Looking to go on a bit of a photography adventure? Are road trips, natural beauty, and dramatic landscapes your thing? Then the South Island of New Zealand is where you need to be. I was looking for all of those things and I found it. Don't believe me? Keep reading (and looking), the photos speak for themselves.
If you have ever seen any of the Lord of the Rings movies then you know New Zealand’s South Island is home to some of the most incredible landscapes the world has to offer. I recently spent a week-long holiday driving around that magical place with my boyfriend. I felt as though Frodo was going to be waiting patiently around every turn, eager to pose for my Holga 135; at the very least I was hoping for Elijah Wood, you know, Frodo sin hobbit get up but no such luck. However, the scenery didn’t disappoint and I have the photos to prove it.
Our journey took us from Christchurch to Queenstown to Hokitika and back, not to mention all the little here, there, and in-betweens. These cities, towns, and settlements were impressive in their own right but it was the expansive, open road connecting these inhabited places that I found to be the most fascinating. Not only were there surprises around every corner, these roadways provided the best photo ops; and because this trip was largely, oh who am I kidding, entirely planned so I could put my Holga 135 and Pentax Spotmatic to work, I came home with over 400 photos to remind me of just how stunning a place New Zealand really is.
From bend to bend I sat anxiously at the edge of the passenger seat waiting to see what would appear. Sometimes it would be a long range of snow-capped mountains.
Sometimes it would be cliff edges, plunging down into the sea, providing the perfect opportunity for my boyfriend to watch, for the very first time, a sun set over the ocean.
Then we’d see a sign on the side of the road letting us know something was just behind these trees. We’d pull over to find the mountains and sky being reflected in still water pools.
Or a sign would point us in the direction of a random lookout where we’d find scenery so incredible, and only a moment before we had been naively driving amongst it.
Even those places that you expect to be gorgeous due to the tourist attractions they have become, exceed your expectations.
If you’re planning a trip to New Zealand, make it a road trip, stay off the beaten path, and prepare to be astounded. Never let your camera leave your hands and bring along plenty of film, believe me you’ll need it.