Wanaka, New Zealand
Wanaka, a resort town on New Zealand's South Island, is set on the southern end of its namesake lake with views of snowcapped mountains. It's the gateway to the Southern Alps' Mount Aspiring National Park, a wilderness of glaciers, beech forests and alpine lakes.
Lake Wanaka is New Zealand's fourth largest lake and a wonderful area to explore. offering world class restaurants and accommodation in a magical setting. Wanaka supports its own huge range of activities including, hiking, boating, fishing, mountain biking and in winter, skiing and snowboarding.
Treble Cone and Cardrona ski resorts are near the park. Just outside the town is the outdoor maze and sculpture gallery.
But to us, in the middle of summer (January), even though there was no sign of any ocean nearby, Wanaka reminded us of a surfie town. The people were relaxed, friendly and it was well laid out. The town seemed quite chilled. It really should be more famous as a tourist destination that it is.
Great little places to eat. Some great little bars and possibly the world's best bakery called "Doughbin".