2 teachers. I have never taken more pictures in my life than I did on that flight because it was so pretty. We had to fly into a different place called Te Hokita or something like that because it was raining. Then we still had a 2 hour drive to Milford. It was very pretty and I was in the front seat. The driver was VERY into naturey stuff and it was annoying I almost fell asleep but I had to listen because she was right next to me. Then we got there and got onto the boat. I liked it but it was FREEZING cold. Milford is called a Fjord because it was carved by a glacier, and they accidentally called it a sound (something carved by a lake I think). There were lots of waterfalls and we went all the way to the
Fergburger again and go back to our room and watch a movie. We watched Mother's Day and this time, I got the full sized Fergburger and it was soooo good. Mom and dad got pizza from this place called the cow and it was so cute!!! I ate some of the garlic bread which was good. We had also gone to this cute old fashioned candy store where I got licorice. Then we went to sleep.
Then we got in the bus to take us up to Nevis. We rode by the dirt biking place and saw all of the trails from high up which was cool but on the was up we were so terrified of the swing. It's the biggest swing in the Southern Hemisphere, the second biggest in the world only coming behind one in Europe that's only a few feet bigger. It has a 70 meter free fall and then you swing for 300 more meters. Me and Annelise went first and did it together both facing forward which made it less scary. When you are in the free fall you are literally breathless, it's terrifying but awesome. Then you swing for a while which is so much fun! Then dad and Christopher went and mom used her tailbone excuse even though she probably wouldn't have done it anyways hahahah. Then we got our pictures and went back down. There was a guy in the bus who had gone before us and was hilarious. He was from New Zealand but had moved to Dallas and was a firefighter. Then when we got back to queenstown we decided to get
The next day I woke up and went to breakfast and looked incredibly stupid because I had to wear my gross blue jeans since we were going horse riding. It was disgusting hahahha especially with my tennis shoes. I ate breakfast then the taxi picked us up to take us to dart stables to ride the horses. Me and dad were going on the Trilogy Loop, where we pretended to be crazy horse people so that we sounded experienced, while mom and Annelise and Christopher were on the River Wild. We thankfully got to change into their boots but had to wear helmets. My horse was Joey and dads was Merlin. Merlin was old and slower and Joey was very fast and always had to be in the front so it was great hahahah. We saw like the misty mountains and rode by the Dart Riverbed and Rees Riverbed. We saw Annelise mom and Christopher halfway through and then galloped away hahahha. Then we had to go back to queenstown very fast to make it to the Nevis swing. We went to the station to check in while mom got food
Then we went back in the van and back to queenstown. Oh and or guy's name was David and he was the son of the guy who started it. It was started originally when these guys went up to David's dad and asked where to rent dirt bikes. He told them to come back tomorrow and then got a few bikes and they loved it and that started Off Road Adventures. After that, we went to the queenstown ice bar called Minus 5 even though it was actually -8 degrees Celsius. Then, we went back to the hotel and Christopher and I went to the hot tub. There were 2 and they were so cute because they were like little wooden buckets but they were kind of cold which sucked. Then this Australian couple came and we talked to them about the USA and Australia. They were also on our Milford sound tour. Then we showered and went to the hotel restaurant for dinner. They were annoying about us being kids but let us get a table. I got kids grilled chicken and Brussels sprouts which was really good actually.
I loved the 4 wheelers soooooo much. First we put on our like mud proof clothes because it had just rained and was very muddy. We got plastic boots plastic jackets plastic pants and like racecar gloves and racecar helmets. Then we did the practice. I got to have an adult bike because I have a drivers liscense but Annelise and Christopher had to have kids. Mine went up to 270, annelises went to 90, and Christopher only went to 50. His was so slow hahahah. Mom originally had a big bike and was with my dad and this Asian girl named Jenny, but she was moved because she was too scared to go fast so she went with Annelise and Christopher. I loved it. There were these bumps that you went over and I literally got all 4 of my wheels off the ground at one time. The guy thought I was crazy. There was a loop where me and dad went by ourselves and to dad he said that he had to go in front of me or else I would go full throttle. Later on I started getting tired and accidentally ran into a bush haha

31 July 2016

We woke up the next day and went to breakfast at the hotel, which was very good. After that, we went tithe travel agency and spent 2 hours booking everything, because apparently mom didn't book anything, and we barely fit it all in because of the small amount of time and late booking. Then we walked around for a while, and for lunch went to Fergburger- a super good burger place where the line can be like 2 hours!!! I got a kids burger and it was AMAZING!!! So glad I got a kids because adults are as big as your face!!! Then we went to go do our 4 wheelers
The next day I woke up again and ran my 3.2 kilometers. Then I showered and ate breakfast and we checked out of the hotel and drove to the sky tower. It's so tall!!! It is like 61 floors to the viewing platform, and we stood there and watched people bungy jump from the top, then like another 10 floors to the very top. We obviously walked up the stairs. I heard the elevators had glass floors though!!! Then we went to the airport. At the airport I got carrot cake at this cafe. We flew Air New Zealand to Queenstown which was very cold!!! It's such a cute little like ski town. Then we went to our dinner at this little restaurant that is well rated, but I didn't like it much. I got duck and it was not as good as the hotel's duck. The restaurant was called Rata. After that we walked back to the St Moritz and went to sleep.
When our tour guide asked someone to sing, he volunteered and sang the national anthem in the dark. It was chill. We learned so much about glow worms and saw like their nets for their chrysalis'. Then we went on the boat. We couldn't make any noise because apparently the glow worms don't like it. There wasn't even a motor or oars on the boat! She had these ropes above her that she would pull to make it stop go or turn. I tried to take a picture but she yelled at me because you're not allowed to but it wasn't working anyways so it's ok. Then we drove back to Auckland and it was even harder to stay awake. We decided to get room service for dinner, so I got duck then went to sleep
She had lots of cool stories about the movies too. Like apparently Gandolph didn't mean to hit his head on the hobbit hole, but he just played it off!!! Also, to make him look huge, they would put him in front of small hobbit holes and the hobbits in front of big ones that were identical. Because of that, they had like 44 hobbit holes and only used like 14 in filming. Then we went and ate lunch at the pub from the movie called the green dragon hahaha (same name as the store in Aspen). I got ginger beer and this cold pork pie. It was the most disgusting thing I've ever eaten. The pork part wasn't bad but it had this horrid jelly in between that and the bread. They had a cute fire and cat that we played with. I also got itchy wool gloves. Then we drove to try to make it to the glow worm caves before they closed and we made it just in time!!! We went in on the last tour with these weird people who we thought were Mormons or something (their vibes) and one of them was a very good singer.
The next morning, I decided to get up early and go to the fitness center. I did and was sad because it was a depressing windowless room with Asian screens. I went on the treadmill and tried to run 2 miles, but it was so hard because it was in kilometers!!! After that I went and swam with Annelise in the big pool then the hot tub!!! Then I showered in the fitness center and went down to the awesome breakfast!!! They had everything!!!! Even a chocolate fountain with ice cream cones to dip in!!! Then we got in our car and drove to Hobbiton. It was so cool. It's like a huge farm owned by the Alexander brothers. Russell runs the tourism side. They have huge busses that people get on to go to the set, and it was funny because they are really obsessed with Peter Jackson, the director, and how he was such a perfectionist. He imported foreign sheep because he didn't like the New Zealand sheep. Then we walked through the town with our guide, May. She was kind of weird but I loved her accent!!!
about to fall asleep! Then we went to this huge awesome restaurant by the pier and to stay awake, everyone but me and mom got a ton of red bull. For dinner that night I got salmon which was VERY good. Then we drove back to the Langham and finally went to sleep!!!
After that beach we went to eat lunch at this place called piha cafe. They basically only had like pizza and chicken pot pie so I had to get quiche and it was ok. After that we went through Auckland to this little town in the east and randomly went into this antique store to go to the bathroom, then to this little grocery store where I got a kiwi!!! The town was called Matakana. It was very cute!!! Then we went to this really cool white sand beach called Omaha Beach. There were these HUGE flat shells and so I went down the beach for a long time listening to music and looking for them. Annelise saw a cavapoo (this type of dog she is obsessed with getting) and freaked out for a while hahaha. There were also these really cute dogs playing fetch in the bushes on the sand dunes. Then we drove back to Auckland to eat dinner, and the drive was so hard to stay awake. Christopher and Annelise fell asleep a ton and I listened to fast music and would stick my body out the window every time I was

29 July 2016

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21 July 2016

It was by Lion Rock on Tasman Sea. It was awesome!!! It was a black sand beach that had these cool jellyfish that were blue that you could pick up!!!! It also had seaweed taller than me. Then we went and hiked up a tall rock to this cliff and it was so windy that it almost pushed me off!!! It was so horrifying...
convert my seat into a bed. It was soooo cool the whole thing flipped over and turned into a completely flat bed and they had a pillow top thing that made it the most comfy bed ever!!!! Then I woke up and ate breakfast on Christopher's footrest because they buckle so that you can eat breakfast across from people. When we landed, even though when we left LA it was 10 pm on July 19th, when we got to Auckland it was 6 am on July 21st because we crossed the international date line. We stood in line for an hour and a half at customs where they forced us to get our hiking boots washed... Strangest place ever... Then we got our car which is SO weird to drive because it is opposite and it's not a driver car so I got to drive it for a while and it felt SO weird. We got to the Langham Hotel and Christopher and I walked to get coffee from this cute coffee bar place. When we got back we saw Joe Biden leaving because there were about 50 cars and a million police. Then we drove to this cool beach
Leaving Houston was so fun! Sasha and Alex were at the airport picking up their mom so they came and said bye and while they were there, we were taking stuff out of my suitcase because it was 62 pounds... And I forgot to zip it before I lifted it to put on the scale and every piece of clothing fell out Hahahahah. We flew to LAX on United and it was fun. I sat by Annelise and listened to music. Then we got there and chilled at the airport for like 3 hours and then got on Air New Zealand to fly to Auckland. I loved it!!! Even though they made me check my carry on (which basically made it 3 checked bags for me) they had awesome seats, great food in good portions, and a HILARIOUS safety video. It was all of these weirdos singing it. I got yelled at however because I was videoing it. Then we took off and I watched an affair to remember, aloha, and lord of the rings because it was filmed in New Zealand. After I ate chicken for dinner, I got chocolate mousse dessert and then attempted to

20 July 2016