I am in New Zealand!!! So if you have been following the blog for a while, you will know that New Zealand was my first stop when I left the UK back in January 2016. When I first stepped foot in New Zealand 11 months ago, I had no idea that I would return to this beautiful land of green hills, stunning views, friendly people and sheep sheep sheep.
But here I am! Embarking on a 3 week road trip aboard a camper van. On my last trip I was on the Kiwi Experience Bus and having purchased the ‘Whole Kit & Caboodle’ pass, I travelled the entire North & South Island for a period of 5 weeks. For details of that trip you can read about it HERE and watch a review video HERE.
WHY COME BECK TO NEW ZEALAND?
I met someone in Australia and we decided to travel together for the upcoming months. As a result compromises had to be made to ensure we were both happy with our travel plans. My new travel buddy and partner in crime had not been to New Zealand before and I didn’t have to be asked twice to tag along on a trip back to this stunning part of the world.
Additionally, I had a great time on the big green bus last time I came to New Zealand, however, this country is so naturally beautiful that I didn’t like being restricted to the preplanned stops that the Kiwi Experience offers. Throughout the long drives from one stop to the next, I remember wishing on multiple occasions, that I could pull up on the side of the road and explore the hidden nooks and crannies off the beaten track…so this time round, I am hoping that my wish will come true!
We have 3 weeks to travel through the North and South Island. We are flying into Auckland (North Island) on the 4th November 2016 and flying out of Christchurch (South Island) on the 23rd November 2016. We plan to make the following stops along the way:
Auckland > Rotorua > Taupo + Tongariro National Park > Wellington > Picton > Nelson Lakes National Park > Franz Josef > Queenstown > Milford Sound > Tekapo > Kaikoura > Christchurch.
We will be stopping in various smaller towns along the way to break up the drives and do walks and activities but we are trying to keep the drives flexible and spontaneous. We have also downloaded Wikicamps which is an amazing app showing the location of both free & paid campsites, their facilities and users reviews. It is a paid app, but definitely worth having if like us you are planning to sleep in your camper van, car or tent.
Alfred is our camper van. We rented Alfred, from the 4th November to the 22nd November.
Pick up location: Auckland
Drop off Location: Christchurch
It is a pretty battered old camper, with a lot of miles but it drives really smoothly and we are totally in love with it already. It comes with a fold out double bed (which is surprisingly super comfortable) a gas cooker, a sink and cooking utensils needed for 2 people. We also opted for a ‘Sleeping Pack’ add on which included a duvet, two pillow covers & two towels for a cost of $10.
For peace of mind and convenience, we decided to pre-purchase an open ended ticket for the ferry from Wellington to Picton through the rental company. So the total cost paid was $1366 (Plus a deposit of $144 paid online when we pre-booked the camper van).
I am so excited to be back in New Zealand, I have very fond memories of this place and I hope to make many more in the next 3 weeks. As always I will document as much of the trip as I can, in the hope that sharing my adventures with you guys will help you plan your own exciting trips.
So make sure to sign up to the blog, comment, like and share. It makes me so happy to know that there are people at the end of another screen reading the blog :)
Speak to you soon my lovelies