We were hoping to get a good view of New Zealand while flying into Queenstown. But we very quickly penetrated the cloud layer in our 737 and only punched through 2 minutes before we hit Queenstown. To access the Queenstown airport, the plane has to pass a mountain, so it’s an interesting landing. When we landed, the stewardess announced that we were lucky to land – they had recently installed equipment to allow them to land in inclement weather. It just seemed like a little bit of rain, but with that mountain there “a little bit of rain” is quite an obstacle.

We were lucky we were flying Air New Zealand. As we grabbed our bags, there were many announcements over the intercom explaining the options available to the Qantas passengers who were unable to leave because the Qantas flights were unable to land!

After Bethany inspected the large Icebreaker store, we grabbed our shuttles and headed out into our first taste of New Zealand – Queenstown.

This first impression was not overly favourable: it was raining out, and about 8 degrees – normal Vancouver weather. And when we arrived at our hotel, our impressions were not helped by the fact that our hotel was overbooked! They had arranged a room for us at a comparable B&B across town, and gave us a ride over there.

They did book us at a nice place. We had a glass of wine with the owner, and then headed down the very steep hill to the closest pub for supper. Cricket was on the telly.