City of the Month: Wanaka (NSFW)

Wanaka is kind of Queenstown’s under-appreciated little brother. Only a hour drive apart, there’s little that Wanaka does that Queenstown doesn’t do, bigger and better. Yet the quality of being less full-on than Queenstown is sort of what makes Wanaka so great.

An egregiously pretty place, it’s the perfect size for wandering. It’s also fantastic place for reading by the lake, or walking around it. It’s also the gateway to Mt. Aspiring Park, which we haven’t been to but we suspect might be one of the raddest places in the world.

The picturesque lake.

The picturesque lake.

There are a couple of microbreweries in Wanaka, which is more than Queenstown can say. The supermarket is giant and loaded with good deals (This matters, perhaps more than it should, to us.) They also have one of the single greatest bar musicians–Robby, who plays 5 hour sets with covers of every song ever at a local Irish pub. We were there in mid-summer, and it stayed light seemingly forever.

Nothing remarkable about this photo...except that it was taken at 10 pm!

Nothing remarkable about this photo…except that it was taken at 10 pm!

But wait! That’s not all! Just outside Wanaka is the stupendous Puzzletown, which has crazy interior mirages and magic. Plus a giant maze that takes hours (for us) to properly solve. Puzzletown is kind of the greatest place in the world.

Puzzletown!

Puzzletown!

Finally, there’s this. I have no explanation for it. We were reading by the lake, innocently eating our PB&J sandwiches, when along came this lady who apparently lost her clothes somewhere along the way. Maybe Wanaka doesn’t lack the full-on aspect afterall.

Naked Lake Lady

Naked Lake Lady

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