Staying in...Twizel, NZ
If for some reason you happen to find yourself in Twizel (a more affordable base for exploring Mt. Cook, doing a LOTR tour, etc), you should look no further than to book a night or two at the delightful Gladstone Cottage.
Your hosts Margaret and Peter (and dog Kharla) will give you a warm welcome (even if they aren't there, they'll write on the chalkboard for you) and drop off a scrumptious breakfast basket for the morning.
The cottage has wonderul leather couches and recliners in the modern living room, complete with DVD player, flat-screen TV and Sky cable. The comfy, cozy bedrooms sleep two people each and you even get a chance to do laundry in the spacious, heated-floor bathroom. The kitchen is full-equipped, making you feel inclined to go to the local (and new) Four Square grocery store and make your own food for a change.
Outside you have a quaint porch in which to relax with a bottle of wine and watch the sun set over the nearby Ben Ohau mountain ranges. And once it gets dark, be sure to go for a wander on the grass - the nightsky is Mackenzie Country is famous for its clarity. Indeed, I swear I've never seen so many stars in my whole life.
If you get tired of cooking but don't want to stretch your wallet anymore than you have to, the Thai restuarant in Twizel's "mall" has an amazing lunch menu where any of their scrumptious and authentic meals are $10 or less. Be sure to order a quenching Singha beer to go along with it!
Margaret and Peter Hands
32 North West Arch
PO Box 72
+64 3 435 0527
$140 per night