You, Me & Friends “Favourite Places” *** Aoraki – Mt Cook ***

Even on route to the mountain, the scenery is stunning. In particular, the last 40 minutes of the journey as you travel along the sparkling shores of  the Lake Pukaki, with the water made milky blue by the rock ground to powder by the Glacier that feeds it.

As you pull up to the Hermitage Hotel, you know you have arrived somewhere special.

This beautifully designed complex makes the most of the amazing views. From our hotel balcony, a fantastic snow capped range dominated the vista, including a sneak peek of Mt Cook every once and a while when the clouds parted. At 3,724 metres high, Hillary practiced his climbs on Mt Cook before tackling Everest, claiming Aoraki to be the more technically difficult to summit.

The morning following our arrival, we set off on our tour. It started with a bus ride into Mount Cook National Park, then a brisk 20 minute walk along the tussock and scree paths to where our speed boats were berthed on Tasman lake. We boarded our craft, and sped out on the still waters to the ice face, with our national park guide giving us narrative all the way.

At 27kms long, up to 2kms wide, 600metres deep, and 2 million years in the making, the Tasman Glacier is NZ’s largest mainland ice-flow containing nearly one-third of all Glacier ice in New Zealand.

Our visit to Tasman Glacier still remains as one of the highlights of all of our South Island tours.


Oh my gosh, we all had a fantastic day out. Thank you so much. I really didn’t expect to like all those weird and wonderful snacks during the "Curious Food Train" activity, and didn’t think they would all participate. The staff all keep thanking us for such a great day. Looking forward to next years event!