Today I drove from Fox Glacier to Wanaka and then Queenstown – a long day. The low clouds and rain continued blocking views of the mountain range – as if to tease, the skies cleared briefly a few times but soon clouded up again.
Only spent a few hours in Wanaka. It was raining hard and dreary so I decided to continue to Queenstown. Wanaka is at the southern end of Lake Wanaka and considered the gateway to Mount Aspiring National Park. It’s a popular resort town and there are many summer and winter outdoor activities to enjoy there. Between flourishing tourism and an increasing number of retirees, Wanaka’s population increased 50% in the past 10 years.
The Crown Mountain Range lies to the south of Wanaka and Queenstown and is 75 miles to the north. Lake Hawea is a nearby lake, in a parallel glacial valley. All of the lakes are gorgeous! Mountains surrounding Wanaka are popular with climbers, including Roys Peak, Mount Iron, Mount Grand, and the Pisa Range. Of course all have stunning views of the surrounding area.
Despite the rain and clouds it was an incredibly beautiful drive. On to Te Anau and Milford Sound tomorrow – hoping the weather is clearer.