One Lane Bridge From Cape Reinga to Bluff: Driving in New Zealand

There are so many bends in the New Zealand’s roads, that the roads are much, much longer than they seems on the map. So many bends, that you forget how it is to drive on a straight road. That’s exaggerating things a little but I guess you get my point. It means: plan much more…

A Rare Sight Mt Cook / Aoraki, South Island, New Zealand

New Zealand’s highest mountain, Mt Cook / Aoraki, is usually hidden in clouds. Everyone, including the Lonely Planet, told us not to get our hopes up and be prepared for clouds. Driving to Mt Cook Practically since the day we arrived on the South Island, we observed the weather forecast for Mt Cook and it…

Beaches, Lookouts, and (no) Albatrosses Otago Peninsula, South Island, New Zealand

The rugged, steep Otago Peninsula is one of the only few peninsulas on the South Island’s east coast. Although right in front of the city of Dunedin and easily accessible, the peninsula – probably due to its hilly terrain – is only lightly populated. Driving is on narrow roads, along steep hills, and around impossibly…

Waterfalls and Paua Shells The Catlins, South Island, New Zealand

Not too many travelers go further south than Te Anau and Milford Sound. Those who do, however, and travel between Invercargill and Dunedin, have the possibility to take the scenic route through the Catlins and are rewarded with amazing beaches, stunning waterfalls, and beautiful scenery. And lots of gravel roads, yes, that too. The southernmost…

The Icing on the (Carrot) Cake Milford Sound, South Island, New Zealand

Another must-do in New Zealand, apart from a visit to a glow worm cave, (and to the west coast), is a cruise on Milford Sound. Getting to Milford Sound Although Milford Sound is the most accessible sound in the South Island’s Fiordlands,  it’s still a long way from anywhere. The drive from the closest town,…

The Glacier or What’s Left of It Franz Josef Glacier, Lake Matheson, Haast Pass. South Island, New Zealand

Franz Josef glacier on the South Island’s west coast is about 12 km long. Once, it reached the Tasman sea; today, it finishes about 19 km from the ocean. Franz Josef Glacier It’s more than 10’000 years ago that the glacier reached the ocean. It’s not so long ago however, when the viewing point, that…

Go West Coast Wharariki Beach, Westport, Punakaiki. South Island, New Zealand

After crossing to the South Island by ferry – a wonderful journey across the Cook Strait and through Queen Charlotte Sound – we drove along the South Island’s north coast all the way to the beginning of the Farewell Spit at the northern end of Golden Bay. Wharariki Beach The spit can only be visited…

It’s a Kind of Magic Waitomo Caves, North Island, New Zealand

I’d say a visit to New Zealand isn’t complete without a visit to at least one glow worm cave. The New Zealand glow worm lives in wet caves or humid and sheltered places in the forest. The larvae emit a light in order to attract prey. They can be seen all over New Zealand but…

Hiker’s Highway Tongariro Alpine Crossing, North Island, New Zealand

New Zealand is a hiker’s paradise. With hikes from five minutes to five (or more) days, there’s something for everybody. One of the most well-known day hikes is the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, an almost 20km hike across volcanic terrain.  It’s so popular, that in summer up to 1000 people a day walk the track. If…

Pools of Mud and Champagne Rotorua, North Island, New Zealand

Rotorua is also known as “Rotten-rua” because of the smell of rotten eggs that hangs over the city. It’s not that there’d be too many chickens and people couldn’t eat all the eggs fast enough, it’s because Rotorua lies in New Zealand’s most active thermal area and it’s the smell of sulfur rising from the…

The Land of Giant Trees and Dunes Bay of Islands, Cape Reinga, Kauri Coast. Northland, New Zealand

New Zealand’s South Island may be more beautiful than the North Island (according to most travelers), but the North Island has some stunning scenery too. Bay of Islands A few hours drive north of Auckland, on the east coast, is the Bay of Islands. A bay with many islands, that simple. It’s a major tourist…

Always on Fiji Time The Yasawas, Fiji

What comes to mind when you hear “South Pacific”? Beach? Turquoise water? Snorkeling? Island hopping? Probably yes. Don’t we all dream the island dream..? The Yasawas and how to get there While dreaming is free, making dreams reality isn’t. It’s actually pretty expensive, especially in Fiji. But you cannot go to Fiji and not go…