45 Rankers Reviews
12 Lake Tekapo
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South Island ▷ Mount Cook - MacKenzie ▷ Lake Tekapo
Showing 8 reviews of 45.
The $5 entry charge at the bottom of the hill is well worth it. Stunning scenery particularly on a clear day. Nice cafe if you need a snack. Lots of pictures taken.
Carl von Horstig
Equipped with polar jackets and red light torches. We were brought up to the Mt John Observatory by bus. Amazing night sky viewed and explained by enthusiastic guides/researchers.
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Beautiful walk from the carpark besides Lake Tekapo. Ends at the Observatory. There is a possibility to watch stays in the night. The views from there are stunning. AstroCafe in the same area has good caves, coffee and reasonable prices.
We had clear sky making great viewing. Knowledgable and social guide. Sam Jupiter and 4 moons, Saturn and a number of mini galaxies etc. Better value if half the $95 price. Rug up!
You need to pay $5 for the road to the observatory. Well worth it. Incredible view from the top and good coffee. Take the spacey Cappucino!
Unethical Business & Bad Service
This was purchased as a Birthday Gift for me, from my partner and his parents; in December. We are Queenstown residents. Paid $290.00 full price for 2 people to go on the tour which includes Star Gazing. (kind of the whole point)
Unfortunately, even though the expiry date is noted on the Voucher, we didn't look at the expiry date and assumed this would be valid for 1 year as most GC are 1 Year. However Earth & Sky choose to make their expiry date only six months. We didn't realize until May that it was expiring at the end of May. We have full time jobs and commitments so I called and spoke with someone; asked if we could extend the voucher for a few months as we don't have very many opportunities to get out to Tekapo. (3.5 hours one way from Queenstown) She was quite rude and stated that the terms and conditions are clearly written on the voucher. Then reluctantly said she could only extend for one month. Unfortunately with only 1 month extension we had to change plans and make arrangements but we made it to Tekapo this past weekend; only to find that the weather had taken a turn and a storm was coming in.
It was terribly cold and windy and we were advised by staff there was 100% cloud cover; and that everyone could either go on the tour and have the "presentation" (in the cold crazy wind) without star gazing; or we could get a full refund (minus the booking fee of $20).
But this refund did not apply to us, as we have a Gift Voucher. (which we paid full price for.)
We were really disappointed that Star Gazing wasn't an option that night and really wanted the full experience since we've already paid $290.00.
i've since spoken with the Manager "Mili" and Admin Manager "Wendy" and they've both advised that they cannot extend the voucher any longer, and will not honor or refund the voucher. Wendy, she was quite rude saying "it's all there in the terms and conditions".
My partner called as well and Wendy hung up on him.
This was the only thing we did on our trip that we didn't check on rankers first, and we certainly paid for it! Disappointing to say the least. We we're very excited for this and to learn more about the stars. It was a pretty cold windy night (11 degree), the bus dropped us up the top of Cowan's observatory & our guide talked for about 15 mins abort the sky which we found interesting.... But freezing! We then had 3 telescopes among the 25 or so of us there to look at some stars, which honestly looked the same as with the naked eye, the sane magnification and wow small.... pretty unimpressive and for the rest of the 80 minutes that's was it. Honestly the star apps on your tablet can give you more info and be more interactive. If your visiting NZ I highly recommend the Antarctic center in Christchurch for an enjoyable 1/2 day for the whole family for $53 each online tickets - we loved it and learned so much compared to this which was $90 each and I feel it was a waste of money unfortunately.