Our honeymoon: Tekapo, Christchurch, Cook Islands

Last part of our honeymoon

After having told you about the first and second part of our honeymoon, we are almost at the end of this incredible journey.
The last place I talked about was Wanaka Lake, with its photogenic tree immersed in the lake, photographed from every angle! It was time to leave and this time the route would have given us even more exciting landscapes!

Road to Tekapo Lake

The road between Wanaka and Tekapo was absolutely the most varied and beautiful of the whole trip (yes, it even beats that for Milford Sound). In less than two hours we had crossed all sorts of vegetation, from the most lush and green, to the barren landscape of a pass, to an expanse of grass with a 30km long straight road surrounded by snow-capped mountains. A continuous wonder.

I know I’m repeating myself, but the beauty of New Zealand is the path. Unexpectedly you can find yourself taking a detour intrigued by a landscape rather than another or, as it happened in our case, by a sign that reads “Clay Cliff”. I had read it in passing on the guide and then decided to go and visit this place. We drove a few kilometers (on a white road of course) and arrived at a gate. On the side, a small metal box with the words “pay here”. To visit that place in fact you had to enter a private property, but the required fee was really ridiculous so we did not think twice, we put the coins in the box, we opened the gate (I felt very much like a owner of a ranch at that moment) and we continued the journey.

After leaving the car in a pitch and walking for about twenty minutes we saw the entrance of something that promised to be a real discovery. We passed the cavity and here we are surrounded by high pinnacles eroded by water and air. And to think that this, millions of years ago, was a glacier. The terrain was very slippery, but the show and the awareness of being inside an ancient glacier was fascinating.

It was already time to leave. Tekapo was waiting for us! The path continued to make us dream, especially when we skirted Lake Pukaki from which we could see Mount Cook in the distance.

And here we are in Tekapo, with its characteristic church overlooking the lake and surrounded by mountains. The day was fresh and the sky was clear. Would we have had the opportunity to witness another wonderful sunset? Waiting to find out if we were right or not, we walk near the church, we met a pair of hares and admired the breathtaking view.

Yes, the sunset had amazed us this time too!

Now the desire to see the milky way in the various places was a lot. On the other hand, you had to take advantage of a sky so clear of clouds. Andrea took a cold that evening, but when you take pictures you are so focused as not to feel anything, not even the cold … but it deserved, what do you think?

Road to Christchurch

The day after we left for Christchurch, hit in 2011 by a strong earthquake. We were warned that we would find a city full of skittles, construction sites and a little understated. This time, the road we were going through was not as exciting as it was the previous day. Let’s say that after having traveled that stretch it would hardly have found one at his height. However, the surprises are always around the corner and a few kilometers from Tekapo we saw on the right this beautiful exhibition! We lost a bit of time to see it, rummaging through ancient objects and beautiful signs and then decided to take back the car. A few kilometers to go were waiting for us!

A landscape like this seems like a desktop background, right? We had seen it in the distance, just out of a curve, when we decided to take another road to admire it more closely. It was simply fantastic!

And here we are in Christchurch, with its cathedral heavily hit by the earthquake. It was also due to the fact that we visited on Sunday and the city center was not teeming with people or open shops, but the shock of the earthquake suffered just a few years earlier. But as happens in these situations, the desire to start and start again is so much and a few minutes later, turning a corner, we came across a playground for children (and not only) totally new, giant and full of fun.

It was almost time for dinner and the premises open there were not many, but we were hit by one in particular: a South American restaurant. The way it had been furnished transported us to another place, as if we were no longer in NZ. And the food … libidinous! It was the perfect dinner to end our New Zealand tour!

Road to Isole Cook

After spending two weeks in places with a totally different climate, knowing that we are about to reach a destination with a stable and warm climate, it attracted us so much! I could not wait to splash around in those crystal clear waters and put on my flip flops!

The perfect welcome: something cool to drink and the necklace of flowers 🙂

We had arrived in the resort of Rarotonga, a stone’s throw from the sea, with these shelters in which to shelter from the hot sun and from which to admire the view listening to the sound of the waves … it was a dream!

As it was also lying on the seashore and admire the sky …

The following day a guide would come to pick us up for a tour of the island, telling us some curiosity!

He showed us how coconut is harvested, how it is processed and how any piece of this fruit is used!

And above all, he took us to lunch in the best restaurant on the island, where fish are caught 10 meters from where they cook it. It was fabulous!

Do you also find that the spaghetti combined with eating for dogs and cats are a bit out of tune?

In the evening a special appointment awaited us: a visit to a Maori village with Polynesian dances. I was delighted to have seen two Maori villages in completely different places because although they resembled each other, some aspects were different, especially in the dances, sweeter and more joyous to the Cook Islands and more full of energy and power in New Zealand. And to think that this culture was born right in these small Polynesian islands!

Rarotonga, the first of the two islands that we would have visited, had already made us fall in love, with its relaxation, cocktails by the sea and the sky covered with stars, but now I waited to see from above what is called the most beautiful lagoon of the world: Aitutaki.

Ok, it has a “light” foundation of truth!

The villa where we stayed was 10 meters from the sea and from the terrace you could dream with your eyes open. Waking up in the morning and seeing the palm trees that framed the turquoise sea was wonderful!

We were ready to admire the beauties of the lagoon. We climbed on the boat that would take us to those magical places and we continued to admire the transparent sea.

These guys were legendary! They sang local songs (and some parodies invented by them), they cooked us a delicious lunch and took us to the most beautiful beach I’ve ever seen!

Little curiosity: this mass of rocks in the past was an old pier from which people who boarded the seaplanes started and landed. Air New Zealand was born here!

We also did snorkeling! The backdrop was beautiful … a little less the giant fish that swam around me just before I got out of the water!

And here it is: One Foot Island, so named because it recalls the shape of a foot seen from above. Walking on this sand seemed to tread on cotton wool. It was a dream to be there! We walked on that beach, we were lulled by the waves and we enjoy every moment of that time.

And yes, we also managed to get a picture taken by a tourist!

Back in our resort, we thought back to the incredible experiences we had lived on that day and the wonders that had filled our eyes, when, just before going to dinner, we saw this sunset. Perfect days exist.

As much as we like to relax, we never manage to stay still, so that morning we decided to take some bikes and go around the island (one hour of bike and the ride would be completed). We went downtown, ate something and then went to explore the other side of the island … and we stopped them because the beach was too inviting!

It was our last evening on the island, before returning to Italy. I wanted to enjoy the sun and the calm of that place until the last moment.

And in the morning, when we woke up, we discovered that there would be a wedding, just before leaving the resort! We just can not stay away!

It was officially the moment to greet these enchanted places and return to reality. In those three weeks we had experienced intense, important experiences and we had filled our eyes and hearts with beautiful landscapes that we would see again in the sea of photos taken.

It is true when it is said that the honeymoon is unique. It is not a simple journey because we are not simply travelers. It is as if the magic of wedding day goes on, placing you in a totally unique and indescribable mental condition and just because it is indescribable I can not explain it to you, but if you are married you understand perfectly what I am talking about, while if you are not yet, know that days are waiting for you and you will remember those days forever.

And for those who want, below you can see our video of the honeymoon, consisting of video clips and images!

Have a nice day,

Ilaria

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