• During the World Tour,  New Zealand,  Oceania,  TDM,  Tips

    Opinions on Spaceships Beta S2 (New Zealand): Mini-van rental for 2 people

    On the occasion of a colleague’s imminent departure for New Zealand, I reread my own articles about this beautiful country and realize that I forgot to write a review on Spaceships, the company where we rented a van for 24 days Note: I take this opportunity to tell you that this article completes our guide about New Zealand: 27 days in New Zealand: itinerary, guide and budget and I have also added the photos for all the articles about New Zealand Background We visited New Zealand during our first world tour in November 2016. In 27 days, we criss-crossed the country (South Island + North Island) aboard our van rented…

  • New Zealand,  Oceania,  TDM,  Travel Journal

    Orewa, Karekare, Piha and Auckland (New Zealand): last days in the land of kiwis

    After the visit to Cathedral Cove, we spend long hours on the road to come to Orewa where we spend the night in a Top 10 campsite. It rains a little in the evening but the weather is splendid the next morning. JB jogs on the long beach next to the campsite (Orewa Beach). It is also one of the favorite beaches of the “Aucklanders”, or “jafa” = jargon to say “Just another fucking Aucklander”. When you live in the 2nd most pleasant city in the world, well, it attracts jealousies Part 1: Travel Diaries Waiwera Thermal Resort & Spa If we flee Auckland it is to enjoy the last…

  • Country Guides,  New Zealand,  Oceania,  TDM,  Tips

    Road Trip New Zealand in 27 days: Itinerary, Travel Guide and Budget

    This article gives you our detailed 27-day itinerary to show you that it is possible to visit all the must-see places in the NZ in less than a month. For a brief description (and photos) of the cities visited, I invite you to consult the itineraries made by the pros of the NZ, Kiwipal as this article is already quite long. We took inspiration from these itineraries(even if they are unfortunately poor in terms of travel time estimation) to establish our own. We started our journey in Christchurch and ended up in Auckland (the van rental is cheaper in that direction). The total journey by car is 5500km, the equivalent…

  • New Zealand,  Oceania,  TDM,  Travel Journal

    Hot Water Beach, Cathedral Cove (New Zealand): nice if you have some time

    Not very far from Hobbiton Movie Set (1h30), it is Hot Water Beach that we visit this afternoon. It’s a dangerous beach (if we swim) but fun if we just make a hole in the sand and sit in it to enjoy the hot thermal water Part 1: Travel Diaries Hot Water Beach Nobody tells us concretely how it works until we read the sign near the parking lot. There are 2 springs (2 holes of 10cm that we can only notice, from which a burning water spouts out). It is necessary to dig a hole in the sand certainly, but also a system of viaduct to make enter a…

  • New Zealand,  Oceania,  TDM,  Travel Journal

    Hobbiton Movie Set (New Zealand): a dream come true

    From Waitomo, we drive to Hobbiton Movie Set and sleep in a campsite next door. If we first visit Waitomo and Hobbiton before going to Coromandel, it’s because the weather forecast indicates that there is more chance of good weather if we go to Hobbiton right away (the shortest way would be, from Rotorua, to go first to Coromandel and then Waitomo) Visiting Hobbiton in the rain? Never of the life! If you’re not a fan of The Lord of the Rings, forget about this article, as it will focus “oh” and “ah” on the beauty of the location, the attention to detail and anecdotes that only those who have…

  • New Zealand,  Oceania,  TDM,  Travel Journal

    Waitomo Glowworm Caves (New Zealand): thousands of glowworms

    From Rotorua, we make a big detour to Waitomo Caves which is only 1h30 away. This route isn’t at all optimal, but I will explain it later in the article about Hobbiton Part 1: Travel Diary The information offices of private companies appear before the i-center information office. The prices are the same, but the interest of going to the real i-center is to choose among all the activities offered in the area. Visiting a cellar, two caves, caving or boating etc We choose the most popular activity: Waitomo Glowworm Cave with boat tour at the end. With 2000 visitors per day in the summer, reservation is necessary, but this…

  • New Zealand,  Oceania,  TDM,  Travel Journal

    Tongarino, Lake Taupo, Huka Falls and Rotorua (New Zealand)

    Following the earthquake, we are moving away from the coast, even though the tsunami warning has been withdrawn for the North Island, except for Wellington. In the 24 hours following the midnight earthquake, about 50 aftershocks were felt throughout the country. It shakes so often that even when it doesn’t move, it feels like it’s moving. Either I am hyper sensitive or the tremor has traumatized me Tongarino National Park The road to Tongarino National Park is very long (4h to 4h30). We make a stop at Palmerston North to take a good hot shower at the i-center (we think to sleep in a rotten camp without shower in the…

  • New Zealand,  Oceania,  TDM,  Travel Journal

    Wellington, Kaitoke and the earthquake (New Zealand)

    The ferry trip is going really well even if I got seasick at one point because of strong waves. It seems to be common, there are bags for sick travelers available everywhere. We went to the terminal at 9am and are still among the last to board for a departure at 10:45am As we were way ahead of schedule (I had misjudged the time spent on Moeraki Boulders, Dunedin and Punakaiki) we decided to go a little slower. Mine of nothing, in 15 days, we have already done 3500km Wellington The capital of New Zealand deserves 1 day and a half of our time. It is the second place in…

  • New Zealand,  Oceania,  TDM,  Travel Journal

    Hokitika, Punakaiki, Abel Tasman and Picton (New Zealand): What to do when it rains?

    It was a difficult night, with a siren calling the city fire department, sounding several times. The alarm clock has another surprise in store for us: torrential rain is falling on central New Zealand for several days. All the other vans seem to have the same problem as us, so that instead of leaving at 10 am (the standard time of the check-out), everyone leaves around 10h30 at the earliest The road we took the day before (between Haast and Fox Glacier) is closed due to earth flows until further notice. We can at least console ourselves by saying that at least, we will not be blocked and will be…

  • New Zealand,  Oceania,  TDM,  Travel Journal

    Fox Glacier and Franz Josef Glacier (New Zealand)

    We leave Haast not without difficulty because it rains, it rains, and the campsite in Haast is so cosy that we want to stay there for an eternity. The road to the glaciers is rather difficult with 180 degree turns and some work, forcing drivers to wait up to 10 minutes Part 1: Travel Diaries Having seen disappointing pictures of the Fox Glacier (covered with dust from the mountains), we decide to see it only from far away. For that, we take the road to Lake Matheson, pass it by 2-3km, on the left, we will have the view on the whole glacier That is, if the weather is good.…