Google Earth is among the best of these – being able to actually look at the places you will stay or attractions you might want to visit is pretty cool, but also gives you some idea of the important things – like how far from the car park to the base of the glacier. This is an important fact because you’ll then know exactly how long you 5-year old might potentially complain for until that big lump of ice takes his breath away.
Also, which days is Mrs Grendel most likely to want to take a motion sickness pill prior to heading out onto the open road. By ‘open’ I mean the goat track crawling up the mountain with switchbacks that practically hang out over a seemingly endless plummet to the rocks below.
I’ve even managed to figure out where the nearest supermarkets and shopping centres are located – no small thing in itself.
I’m still looking for that map of toilets though!
Mount Cook as seen on Google Earth - yup, that's a mountain alright