Real Estate

What the Yellow Rocks mean to New Zealand?

If you've been to New Zealand you'll know the yellow rocks that line the south coast of the country. Initially they were stones dropped by air from air balloons during the early 1900s to mark the Bay of Fires commemorative plaque, but more recently they have been formed by volcanic minerals found in the fro topping of the North Island.

The rocks are highly regarded for their beauty, their shape and their associations with various tribes.

The kauri is a wonderfully translucent Australian stone, with a history stretching back about 4 billion years. Naturally, these things naturally attract the attention of artists and crafts people. A large kauri tree can weigh several tonnes and grows to enormous sizes. Their trunk can reach up to and over 100 metres high!

The Otter is a legendary creature, in respects of both the diet and how fast it can survive. Both the Otter and the Falcon can dive on their stomachs and store food underground, waiting until a meal is available. They have also been known to swoop as high as 10 metres to pick up their prey.

The Dragon Tree Falls is on the South Island's lower slopes. It's said that if you can climb one of the falls you'll be able to see the other side of the falls in a frying pan.

For some people, the queuing part of any tourist event is the most exciting part of a holiday. This is certainly the case for ski bunnies. There are a lot of these around. They are cheap to organise and the advantage of not-so-festive months means that you don't have to face the crowds of the peak seasons. They are also ideal for winter parties.

Clubs are another popular choice. A bar with a live band is a great place to start, but you can also arrange a disco or party in a real village style. One of the main advantages of a club atmosphere than a traditional hotel bar is that you can be quite noisy without being rowdy, and without the risk of your host blinding you with a glowing 'ban l'igo' (a chemical used to MorAirize dangerous gas)!

Finally, there's the village option. A younger person looking for a riotous holiday might be happier with a cottage set in a village style, with a traditional village gazebo, a wine cellar, and plenty of time to ski or hike. A stay in a catered chalet in a village will be very outdoorsy, but might be very romantic. Some of these villages are great for skiing, including Les Menuires which won first prize in the 'Best Ski Resort' category in 1992, and Courchevel which won first prize in 1992.

Deciding which is best for you will very much depend on the type of holiday that you want. If you prefer a very indoorsy holiday, then you might be better off staying at a club hotel. Make sure the one you choose has access to good food and beds! Clubs are normally very comfortable and have facilities like massage rooms and laundry – and most charge a small fee for the use of the ski lift. However, you probably will not get the same kind of 'boarding-room' warmth and charm as you would in a boutique hotel. The warmth of a small, cosy cottage with warm tea and real table-service is very different to cold, cramped and uncomfortable ski chalets.

So, think about what sort of holiday you want, and take a little more time than you may realize. Choosing the kind of holiday that suits you will lead to a very memorable and enjoyable holiday.

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