Methven, the closest town to New Zealand's famous Mount Hutt has a lot on offer. As the base town of a winter wonderland expect the after hours socialising just as you would in Queenstown but with quite a few less bars. More importantly, hold on you your hats! When some of Flight Centre's team visited a couple of months ago Methven definitely gave them more than they bargained for.
After an approximate one hour drive from Christchurch we arrived in Methven and straight away set off on a Lord of the Rings tour. The tour was absolutely loved by the Lord of the Rings fans and the convenient service picked us up and dropped us off at our accommodation which was Ski Time Villas.
I was extremely impressed with Ski Time Villas. It had the traditional Ski Lodge vibe in the main guest house with lots of wood fires downstairs in the restaurant, bar and lounge areas. We were certainly quick to relax! New, spacious, trendy villas were also on offer in addition to hotel style guest rooms.
We enjoyed a delicious dinner at Ski Time Villas, the options on the menu were warm, hearty and homely with an obvious gourmet NZ influence. I could have sat in that restaurant every night for the entire winter and not got bored. The atmosphere was so warm, welcoming and cosy.
As all good things must come to an end we thought it was time to see what the sleepy town of Methven had on offer. We took the short walk from the lodge to the famous – or infamous Blue Pub. This is where things got interesting, and not so charming, but a lot of fun. The pub was busy with locals and tourists alike. There was live music and the bar staff were a lot of fun. Some of the locals taught us some of the Māori language and provided us with a lot of entertainment from singing to rapping, acting and some of the best live comedy I have ever seen!
The atmosphere and bond of the small town leaves no question in my mind as to why so many people return each year to explore and enjoy the winter wonderland activities around area.
Methven is the closest town to Mt Hutt and has six of Canterbury's ski fields within close range. For those with a bit more game, you will find some of the world best helisking close to Methven.