Posted by: gardner310 | January 4, 2015

Kiwi Magic

Mt. Cook on a clear day

Mt. Cook on a clear day

Michael and I just returned from a 3 week campervan vacation in New Zealand.  It’s a place we’ve been wanting to visit so we took advantage of me ending my ship contract in Sydney and flew to Christchurch to pick up our van.  We reserved an Alpha Plus van which actually slept 4 because I had extra luggage to store so the thing was huge, much larger than I expected. The challenge was driving it in the mountains on all of the gorgeous switchbacks – testy at times.  It turned out to be very comfortable with plenty of room and totally self-contained so we could camp anywhere.  New Zealand has what is called Freedom Camping where you can just pull into lots or just off the road overnight as long as you are self-contained.  That plus the many holiday camps available provided our lodging and power for the vacation.

This country is the most beautiful country I’ve visited.  It’s small, population of the nation is less than the population in Chicago where I live.  That leaves a lot of open land for mountains, valleys, lakes, farms and sheep and cattle.  Given that the country is two islands it has an enormous coastline that provides stunning beach vistas from where you drive inland to the Southern Alps and the amazing views of glaciers and lakes.  Outdoor activity is the main focus and the Department of Conservation maintains amazing tracks (trails) that are well maintained and signposted.  Name it – hiking, skiing, river rafting, speed boating, helicopters over mountains, Milford sound cruising, kayaking,climbing, bungy jumping.  It is a photographer’s dream destination.

Given that I have a zillion photos I will post a few at a time so as not to bore you.  If New Zealand is not on your list, I’d recommend adding it and go as soon as you can.  Nobody doesn’t like New Zealand:)

_DSC8213 Mt Cook from Lake Pukaki


  1. Great pics.

  2. NZ is so easy to explore, and a campervan is the best way to do it

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