Backpacking in Queenstown: New Zealand’s One

Backpacking in Queenstown: New Zealand’s One

So what to make of this one?No really, the “party capital” of New Zealand, the “adventure capital” of the world, that is exactly what Queenstown is. There is no reason for this town to even exist. It is a humanly created paradise.

Arriving on a sunny afternoon I got off my bus in the city centre. An oxymoron in itself given the word “town” is in the city’s title. Actually who really cares. The fact is I was lost in the middle of the town, yet from the tourist information found it to be only a 7 minute walk to my hostel. On reflection I should have camped out that night.

It would have saved me 10 dollars, and would have meant not carting my excess baggage up sun drenched streets past people so young, I had to double take that my own beard growth wasn’t merely teenage stubble. Age aside, the place was vibrant, comfortable and welcoming.

My wallet and mind were slightly eager. And in honesty I would have done “The Nevis”, the world’s second biggest bungy jump and “THE BUNGY JUMP TO DO” was it not for the extortionate price and the fact that realistically my bungy jump had been done. Ain’t that one of those things you only do once in life?? Maybe not and the future will tell, but I was checked into the hostel, Southern Laughter. 

There at least I met Tim from England, 2 Swedish guys, an Argentinian guy from either Cordoba or Mendoza (had I cared slightly more that Argentina was my next country venue I’d have confirmed) and some nice German guys. We shared a kitchen and a bathroom, and there was never a queue for either during my stay. PLUS, against the odds I got a decent night’s sleep in Queenstown. And partook in Paragliding, Sightseeing, Pub Crawling, Fergburgering (a sport in itself, proven here…) and Gondoling.

These things aside, as a 30 year old I’d pretty much squashed these younguns, and therefore Queenstown, “to a pulp.” The Germans, or their pips in their lemons didn’t hang around for me, as sunrise came, the two Brits, (myself and Tim) had departed from the town we almost felt too old for.

Though life just ain’t like that. I’ve partied much harder than Queenstown can, believe me, I’d look at these years of carnage and then ask myself why I even care to visit.

1997 – Bangor – Windsor, Calico Jacks, Boomers – where the party was, and an era still drowned in terrorism, Oasis tunes and a new British Prime Minister
2003 – Bournemouth – Goodness me I carved my way round every bar in the town meeting people from places such as Angola and Brazil
2009 – Parramatta – a new found me had found a new home for my youth. The vibrant staff at PJ Gallagher’s Irish Pub. Without listening to an accent, you’d struggle to guess the token Irish worker in such a pub.
2010 – Queenstown – “Does this hostel have decent beds? Cos I wouldn’t mind a sleep” (incidentally my hostel balcony pictured there).

Before I close this post, I’m not an old fart, I’m not even getting old. I just wish I’d been to Queenstown when Oasis were big. Maybe then I’d have been the guy up partying rather than the quiet boy in the corner. Both were just as good, actually. And well, I must salute Queenstown. It’s continued the era of 90s “we don’t give a fuck partying” into a new era, and for new people. Of which I’m not actually one.

Perhaps I’ll visit it again one day. As a 60 year old. And I’ll “do the fucking Nevis” to show these young ones what life really proves. 

Nationalities Met – New Zealand, Australian, Scottish, German, English, Swedish, Argentinian, Northern Irish (em…it wasn’t me)

Action Sports I Done – Drinking A Beer, Paragliding, Power Napping, Fergburgering, Gondoling and NOT Doing the Fucking Nevis

KEY SONGS:

OASIS – LIVE FOREVER:

CAST – FLYING (well I fucking remember how good music was in 1996):

DOWNTOWN QUEENSTOWN:

HARBOUR FRONT IN QUEENSTOWN:

GONDOLA IN QUEENSTOWN:

VIEW OVER QUEENSTOWN, NEW ZEALAND FROM BEN LOMOND:

SOMEBODY DOING THE FUCKING NEVIS:

ME BUNGY JUMPING IN AUCKLAND IN 2007:

LEAVING QUEENSTOWN ON INTERCITY BUS:
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