Recently went down to Queenstown for a week, got back last thursday. Was such an awesome trip, I went hiking up mountains almost every day, and kayaking. I love the south island, mountainous and rocky, with entirely different biodiversity.
I really like the more cold adapted plants. So many coniferous trees, and the pine forests are interesting even if they're a massive pest. I found many edible plants you would not see in Auckland, wild cherries, walnut, gooseberries, and further into central Otago, entire landscapes were covered in thyme. I have been reading about edible natives and others too, really if you know what to look for, its hard to go hungry anywhere that has plants growing.
I really miss being there, already. I would love to live somewhere like Queenstown, but generally the towns in the south island seem too small and.. limiting. Canada is beginning to look more appealing, but that wouldn't be for many years and I have much research to do.
Otherwise I found amazing vanilla incense which is like crack to me, driftwood, beads, animal skeletons beneath nearly every rock in Alexandra, and Queenstown has much more interesting bars than Auckland. I doubt anyone really cares, but I'll post some photos here anyway.
Ontop of a hill. We found tadpoles in the swamps up there :O
Also ontop of Queenstown hill..
Large, slow moving, high altitude weevils found at the top of a mountain.
Old dam at Alexandra
Yeah. Will hopefully be getting out of Auckland again at the end of this month, for some epic road tripping. Much organising to do...