Day 3: Dunedin – Wanaka; Sunny Clear; 26ºC max, 16ºC min.
Everyone woke up early, packed breakfast on the go, and loaded up our luggage to be on the move towards Lake Wanaka. While waiting, I spent time playing with E in the landscaped garden of Mercure Dunedin Leisure Lodge. We found beautiful summer foliage and stopped to smell them.
It was a long drive from Dunedin to Wanaka, hence, we stopped over at Roxburgh for a toilet break, and let E get off the car, shake some fidgety worms out of her body, and mingle with her cousins again.
She came back into our car after playing and knocked out shortly after.
J brought us to see the hospital in Alexandra where he worked at before. He even showed us the little house he stayed in during his stint there.
Then we went in search of the Clyde Bridge that looms over the Clutha River, where he once swam in. The turquoise waters reminded me of Lake Louise and Peyto Lake in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada.
We took some family shots under one of the base supports, made of stone layers, before moving on to the Clyde Dam.
As we made our way towards the Clyde Dam, we came upon a scenic lookout point by the river bank where many camper vans pulled over.
We too, stopped to capture the beauty of the scenery, and rested by the riverbank.
Isabella and Daniella were enticed by the waters, which lured them to the rocky edge where they happily played upon, cooling themselves from the summer heat by touching the water.
Everyone got out of our cars to enjoy the fresh crisp air and the cool breeze. It was pure bliss merely sitting on the slightly scorched turf of grass, watching the gentle rippling of the waters as the winds kissed its surface.
I wished time could stop for a while as we enjoyed the beautiful waterscape with the neighbouring hills as its backdrop, creating a scenic haven for travellers like us, a place perfect for a lunch picnic.
We moved on towards Cromwell, the town that is home to orchards and vineyards. Upon entry into Cromwell, we were greeted by the giant fruit sculpture which comprises of an oversized apple, pear, nectarine and apricot!
We stopped over for a toilet break and some stretching before moving on to our final destination for the day – Lake Wanaka.
Along the way, we came by an orchard selling its produce by the road side. After examining what it had to offer, we concluded that the price was way overpriced…
… so we soldiered on towards the “prize”, eager to reach our destination for a much needed proper rest from the long drive from Dunedin.
Since our youngest member gave us 2 thumbs up for the road trip so far, we gave ourselves a pat on the back for having driven about 280 km for approximately 4 hrs (including the stopovers), when we finally reached Wanaka.
We stayed at Wanaka Luxury Apartments where we were neighbours to each other with JMIDM. The duplex house offers stylish furnishings complete with a fully equipped modern kitchen, bedroom suites with their respective balconies, and a shared garden, which was perfect for our kiddos who popped in and out between our houses.
We quickly settled our luggage and went out for a stroll along the picturesque Lake Wanaka, and walked towards the nearby New World to grab groceries. On the way, we were so uplifted that we clapped our feet in mid-air, did some cartwheels and front walkovers too! After we came home, almost all of us (except the drivers Josh and J, and Mum) soaked in the jacuzzi heated spa, and swam in the cold pool. We had so much fun, especially Bella and Daniella, who were reluctant to go back home.
While we were at the pool, Mum roasted lamb that was seasoned with rosemary and mint for our dinner! It costs NZ$22.88 and it fed all 10 of us, with leftovers for Shen and Davis too, who came over later to crash with us.
What a lovely day, coupled with a luxurious accommodation to relax in, before we journey on again to our next destination come morning!
“Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise: be thankful unto Him, and bless His name. For the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting; and His truth endureth to all generations.” (Psalms 100:4-5 KJV)