Starting Point: Wanaka
Ending Point: Wanaka
Kilometers traveled: 31 (plus about 5 km in the maze at Puzzling World)
Posted a day late due to connectivity issues.
We woke up to grey this morning. What was nice about it was that we are staying here in Wanaka tonight so this morning was a lazy one for us. We dawdled around, made a huge breakfast, and then checked email and figured out what we wanted to do today. Since it was gloomy and looked like rain, we decided to stay in town and go to Puzzling World.
Puzzling World is a popular attraction in Wanaka featuring puzzles, illusions, and mazes. They claim to “lead the world in puzzling eccentricity” and they deliver. First up we tried the 3D Great Maze. This is not your typical maze. It requires you to visit each of the 4 towers at its corners and then get back to the entrance. We started off with arrogant high hopes to complete it quickly and we did find the first tower fairly early on….but then we got trapped in the mazes innumerable dead ends and wandered in circles and up and down stairs and back and forth for the better part of an hour before we had completed the challenge (visiting all 4 towers in order) and finally made it back to the entrance.
After that, we needed a snack so we headed out to the Spaceship for a picnic lunch. And then, with our brains and our feet rested, we headed back in to tackle the illusions inside.
We saw some really unique, twisted, strange, and always cool holograms. And loads of fun perspective drawings and murals. Then we entered the Hall of Following Faces, where 168 famous faces (Mother Teresa, Mandela, Van Gogh, Beethoven, Einstein, & Lincoln) seem to follow you around the room wherever you go. And it’s not just their eyes that follow you. Their entire heads appear to turn to watch you as you move around the room. Creepy but cool.
After being creeped out, we headed over to the Ames Perspective room. The room is totally distorted, but, when viewed from outside looks like a normal room. This technique has been used in many movies to make people look much larger or much smaller than they really are. It was fun to be a giant one minute and really small the next.
With our perspectives already a bit out of whack, we entered the Tilted House. The house is tilted at a 15 degree angle, but all the displays inside are normal (not tilted 15 degrees). The illusion is so strong that your brain tells you that it cannot be tilted and that everything else in there is out of whack. If you have balance issues, this is a fun one. We watched water roll uphill and all other cool sorts of illusions. Super fun FUN HOUSE!
After that we were done. We headed over to the puzzle cafe to do a bunch of puzzles. It was great fun and we had an awesome time. We would definitely recommend Puzzling World. We spent well over 3 hours there.
It was raining when we left, so we headed to the grocery store for a few supplies, and then settled in back at our holiday park for a movie marathon with the free dvd rentals from the main office. We watched I, Robot and Minority Report, then cooked a bit of dinner and are now settled in listening to the rain. In the morning we’ll head further south to Queenstown.