Shan Bawden is a blogger and photographer who falls harder for Wanaka everytime she visits. Here's her Wanaka 'must-do' list for the Spring and Summer.
Words by Shannon Bawden
When I think of a summer roadie, my mind instantly drifts to the lakes and rugged mountaintops that surround the area of Wanaka.
There's something special about those mountain peaks that continues to draw me back.
Days spent on the lake, ending with sundowners and good people, nothing can top it! I had ten days, bags packed, no plans and a heart racing full of adventure. Excited to explore this epic part of the world, I packed my bags, loaded the car and hit the road. This trip was nothing short of incredible - rock jumping, wakeboarding, mountain hiking, local eating and damn good people!
Here's what I got up to on my recent roadie through Wanaka and its surrounding area.
➼ A sunrise hike to Rocky Mountain Summit
➼ Swimming at Glendhu Bay
➼ Cliff jumping at the Motatapu Gorge
➼ Sunset wakeboarding on the lake
➼ A 4x4 Highlights Safari with Ridgeline Adventures
➼ Sunset session at Dublin Bay
➼ Kai Whakapai - damn good muffins, coffee and great vibes
➼ Trout - waterfront eats and delicious craft beers!
➼ Fedeli Cafe - pastries and a quick espresso fix
➼ The Coffee Shack - best coffee in town!
➼ Wanaka Hotel - it's in the heart of town and there's tacos right at your doorstep!
➼ Hiking the Sawyer Burn track
➼ Rock jumping into the crystal clear water at 'The Neck'
➼ Sunset at Hawea Esplanade beach
➼ Driving the scenic Meads Road along the lake stretch
➼ Watching the brave surf the River Wave at the Camphill Bridge
➼ Mo's - a quick coffee buzz and yummy pastries
➼ The Camp - picturesque lakeside luxe glamping tents nestled beneath the mountains. A hidden gem!
➼ Walking the famous Blue Pools track
➼ A helicopter ride through the National Park - epic views of glaciers, Mt. Aspiring and an incredible mountaintop landing
➼ Standing beneath the roaring Thunder Creek Falls
➼ Riverside picnic at Cameron Flat
➼ Wonderland Makarora Lodge - early morning breakfast spot.
➼ Makarora Country Cafe - delicious ice cream
➼ Wonderland Makarora Lodge - quaint A-frame chalets against an epic backdrop