JetSet: New Zealand

This post, we’re taking you Down Under. Nope, not Australia. Go east and you’ll hit New Zealand – one of our favourite trips ever! When you think of this pair of islands (yep, it’s a pair of islands), you probably picture huge herds of sheep and Hobbits roaming the hills, but this stunning country
is so much more than that. New Zealand is home to some of the most beautiful scenery in the world: mountains, glaciers
and oceans, that offer some fantastic tourist attractions. With no lack of opportunities for adventure,
here are a few of the must-do’s while visiting
The Land of the Long White Cloud.

For a little bit of
Take in some culture in Rotorua and spend a night learning about the Maori, the first people to arrive in NZ. You can spend an evening at a
hangi, a traditional Maori dinner where the food is cooked underground. You can watch a show and embarrass yourself while learning to dance the haka, the traditional war dance of the Maori people.

A Maori “Hello”.
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For the sports lover:
Wellington is home to the Westpac Stadium. 
It’s a great spot to catch a cricket match and the atmosphere at the stadium is always intense and crazy. Hardcore fans don’t give a second thought
about spending eight hours or more watching a match. Be prepared to watch the sun go down while
the game is still in full swing. Obvious insert: lots of beer is flowing and the fans are rowdy! Or if you’re lucky enough to score tickets, watch the All Blacks 
in action, NZ’s world-famous rugby team. Make sure to get there plenty early – you don’t want to miss their intimidating performance of the haka, their routine before every game.

The mighty All-Blacks logo.
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For the brave:
Once you’ve crossed the Cook Strait via ferry and have arrived
on the South Island, you need to get yourself to Queenstown, the world’s adventure
capital; basically a thrill seeker’s dream come true. If you’re more on the tame side,
you will either want to rustle up some courage, or find a nice spot to watch from
the sidelines. This beautiful city will
have you strategically timing your meals, because there’s no lack of attractions
here that won’t make you lose your lunch.

Crossing the Cook Strait.
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Queenstown is the home of the world’s very first bungee jump and offers
some crazy adventures like the
Nevis Bungee (134 metres high) and the Nevis Canyon Swing, the world’s tallest swing.

Gorgeous Queenstown.
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you’re not a fan of potentially plummeting to your death, you can go whitewater
rafting in the Shotover River. A wickedly fun time that will have you laughing
so hard it will take a bit of the edge off the fear.
Zorbing is a little less risky but just as fun. Basically, you jump into a huge plastic ball
filled with water and you roll down a hill. 
Yes, we know it sounds kinda odd, but it’s totally awesome!

The Zorb. Look how fun that is.
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For the athlete: If
you’ve been going to the gym on the regular, a climb up Franz Josef Glacier is
an awesome experience. During the climb,
you will definitely be questioning your fitness level and swearing under your
breath at the guide who tells you to hurry up. But once at the top, the view is worth the intense, literal pain in your butt.

Who woulda thought – a glacier in New Zealand?
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For the fantasy
 There is a cool Lord of the Rings tour (wink, wink Natalie), but the Waitomo Caves are pretty rad and fairly easily conquered if you
don’t mind the dark and the cold. This is a great option if you’re
not one who wants to see your life flash before your eyes. Here, you can go underground
to do some cave tubing and see the famous glow worms.

Yes – it actually looks like this.
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To escape: If you
want a laid back and beautiful experience, you need to head down to
Milford Sound and take an overnight cruise, where you can lie under the stars at night
and see some amazing wildlife during the day. You’ll see your share of dolphins, penguins and fur seals.

Above: Beautiful Milford Sound

Below: Teeny penguins, just hangin’ out

If you ever get the chance to head to this breathtaking country, take it. You’ll leave with some amazing experiences and maybe a
couple of bruises, but you could discover your inner dare-devil and your weakness
for a great accent.

Rave: Our All Time Favourite Movies

With the memories of TIFF ’12 fresh in our minds, the office is still buzzing with
celebrity gossip and movie chat, which got us talking about our all-time
favourite movies. Turns out that here on
the fourth floor, we all love a good chick-flick, but like to balance it out with a good comedy or classic ’90s flicks every so often. 

Here’s a list of our favourite
movies of all time which we feel are “must-sees.”  

Disclaimer: We’re not saying these were the best-written, best-directed or best-acted films we’ve EVER seen – just feel-good ones we’ve watched over and over because they make us feel good, spark our imaginations and let us escape to another world once in a while.

As if we even need to explain this choice! Clueless is the ultimate high-school chick
movie that had us all dreaming of Cher’s luxurious life. Who wouldn’t want a sunny L.A. lifestyle, your own brand new Jeep to practice driving and all of the purple clogs you can
squeeze your feet into? And seriously,
who doesn’t like a great makeover scene? Best part of a chick flick, always.

We’re suckers for a good romance and this one might top them all. Maybe some of us are lacking a bit of romance
in our lives, but despite that, The Notebook ranks as one of our top choices
because of its combination of real-world struggles and a love that’s deeper
than infatuation. And there’s nothing quite like a little Gos.
Eye candy. You’re welcome!

This movie is one of the best of Paul Rudd’s, one of our fave funny men of recent years (coincidence that he’s also in Clueless? Hardly. He’s become a sign of a great comedy). This movie makes us laugh to the point of tears, and makes us cringe from his
character’s sheer awkwardness. One of
the most quote-able movies we could come up with and could watch again and
again. Schlappa da bass…..

We are putting these two together simply because they both
made our list for the same reason: we love a little magic and fantasy every
once in a while (some of us a little more than others). These movies – all 11
of them – combine beautiful imagery and creative stories that capture our
attention so that we can watch for hours at a time. We may have done this more than once. Believe what you want. 😉

Who doesn’t like a little bit of teenage drama and
scandal? We couldn’t resist adding one
of our favourite flicks from 
high school to the list. It was awesome back then and it’s even more
awesome now to look back and shake our heads at what we thought was a
life-altering script. We also can’t
forget that this was the beginning of Reese Witherspoon and Ryan Phillippe’s
real life romance. (It doesn’t matter
how that turned out.)

And now for the ultimate in chick flicks. We couldn’t leave this one

Young Patrick Swayze as eye candy, Jennifer Grey’s endearing
portrayal of Baby (pre-nose job, how we prefer her), the dancing, the music, the dresses, the shoes, the dancing… what’s not
to love? We don’t even need to go on.