Wanaka, New Zealand

Travel withdrawal. It sucks. You desperately want to travel somewhere. Anywhere! But for whatever reason you can’t. After spending an endless amount of evenings looking at tropical holidays to Fiji, chilly adventures to Scandinavia, and cultural experiences in Chile, I decided it was time for a weekend break to try and ease the travel blues. And so, the boyfriend and I packed up the car and headed to a beautiful part of New Zealand called Wanaka.

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Scenery from our drive to Wanaka.

Wanaka is a three hour scenic drive from my home town making it quite an accessible destination for a weekend pick-me-up. We arrived about lunch time and parked in the carpark of our accommodation because all the carparks in town were full. This is no joke. Wanaka is PACKED. We chose to stay at The Moorings because we wanted a view of the beautiful lake and mountains but still only a short wander to restaurants and shops. The Moorings is the perfect location for these needs!

View from The Moorings Wanaka
The view from our room.

For lunch we headed to Cafe Gusto which has a nice view of the lake and an amazing Chicken Teriaky Pineapple Burger. YUUUUMMMMMY. After devouring the burger (we were starving) we went back to our room to relax on our own wee patio, enjoy the view, and eat some junk food. Feeling recharged it was time to head to Puzzling World!

Puzzling World will entertain you with illusion rooms, a tilted room which will seriously mess with your balance, and tonnes of other mind tricks to keep you entertained. Once you have finished inside, it’s time to head outside and conquer the great maze. There are four corner colours you need to get to complete the maze and also find your way out. People typically walk 3-5km while completing this maze. Please note, if you are going to do this maze with a loved one, please make sure your relationship is VERY, VERY, VERY strong as it can be quite testing. I do wonder how many relationships the great maze has destroyed. Afterwards you can grab a bite and a drink and sit in their café which has puzzles and games at all the tables. There is also a wee gift shop where you can buy various puzzles, games, and oddities.

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Puzzling World Wanaka
What do you see? Columns or men standing facing each other (in between the columns)?
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Part of the maze

The rest of our afternoon was spent going for wanders along the lakefront and enjoying the view before a massive dinner at the Speights Ale House where we got 10% off thanks to a card The Moorings had given us.

Following dinner it was time for our evening adventure out to Ruby’s Movie Cinema and Bar. I was able to sip on a chocolate martini while relaxing in a lazy-boy watching The Fate of the Furious. They bring any drinks and snacks you order directly to your seat and halfway through the movie there is a wee intermission for replenishing your drinks/snacks. A+ 10/10 would recommend to a friend.

Day two began with a sleep in and 10am check out before heading out to Wanaka Lavender Farm! The farm is absolutely beautiful even in autumn when all the lavender has been harvested. You can wander around the gardens and check out the scenery and just generally enjoy the outdoors. Plus the Alpacas are pretty entertaining. Once you have finished wandering about the gardens, head inside to try some lavender ice cream, or lavender cookies, or lavender truffles (YUM), or even lavender tea! Whatever you choose to indulge in, I guarantee it will be yummy! There is also a gift shop where you can buy lavender or honey goods such as candles, moisturizers, and scented bags.

Wanaka Lavender FarmWanaka Lavender FarmWanaka Lavender Farm

Travel in Wanaka, New ZealandFeeling sleepy from all the lavender we decided we needed to wake up before the drive home. Luckily just down the road the Wanaka Lavender Farm there is Have a Shot Wanaka. 25 rounds target shooting with a 22 calibre rifle and we were feeling pumped and awake for the drive home! There is also claybird shooting, archery, mini golf, and a few other things to keep you entertained. It was my first time firing a gun and I was surprised at how easy it was. This was so much fun and I loved every second of it. We finished up our time in Wanaka with lunch at the Trout before heading home and stopping at a few scenic lookouts! An excellent weekend away to numb the travel thirst.

Traveling around Wanaka, New Zealand
View from the road which takes you to Wanaka from Queenstown
The road to Wanaka, New Zealand
The road to Wanaka from Queenstown

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