There are many reasons to visit Wanaka: the incredible mountains, super friendly locals and photogenic trees to name just a few. But the optical illusion attraction Puzzlingworld? I don’t know how many people would have it on their list, but if you don’t then you’re mad. It is just so much fun. My other half still remembers going there as a child – it’s been open for 40 years – and it’s just one of those real Kiwi things to do.
After an insanely good morning flying over the southern alps and getting to claim our very own piece of mountain (for a few minutes anyway) most people would admit defeat. There’s no way you could top that, right?
As if Wanaka needed to give me another reason to love it. Call me a child, but a house crammed full of optical illusions with a huge maze for a garden is the most fun you can have with your wooly hat on. Even if I did actually have to con a child in to playing with me in some of the illusions, which I think you’ll agree only added to the potential humour of the situation.
We played pool where the balls rolled up the table, walked through rooms where endless eyes followed our footsteps, and hurt our brains trying to solve riddles. The only downside was that we hadn’t allocated enough time to wander around Puzzlingworld twice.
^^^The toilets aren’t up to much though…
^^^I found the TARDIS you guys
Next up? The maze, which I’d been warned would drive me insane after twenty minutes of hitting dead ends. A warning which I naturally ignored as I pushed children out of the way in order to get a head start.
The aim of the maze is to find your way to each of the four corner towers in turn, and then eventually back to the exit. What I hadn’t banked on was the evil genius of the mazes’ planning team. More than once I thought we were nearing victory only to find a decoy corner, whereupon I restrained my emotions to merely falling down and screaming at the sky. Quite the underreaction.
After some fairly mild cheating (what? We didn’t want to die in there) it was time to wave goodbye to Puzzlingworld. Pausing only to get a suitably mature photograph in front of the leaning tower of Wanaka. Naturally.
At only $20 for entry to the maze and illusion rooms (that lasts for the whole day) it’s an inexpensive way to spend some time in Wanaka. So next time you’re in the area get yourselves over to Puzzlingworld, it’s totally a-maze-ing! (sorry)