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QTMAGAZINE SUMMER 2018
ALL FOR ONE. ALL FOR FUN.
Our gear provides high-performance and top-tier
technology to help you reach new heights and new
personal bests. But it’s also to enable fun. We try
to bring a sense of pleasure and play to active outdoor
adventures whenever possible. Because the whole point
in life is to enjoy it. Do what you love, and do it often with
your Merrell gear. It’s made to last.
LEt’s gEt OUtsidE sHOwcAsEs
tHE NEw zEALANd RANgE OF
mERRELL ANd stOcks A LARgE
RANgE OF pAtAgONiA pROdUcts
LOCAL MERRELL STORE
11 THE MALL, QUEEnSTOwn
mERRELL is ON A missiON
We believe that nothing should get in the way of enjoying
active outdoor adventures. There’s a whole world you
can leave your mark on. Run. Jump. Jog. Trip on a root
and skin your knee. Do what’s natural.
A rallying cry that speaks to the instinct telling you to
get outside. When you follow your own nature, there
isn’t a barrier that can prevent you from experiencing
the great outdoors or a rule that can give you instruction
on how you should do it. From the most skilled outdoor
enthusiast, to the beginner hiker, or urban cruiser, when
you do what’s natural, you make the adventure your own
– your own path, your own story, your own nature,
you do what feels right. Real + Authentic + Natural.
wHAt mAttERs mOst
From our very first custom made hiking boots to our
latest product innovations, we make all of our products
with five core values in mind: Comfort, Durability,
Design, Style, and Versatility. It’s all about removing
the barriers to enjoying the great outdoors.
We believe that doing what you love should feel good,
both mentally and physically. Merrell stands for durable,
high-performance products that last. Therefore we go to
great lengths to ensure that form, feel and functionality
all come together seamlessly. Merrell fits a wide variety
of people, for a wide variety of adventures.
yOUR Own nATURE,
yOUR Own pATH,
yOUR Own STORy.
The Homer tunnel is undoubtedly a highlight. Due to the dash cam and
glass roof I can see more of this incredible feat of engineering and on
reaching the other side the mountains tower over us. I recline my seat
back to look up through the roof, drinking in the incredible scener y as
we arrive at Milford Sound for the nex t stage of our adventure –
the Southern Discoveries cruise.
The company offers five different cruises – Scenic, Nature and
Encounter Cruises and Discover More and Cruise & Kayak packages
that include a visit to the Milford
Sound Underwater Observatory.
The coaches from Queenstown connect
with the Nature and Scenic cruises
which makes for seamless travel.
Each of the individual cruises
provide a different perspective
of the spectacular Milford Sound
environment with its towering Mitre
Peak and remarkable
I chose the Nature
Cruise which is per fect
for people who love
wildlife. The trip is
accompanied by a
the black coral, seals
and other flora and
fauna Milford is famous for. We saw
seals basking on the rocks and were
doused by an impressive water fall
but the high point was a visit from a
resident pod of bottlenose dolphins
who playfully splashed alongside the
The commentary was funny, fluid
and informative – our guide had us
in stitches, looking out for penguins and other wildlife and learning the
reason for the names of the famous peaks, water falls and mountains as
we went by.
The friendly crew ser ved a delicious Kiwi-style hot buffet lunch on
board with all the personal touches that reflected the consistent
professionalism encountered throughout the trip – from the coach
driver to the cruise staff – definitely a cut above the rest.
I arrive at Southern Discoveries’ information centre bright and early
at 6:45am bound for a road trip to Milford Sound. Our driver Gabe
Oldenhof is already there to greet us with the company’s purpose-built
coach which was launched in late winter 2017 and is making waves in
the tourist industry.
There’s a saying that travel is “about the journey, not the destination,”
but in the case of Milford Sound, it’s both. On the map this world-
famous natural attraction looks like an easy morning’s drive from
Queenstown. But New Zealand’s dramatic landscape dictates the
shape of the road which twists around mountains and glacier-fed lakes
for almost four hours. I ’m happy to let the professionals do it.
The new Scania 400EB coaches are sustainable and luxurious.
They’re low-emission and meet Euro Five standards and there are
reclining seats and WiFi and USB charging por ts on board.
But, by far and away the best feature is the view the new coaches
provide – seen through large windows, a glass roof and a big
screen showing dashboard
As we take the winding road
towards Te Anau for our first
coffee stop Gabe informs us about
the landscape and local histor y.
The narrative is also available in
six different languages, but it’s
great to get a personal insight
from him – he knows so much
about ever ything and ever yone in
“It’s a long drive, so I like to
point out things and tell a few
stories and jokes. There’s a time
for sleeping too, that’s when I’ll
be quiet, but I always make sure
nobody misses the interesting
stuff along the way,” he says.
“Driving to Milford all the time, I could get a bit blasé about the views.
But chatting to visitor s on the coach reminds you it ’s spectacular. The
passengers can’t believe what they see. Personally, my favourite par t
of the drive is from Knobs Flat through to the famous Homer tunnel.”
At a stop shor tly after Knobs Flat we meet the infamous Kea – the
clown-like alpine parrot who enjoys pulling antennae off car s. Thanks
to the USB por ts on board the coach, my phone is fully charged and I
manage to get some great footage of this rare and mischievous bird.
Milford Sound is New Zealand’s most stunning
natural attraction and Southern Discoveries has
recently launched its state-of-the-art new coaches
providing a premium road service from Queenstown.
Bethany Rogers went along for the ride.
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