New Zealand is a wonderland country. The travel here reminds a fairytale: alpine areas of tussock-covered mountains, wide coastal shores and deep rainforests, glacier lakes… We experience the beauty of the South island in November, when vast fields of lupines are flowering at shores of azure Tekapo and Pukaki lakes. It’s no doubt why Peter Jackson has chosen this wonderful country for filming the LOTR trilogy.
We visit several magical spots on our way including:
- Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park (including Pukaki and Tekapo lakes).
- Moeraki Boulders
- Te Anau and Milford Sound (including the scenic cruise through Milford Sound)
- Wanaka lake
- Fox Glacier, Matheson lake
- Motukiekie and Pancake rocks
So let’s open our adventure book!
Chapter one, 25th November, Friday: Christchurch
We’ll fly to arrive no later than 25th November in Christchurch. We’ve booked a hotel for you to get together for the dinner, have some rest after a long flight and discuss our upcoming journey. We recommend you to fly even 2 days earlier to avoid jet lag and be as fresh as hobbits starting their journey from The Shire.
Chapter two: lupine country, lake Tekapo
First pages of our adventure book are opened! Our first base is located near the lake Tekapo. This is our base for one night to explore shores of the lake to find best fields of lupines. They suppose to bloom here in November and early December. One of the main attractions for us is the church of Good Shepherd. Lupine fields are usually grow in circle around the church. In case we are lucky with the weather, we can practice the night photography near the church. Imagine infinite numbers of stars at the dark sky of New Zealand above colorful lupine fields surrounded by majestic mountains!
Chapters 3 and 4: into the mountains, Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park
In the morning we meet sunrise at shores of lake Tekapo. After checkout we continue to lake Pukaki. Amazing sharp peak of Mt Cook will reflect in its azure waters. Our next base will be Aoraki/Mt Cook village; this area is the origin of New Zealand’s tallest mountains. In the evening we shoot mountain landscapes and take the short trail to Tasman lake.
Next day we meet sunrise over the lake Pukaki with magnificent views over the Mount Cook. We take the hiking trail to the Hooker lake which is located right down the feet of this majestic mountain. The hiking trail is optional, mention that it will take us 1,5 hours of walk on a perfect path ascending to the mountains. At the Hooker valley itself we find plenty of small river cascades. If we will be lucky enough we will see icebergs floating in waters of Hooker lake. Late after the sunset we return to our base. Please prepare headlamps because we return to the dinner in the dark.
Chapter 5: North Otago
In the afternoon we’ll head towards North Otago, Oamaru. In the evening we go near the sea shore to meet the rare yellow-eyed penguin called hoyho. Oamaru is a small coastal town located near famous Moeraki boulders.
Chapter 6: alien boulders
Sunrise location is Moeraki boulders beach. Here we encounter strange rock formations: polished well-shaped rounded stones in the sea. In the daytime we have a short scenic drive along the shore towards our next location – village Kaka Point with the Nugget lighthouse located nearby. It is a fantastic location for milky way and sunrise sessions.
Chapter 7: the light in the dark
Sunrise at the Nugget Point lighthouse. Following breakfast and checkout we take a long drive towards Milford Sound, keeping the most majestic mountain landscape in New Zealand.
Chapter 8: the Sound
We meet sunrise at the shores of the fjord. Milford Sound located in a Fiordland National Park. It is a part of a World Heritage site described once by Rudyard Kipling as the “Eighth Wonder of the World”. The majestic Mitre peak rises above the fjord with vast shore offering lots of opportunities to shoot. In the afternoon we have a scenic cruise through the fjord. We meet the sunset at the shores of the fjord again: sunsets give even more chance to make a great shot here.
Chapter 9: Wanaka
In the morning we drive towards Wanaka. The famous lonely tree is located at the shores of Roy’s Bay, an iconic South Island’s spot.
Chapter 10: Queenstown
Morning session at Wanaka lake near the lonely tree. During the daytime we take a scenic drive along the Wanaka lake and continue to Arrowtown and Queenstown across the Crown Range. Please note that I took these shots in April, in November we’ll see green soft hills with fresh foliage.
Chapter 11: Farewell
We say farewell to each other. This is the last day of our journey, so its time to return home or… to start the second book! You may continue to North island from the Queenstown airport.
Please send inquire below, or at email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Included in the price:
– All transfers
– Instruction and master classes by two professional guides
– Milford Sound cruise
Not included in the price:
– Meals (except breakfasts)
– Visas (if applicable)
– Single supplement
What to bring
– DSLR camera with tripod and remote shutter release
– A wide angle lens. For example, Nikkor 14-24 or Canon 17-40. Best lens for use in wide-angle scenes or architecture photography
– A middle-zoom lens such as a 24-70 mm
– A telephoto zoom lens, such as a 70-200 mm. Be sure to have additional tripod mount to this lens.
– Waterproof and windproof jacket
– Waterproof pants
– Warm jacket and thermal pants
– Wellingtons or fishing boots
– Casual clothes for dinners and lunches and photography workshops
During the study in MIPT Daniel became an optics physicist. He gain experience not only in physics, but also in mountain climbing and hiking, guiding tourist groups in winter and in summer in mountains. Right after graduation he became a guide of photo-workshops and chief editor of “Continent expedition” magazine. This magazine is about travel and adventures all over the world. He has got several awards in photography: Golden Turtle’ 13 Nature nomination winner, National Geographic Russia contest 2013 and 2014 finalist, Best of Russia’13 and ’14 winner, best photographer’13 finalist and others. He is spending most of his time in Norway, Lofoten islands and in Tuscany at villa Gaia, guiding groups of photographers.