Walking in a painting

There are not many places, where I reconsider the possibility of the existence of fairies, draws, hobbits and unicorns. But New Zealand is one of them (the other one is Iceland). Feibai said it with: "It feels like we are walking in a painting".

 Evening view on Mount Cook

Evening view on Mount Cook

We arrived the South Island of New Zealand in Christchurch. The scares of the 2011 earth quake, which flattened most of the city, are still very visible. But the new Christchurch will be modern, quake proof and is aiming to be an inspiration for the world. And I think it really can be, once it is finished. It is an amazing financial and spiritual effort to rebuild the city. Also the quake left scares in people's souls. But they have a great spirt to deal with it. It was touching to hear the comment of a museum staff, saying: "Oh, I wish the city could be ready for Christmas". It will not be. But it is improving every day. And even it is becoming a modern town now, the heritage around. 

We drove from Christchurch to Mount Cook and had one overnight before reaching Queenstown. This is a beautiful place, and we will stay a few days, exploring the mountains around by foot. We already hiked up the Shotover River, looked a bit into the old gold mining projects, like the Oxenbridge Tunnel at Arthurs Point, and learned about the Chinese gold trader Sew Hoy, who was active in this region around 1885. Today took the Fernhill Loop Track through the forests up to about 1000 meters. Again, a beautiful view. This was a warm up, to get a bit higher in the next days.

 Lake Pukaki

Lake Pukaki

 The predominant mushroom in the forests around. A pity, the Brothers Grimm missed New Zealand. 

The predominant mushroom in the forests around. A pity, the Brothers Grimm missed New Zealand.