Visiting the Blue Pools, you’ll find a series of unbelievably turquoise pools just below a waterfall that opens up into a wide river below. The banks are littered with smooth, round stones, and the glacial mineral runoff refracts the sun’s light to create the most beautiful blue water imaginable. If it wasn’t for the hordes of sandflies, this would truly be paradise.
Once you leave Queenstown, drive up between Lake Wanaka and Lake Hawea for spectacular views of both lakes and Mt. Aspiring National Park to the West. We highly recommend the reasonably-priced and comfortable A-Frame accommodations at the Makarora Tourist Centre, just below Mt. Shrimpton and adjacent to Mt. Aspiring National Park.
If you’re driving from Queenstown toward the West Coast, be sure to check out Arrowtown; there are plenty of accommodations, from camping or renting a cabin at the local holiday park to private rentals, all just a short drive from the busy streets of Queenstown.