After a wonderful first half of our trip, we thought that we’d experienced the best of what NZ had to offer. Boy, were we wrong. Te Anau offered us such amazing and unforgettable sights and revealed unparalleled pristine beauty.
Named after the lake that it is situated next to, Te Anau is the gateway town to Milford Sound (more of that in a separate post), one of the most famous natural wonders of NZ. Although it is probably best known for its scenic Milford Road, Te Anau itself has so much to offer. You may even consider staying here for a few days! We did, at Lakeside Motel & Apartments.
Honestly, we had no idea about how ridiculously, insanely, unimaginably HUGE the place we rented was until we arrived at our accommodation. It was such value for money!
This entire lodge, complete with a garrage, belonged to us! To the average Singaporean who stays in an apartment, this was like a palace.
We checked in, and proceeded to explore the town centre, which was just a 15 minute walk away. As it was quite late, most of the shops were already closed. It was a rather quiet and peaceful town so there wasn’t much abuzz. So to entertain ourselves, we tried taking some ‘artsy’ shots, but failed miserably. Sharing them with you, just for laughs:
Seriously don’t know what we were doing… haha.
That said, the highlight of the night had to be the awesome stargazing we did. We drove a distance out to a place with no light pollution, and feasted on this beautiful sight:
So many shooting stars flew across the sky. We were starstruck. Literally.
Lake Marian Track
The next day, we started on the Lake Marian Track. Lake Marian is a beautiful alpine lake that is located in a valley. To get there, however, there is some intensive climbing to do. The good thing about the tracks in NZ is that the signboard at the start of the track gives you the estimated duration you’d need to complete it. For Lake Marian, we were given an estimated tracking time of 2.5 – 3h. As expected, we completed the entire track in 6 hours.
The start of the hike was a leisurely one, but it gradually grew steeper and more difficult. As we inched towards Lake Marian, however, we almost regretted embarking on this hike. That said, all our effort was soon forgotten as we reached the most beautiful lake we had ever laid eyes on.
This place was literally heaven on earth. The waters were crystal clear. As the fog started descending, we were treated to an even dreamier sight – it was almost surreal.
Need we say more?
Te Anau Glowworm Caves
Another must-see in Te Anau is the Te Anau Glowworm Caves. A glowworm is a a soft-bodied beetle with luminescent organs in the abdomen, giving it its soft glow. Contrary to popular belief, glowworms are not worms (does this reduce the ‘ewww’ factor? haha).
At the Te Anau Glowworm Caves, there are thousands of glowworms stuck to the roof of the caves. To get there, we departed from the Real Journeys office on the western shore of Lake Te Anau, and took a leisurely cruise to the caves. We then took a small boat into the caves. The return trip cost NZ$79, but the experience was well-worth it. Sadly, we don’t have any photos of the caves as photography is strictly prohibited. We managed to get some pictures of glowworm caves off the net, though:
Picture credit: https://www.realjourneys.co.nz/en/experiences/glowworm-caves/te-anau-glowworm-caves/images/
Picture credit: https://thetimetravellersclub.com/2014/01/09/glowworm-caves/
You’ll have an unforgettable once-in-a-lifetime experience immersing yourself in the wonders of nature, surrounded by these dazzling beauties.
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