Hot Springs of Tekapo
The taxi was a little early and the bikes fitted easily in their bags, so we were at the bus stop with plenty of time to spare. The bus to Dunedin was waiting and it was surprising how many people didn't realise that was their bus and joined the queue for the Christchurch bus once it arrived. We joked with the bus driver that we were tempted to go to Dunedin instead given his efforts to find his passengers.
It was going to be a full bus to Christchurch, and we couldn't get seats together by the time we boarded. Debbie, the bus driver, had missed her calling as a tour guide and gave us a running commentary of all the key sights as we passed, as well as keeping us informed of any errant driver behaviour.
The scenery was absolutely stunning and I would totally recommend exploring the route between Queenstown and Lake Tekapo. We had cycled some of it back in 2016, and travelled some of the same route on our return from Middlemarch at the end of the Otage Rail Trail. Some of the most scenic vistas we will revisit as we cycle the Alps2Ocean - fingers crossed the weather is fine!
We were able to drop off our bikes and bags at our hotel, strategically located next to the bus stop so we didn't have to carry them too far. We had some excellent chicken burgers at Reflections Cafe then wandered down to visit the Church of the Good Shepherd and were intrigued by all the cairns on the shore. We also visited the bronze memorial to working collie dogs.
We checked into our room, then headed along the lakefront to hike the Mount John summit track with its incredible 360 degree views of the Mackenzie basin and back towards Lake Tekapo. We finished our walk with a soak in the Tekapo Hot springs with its multiple pools ranging from 28 - 38 degrees. A wonderful balm to our cycle-weary legs.
After walking back to town we detoured via the Tekapo Street Food market and picked up a delicious beef brisket and chicken curry for dinner.