NEW ZEALAND, North, South & Stewart Islands
NOTE all words in ITALICS were written on the trip.
HISTORY Arrive 10/12/2007 for 4 months including Xmas & New Year on the beach initially staying in the Greenlane Motel 7 nights 10/12/2007 onwards whilst we select a camper van. The best we have seen so far is a 4 berth Maui with a buy-back option on it....either you sell it privately or they take it back at a reduced price when we arrive in Christchurch
HIGHLIGHTS Too many but if we are forced to limit them Having the Boys and Phoenix over, Tongarira National Park, Akatarawa rd, Coromandel Peninsular, East Cape oh and trip on Vince & Greg's boat in Auckland Harbour with Phoenix
LOWLIGHTS hardly any but 2 days rain in nearly 2 months, oh and the latest Nick Cage movie
HIGHLIGHTS Again too many but Milford Sound, Mt Cook Nat Park, Queenstown, Stewart Island, Queen Charlotte Drive, Southern Alps & Glaciers, Our 30th Wedding Anniversary, Dunedin, the Weather (best summer / autumn for 10 years), Paul Henry (journalist) & oh the Poms beating the Blackcaps at Test Cricket
LOWLIGHTS Having to leave and some Kiwi drivers
CONTACT Our Kiwi mobile number was +642102226963
Most remember being with Doug,Craig & Phoenix, Boysenberry, wine, Sav Blanc,Mount Ruepehi,Havelock North, Te Mata, lovely Kiwi people, sunshine,warmth,bubbling hot spings, huka falls jet and a generally great time which meant we just had to go back in 2013. Reviewing the history we didn't buy a motorhome, far to expensive @ £76k and risky re selling it on at the end. We hired cars and bought camping gear instead which we sold onto an english couple at the end of the holiday. They lived just outside Christchurch. The nick cage movie was National Treasure. Best summer exceeded when we returned in 2013. Kiwi drivers are not that bad, no probs in 2013. We love the place even more now having been back for a second time.
Summary: NEW ZEALAND 118 days , Day 46-163, 10/12/2007 - 5/4/2008
Day 46 - Monday 10th December 2007,Travel from Tonga to Auckland, NZ and onto Greenlane Motor Inn, Remuera
Storms mostly subsided (Hooray) Sunshine again and whilst windy nothing like Sunday. We knew we could fly off the island. Got up about 7 washed, showered and breakfasted. Did final packing. Ordered taxi ($TOP30 to airport) Said goodbye to Silva who said Robina was in the bath so we passed on our regards Left caught flight to NZ . Arrived 2.15 15 mins early and somewhat bumpy in places, mostly due to tail end effects of Daman Booked into Greenlane Motor Inn after taking shared shuttle bus with Brazilians and a Scottish lady whose husband worked as a miner in New Caledonia (Noumea). Amazed at Tonga International airport with its usual Tongan organization. Check in (for us luckily only 2 hrs early) had to pay $TOP25 each departure tax then made to wait standing up for at least 30 mins as scanner staff hadn’t arrived for work yet. Still our Air NZ flight did depart on time, unlike the Sydney Pacific Blue flight which hadn’t even arrived in Tonga until 30 mins after it was due to leave. We left at 11.30 am half full. It was a return flight from Auckland so understand most of the Tongans would never afford such. Had warm cheese and ham sandwich with salad and strange coconut thing but A&I had the wine, First we have done really apart from the Air Pacific flight from Fiji to Samoa. Met Vaughan and Greg Proprieters (really nice friendly gay couple, just so so helpful) Indeed they were very good friends by end of hols and took us and Phoenix out on their boat. Excellent room $85NZ (approx £34 a night) so good we have extended now until 20/12 so the boys can get a bed when they arrive.Shops: went to Foodtown, Fruit world, Chinese bread shop, Hot Roast shop etc Were gobsmacked at number of things we have never seen in our lives before, especially fruits. Will ask Phoenix what some of them are. Got hot Hoysin chicken, fresh bread and fruit for our T as well as some staples. Had great feast. Tummies a bit rumbly after that but Keef seems to be finally working thru his aversion to Tonga stomach wise. Its not been a gr8 time but things can only get better .
To see more either look at the North & South Island Diaries or click here for the FULL DIARY of our GAP YEAR