When we first arrived in New Zealand we were a little bit shocked by two things; the prices and weather. Traveling through hot and very cheap countries for almost two months got us used to low prices and light clothing. So the first thing we did in New Zealand? We went to shop some warm sweaters and jackets. All in all though, the beautiful nature managed to balance out our negative thoughts we had at first and let us have an incredible stay in New Zealand.
New Zealand itself is a beautiful country. Very green, very organized, it almost felt like Switzerland to me.We had three weeks to explore as much as possible of New Zealand, but we did decide on only doing the Northern part, due to time management and also ferry prices (for the time we wanted to cross, the price were around 500 USD). Nevertheless, it was absolutely great and we still did quiet an amount of driving; 2500 km to be exact!
We started in Auckland and drove on our third day to the Hot Water Beach. Due to thermal activities all over New Zealand, there are various of spots for you to relax in the natural hot tubs. The difference at Hot Water Beach to other beaches is, you get to dig your own little hot tub, when the tide is low. A very nice place, just make sure that you arrive there on the right time, not like us 4 hours before low tide, to get the most out of this experience.
Continuing our route on the east side of the northern island, we arrived in Rotorua. If you just have a few days to explore New Zealand you should definitely make this city your hotspot on the Northern Island. Maori Experiences, Outdoor Activities and Thermal Spa’s; you basically have it all. After spending a couple of days and most of our money there, we contiued our journey all the way down to Wellington. This beautiful harbour city is a must see, not only for its scenery but also for its gianormous national museum all about the two islands.
Travelling up on th west coast of the northern island was just as magnificient as travelling down on the east coast. Mile after mile of green lands and mesmerizing sceneries. Speaking of which, of course we had to stop at the world famous film set in Matamata of Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit. Even though I am not a huge fan of those kinds of movies, we did watch them all travelling through New Zealand and you kind of get in that mood.
Another hotspot just around the corner are the Glowworm Caves. That’s something you should definitely try out when you are there. 3 hours of black water tubing in the caves that are covered in glow worms. You can even explore some of the caves by yourself, I would recommend you doing it around midnight, it gives the whole thing something magical and frightening.
We continued all the way up to the Cape Reigna, a beautiful and very, very calm spot. After such a long travel and so much driving (we didnt know that Australia is going to be 3 times as much driving) we were happy amd releaved to finally calm down and relax.