Hi we are oldies and are going to NZ for 3 weeks any suggestions regarding getting a campervan or how to get around this country in 3 weeks. We are wanting to explore both north and south of NZ. Or would you suggest getting a car or even a greyhound bus like we are doing in Oz?
Help has anyone hired a campervan in NZ if so what are the pros and cons and would you suggest doing this?
Hi PJ and Mike,
3 weeks to cover the whole country is going to seem very rushed in my opinion - you could easily spend that amount in either the north or south island alone :-)
I'd recommend having your own transport for the sake of flexibility. Whether to go with campervan or car/motel etc would probably depend on the time of year. Which month are you going to be here?
Some links you mind find useful - let me know if you want car hire ones)
driving times calculator
[Edited: 2012 Oct 11 07:23 - Jo Trouble:16935 ]
I think it comes down to personal preference also. Note with Campervans they are a big target for thieves here unfortunately so never leave anything important in them. Also in the more tourist parts of the country it is more difficult to just park anywhere for the night as they will move you on so then you have the added expense of needing to stay in a campground and they aren't always the most central places. Maybe a car and a cheap tent would give you more versatility - camping, hostels, motels etc you could mix it up. A lot of the bigger campgrounds here have cabins too which are a cheap alternative. I hear from tourists and know from experience that we aren't a cheap country to travel so keep that in mind when working out how you want to see it.
I think you will also be rushed for 3 weeks so I suggest your own form of transport so you can move a little quicker around and see/target what you really really want to see. We are so far away from anything you will want to make sure you see as much as you can in case you don't get a chance to come back.
I would spend a 5-6 days maximum (less if you can) in the North Island and get yourself to the South Island. Things to see in the North Island - (google them and see what appeals most to you) - Bay of Islands, West Coast beaches just outside of Auckland (Piha, Karekare, Bethells - wild black sand beaches), Auckland, Rotorua (geothermal activity), Hawkes Bay Vineyards and Wellington. And the South Island... Abel Tasman, Queenstown / Arrowtown / Wanaka (that whole area really), Milford Sound, Kaikoura (whale watching), Franz Josef... Its all beautiful.
I am sure you have done your own research but should you want a more comprehensive list let me know. If you need me to do any research on car hire etc for for you that will be no problem and if i am free I would be happy to give you a whirlwind driving tour of Auckland so you could get yourself on the road quicker.
PS I have always found Apex Car Rentals the cheapest when touring here. Just check unlimited mileage and I suggest you pay the extra for no excess insurance.
Here is a site on campervan touring in NZ
Shelley - thanks so much for your advice it really seems sound advice with no bias which is brilliant. I may take you up on your offer of a whirlwind driving tour of Auckland will speak to my husband about it. We are off to Byron Bay today and getting wifi is a real pain in Auz - I have to keep making trips to McDonalds, ha ha
Another option is travelling with <Snip>. Their network is all across the North Island and their prices are very cheap.
[Edited: 2016 May 28 09:02 - traveltalesofawoollymammoth:258356 - No URL's please]