Wilderness Lodge at Lake Moeraki or Arthur's pass?

Old Apr 16th, 2007, 11:50 AM
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Wilderness Lodge at Lake Moeraki or Arthur's pass?

We want to try to work one of these into our itinerary but don't know which one would be best. We would only be there for 1 maybe 2 nights so our time would be limited. Which one would give us a better experience in a short amount of time.
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Old Apr 16th, 2007, 05:28 PM
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Can only speak to Arthur's Pass; have not stayed at Lake Moeraki, though drove past it. We lucked out when we called about two weeks before our trip. They generall have a two night minimum, but they had a single night open on the day we wanted (convenient?). We drove from Christchurch and arrived at the lodge about 1PM. Late lunch. Signed up for the sheep excursion (included in price) which was one of the highlights of our two weeks in south island.
We walked to a paddock in a driving rain (weather gear provided) and watched the dogs bring in a flock. The herdsman tolds us much about the merino sheep.
We all had a chance to hold a sheep. When held correctly, they go completely limp.
We then walked to the shearing shed and got a exhibition of shearing, and some of the guests got to do some.
Trucks and vans took us back up the hill to the lodge.
Dinner that night (included) was very good, no, excellent, and table conversation was "interesting." (But I don't mean unpleasant).
Dinner is a seating, several courses, with some tables as much as 8, some just for 2. You have a choice. We ended up at a table for 8. The views from the Dining room were stunning sunsets.
That night, short walk out into the bush for an astronomy lesson with telescopes for the southern sky.
Next morning, rained out of a short birding walk (included). The breakfast was terrific.
The room was basic mountain style with a great view of the river valley and the mountains beyond. Staff was friendly and helpful. There is a little gift shop where I bought a merino wool undershirt, and the price was fair, though all merino wool is expensive, but oh so worth it, IMHO.
Later at the big stores in Queenstown, the prices were similar.
All and all, a fine 24 hours. Is it worth the splurge type price? Was for us.
Note: some guests were confused as to what excursions were and were not included in price. I didn't see how, cause I thought the web site explained it well. Maybe just didn't do their homework well.
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Old Apr 18th, 2007, 01:25 PM
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I feel that 2 nights is best to get the most out of these places.

From my report:


The other Garden of Eden

We then headed south to Lake Morecki where we checked into Wilderness Lodge (9). It was a beautiful place in a beautiful setting. We had reserved lodge rooms, but were given garden rooms which were significantly larger and very attractive. The only problem was that they were not sound-proof (which seemed to common in NZ). We went on a guided walk through a primeval forest for an hour. Dinner was delicious. It had started raining heavily, and by the next morning had rained 4".

Next AM, another short guided walk, followed by a long self-guided walk to gorgeous Monro Beach (9), with rocky outcropings and crashing waves, all guarded by armies of mosquitoes. We had gotten a box lunch from WLLM ($20), but carried them back to a picnic bench near the lodge where the setting was idyllic. Arline said that the place was magic. We were exhilaratingly exhausted.

At 9PM, a large group went on a guided walk in the middle of route 6 highway in the dark to see the glowworms along the road and to see the southern cross, a brilliant full moon, and Jupiter.

Next morning a short guided walk to feed the large eels which lived along the bank of Lake Morecki. There was a fleeting view of a brilliant double rainbow.
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Old Apr 19th, 2007, 07:10 AM
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We also booked just one night at the Arthur's Pass lodge. I was in 2 minds whether to book, due to the cost but I'm glad we did. We had one of the standard rooms, which was comfortable enough but it is the views that make it spectacular. The lodge is built so that all rooms, dining room and lounge have spectacular views over the mountains. The evening meal and breakfast were very good and we were given the choice of eating alone or joining other guests. As it was a clear night, they abandoned the slide show and asked us if we wanted to go star gazing - which was amazing. We woke up to see the sun rising over the snow capped mountains - a memory that will always stay with me. These are views from our room at the lodge:

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Old Feb 19th, 2011, 06:29 AM
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Maria H...If you're still checking this forum....what time of year did you visit the Arthur's Pass lodge?
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Old Feb 20th, 2011, 05:53 PM
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Have stayed at both - one night each, but if I had to choose one I think it would be Arthur's Pass. Click on my screen name and you will see my NZ trip report, which has details on each. Either one will give you a wonderful trip.
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