I have never seen water so blue. Bluer than... than... well, take the last really blue thing you saw, picture it in your mind, and now multiply it by about a thousand million trillion and you might get an idea of the blue I am talking about.
Glentanner Park Centre is situated about 20km south of Mount Cook Village, in the South Island of New Zealand. The gentle waves of Lake Pukaki lap at the edges of this beautiful campsite, and it was the blueness of this lake that left me astounded and... well, put it this way, I doubt I will ever see such a bright, clear, crisp shade of blue ever again. The lake is fed by glaciers, and is saturated with rock particles carved out of the glacial valleys. This "rock flour" is held in suspension in the water, and is what gives the water its blue hue (someone should write a poem about that, it rhymes so well!).
The Glentanner Park Centre is found on the road into Mount Cook, and is part of Glentanner Station, a 182 square metre high country farm. The tent sites command some of the best views anywhere in the world. Simply by throwing the flaps of your tent open you will be confronted by a breathtaking sunrise casting a golden fan over graphite mountains. Keas, the world's only alpine parrot, squeal welcomes to the rising sun as they perform an aerial dance of precision and colour, flapping their green and red wings in the gathering warmth.
Tent sites at Glentanner only cost $13, and include wonderful hot showers (with unlimited hot water), full cooking facilities, a dinning room, and a TV lounge. Of course, if the weather is bad and you don't want to put up your tent, dorms are available for $25, and family cabins can be rented for $60 - $95 (sleeping up to 4).
The owners of the campsite, which also includes a well stocked shop and cafe, also provide flightseeing tours by helicopter, horse trekking, jet boat trips, and fishing tours. There are more walking tracks nearby than you can shake a stick at.
But it is the scenery that makes this place special. [more ]