From Christchurch, we headed up to Port Hills where we were treated to some amazing views. It was a little bizarre not having to stop to let the van cool down as we drove the mountain pass - definitely a different experience to being in our T25!

After a free camp, we drove the Inland Scenic Route 72 which had stunning snow-capped mountains as its backdrop.

Our next stop was at Lake Tekapo.

We found an amazing place to wild camp!

That night, we went to Tekapo Springs for their star gazing tour. The first half was a talk on the stars and a chance to view them through their telescopes, and the second half involved floating in their hot springs looking up at the night sky - quite an experience! We were interested to learn that although you can see some of the same constellations here as in England (you might be able to make out the saucepan in one of the photos), they can see numerous others too. What we thought were two small clouds turned out to be two whole other galaxies!

We finally got to bed at 3am. I was a little worried that we might sleep all day, but waking up to this view certainly gave us some inspiration to get out and about.

We hiked up Mount John where we enjoyed more beautiful views of the surrounding lakes.

All in all, we can thoroughly recommend Canterbury!