Monday, 19 February 2018

Roadmap - North and South islands

Departure time is getting close and the last details of places to visit are finalized. For 45 days, we are going to split our time between North and South islands. We've planned to go on hikes in forest, mountains, in the lowlands as well as near the cost. New-Zealand is also well known for extreme sports activities like sky-diving, rafting, canyoning... Let's have a look at our roadmap.

First Part - North island 'Te Ika-a-Maui'

We plan to arrive on February 21st in Auckland after 15h flight through Bangkok in Thailand. The first two days will be spent visiting Auckland before getting our hands on the car that will follow us for the rest of our trip.
Mainly, New-Zealand is made of beautiful landscapes. Many national and regional parks are to visit.
Below, the places we are planning on visiting with the main activities. Visiting caves, Canope Zipline, hiking and! for the fans of Lord of The Rings, visiting Hobbiton. 


DatePlaceMain activity
121/02 to 22/02Auckland-> Museum, Otara market, Art gallery, Town hall
-> Hiking Mt Eden (200m)  and One tree hill
223/02Waitakere Ranges Regional park-> Hiking, view point, waterfalls
324/02 to 25/02Coromandel Peninsula-> Hiking, view point, Hot water beach, rocks formation
426/02Hobbiton Area-> Hobbiton
-> Hiking
527/02 to 28/02Rotorua-> Zorbing - Hamster ball
-> Canope Zipline
-> Wai O Tapu Parc - geysers et hot springs
-> Maori experience
-> Hiking
701/03 to 02/03Turangi / Tongario-> Tongario Alpine crossing - 1Day hike
-> Waterfall
803/3 to 04/03Waitomo Area-> Caves
-> Hiking and waterfalls
905/03Waitara / Taranaki-> Hiking, view point, waterfalls
1005/03 - 08/03Egmont National Park / Taranaki-> Hiking and waterfalls
1209/03Down to Wellington region-> Rocks formations
-> Kaitoke (Lord of the rings landscape - Rivendell)
1310/03 - 11/03Wellington-> Museum, parlement, Cuba street art
-> Hiking
-> The Weta Cave (special effect stufio, lord of the rings)
1412/03Wellington region-> Putangirua Pinnacles (2h drive from Wellington - 100km)

North Island with spots to visit - click to enlarge

From Wellington, we will take the ferry to get to the South island in Picton.

Second Part - South island 'Te Wai Pounamu'

From his Maori's name 'Te Wai Pounamu' that means "the green stones rivers", the west cost of the highland is mainly mountains with the highest summit of New-Zealand - Mount Cook with 3,724 m. We are planning on doing a lot of hiking with sky-diving, kayak and rafting as a bonus. 


DatePlaceMain activity
113/03Picton-> Hiking and view point
214/03Nelson-> Artist village, church, art gallery, gardens
315/03Abel Tasman Area-> Kayak
416/03Hokitika and aeas-> Gorges, hiking, rocks formations
517/03Franz Glacier-> Hiking and view point
618/03 to 19/03Fox Glacier-> Hiking and view point
720/03 to 21/03Lake Wanaka-> Sy diving
-> Hiking 
822/03 to 24/03Queenstown-> garden, mall, Queenstown Arts & Crafts Market
-> Hiking
925/03 to 30/03Firodland National Park-> Kepler track 3-4 days
-> Hiking and view point
1031/03Mount Cook Area-> Hiking and view point
1101/04Lake Tekapo-> Church Sheperd
-> Hike to observatory
1202/04RangitataRangitata River Rafting
1303/04Mount Somers-> Mount Somers (LOR)
144/04 to endChristchurch-> Cathedral
-> Art gallery
-> Brockworth street art
-> Bridle path walk OR Gondola
-> Botanic garden + museum canterbury
South island with spots to visit

Our return flight is planned from Christchurch on April 7th via Singapore and Manila before getting back to Taipei. We will be sharing pictures and articles along the way, so make sure to follow our Facebook page Backpackgeeks, and subscribe to the Newsletter to receive the latest article out there. 

Friday, 16 February 2018

New-Zealand, here we go!

The year 2018 is going to be interesting and promise a lot of changes. After few years in Taiwan dedicated to our professional careers, it is time to take a break and get back on the road. New-Zealand is going to be our next destination for an epic road trip and enjoy the beautiful landscapes. 

Why New-Zealand? 

Since our three months spent in the Australian bush, New-Zealand has always been in our thoughts, especially mine. We heard from our friends, that spent a few months there, that New-Zealand is special and full of beauty. The landscapes are similar to the ones of Tasmania and it's worth giving it a try... Many years that the idea is going around my head and why not walking all around!  
However, New-Zealand is quite huge! Split in two main islands, North and South island, New-Zealand surface is about half of France with 270,000 km2. For my taiwanese friends, you can fit 7.5 times Taiwan into New Zealand.

Where is New-Zealand?

Located about 2,000 km from Australian coasts, New-Zealand is located in the South Pacific Ocean on the Southern hemisphere. This means that the seasons are reversed and that water turns in the opposite side in your sink! 



When? 

In few days! I couldn't write before to explain a bit more about the preparation of the trip. However most of the tasks are now organized. Just like we did for the preparation of the Australian road trip. Departure is planned for February 20th 2018.

In total, we will spend 45 days there to discover both of the main islands. To make travelling from point A to B easier, we are renting a car. Back then, when we travelled three months in Australia, the traveling time took us 15 days in total between train, bus and car - with the car it should be much faster.

What to visit in North Island

In term of accommodation, we've decided to camp for most of our nights there. That way we can be close to the nature and enjoy New-Zealand's unique landscapes.