Whilst summer in New Zealand is every travellers dream, don't discount travelling in winter as it can be just as magical and perfect for taking advantage of those cheaper airfare deals.
Whilst summer in New Zealand is every travellers dream, don't discount travelling in winter as it can be just as magical and perfect for taking advantage of those cheaper airfare deals. Probably the biggest advantage of travelling in Winter is that's it's cheaper. With off peak prices considerable savings can be made on hiring your Motorhome. Off peak pricing will also apply to Holiday Parks and Camping Grounds leaving more money for the fun stuff.
With less people traveling in winter, the roads are quieter and that lakefront spot you really wanted will probably be available. It's just a more relaxed time to travel meaning it's not so vital to book ahead so if you find yourself wanting to spend the extra day somewhere you probably can.
One of the thing's I love about New Zealand winters is those cold, crisp winter days where the sun shines bright and there is not a breath of wind in the air. New Zealand is home to some spectacular mountain ranges and in Winter the skiing is outstanding. One of the best holiday experiences we ever had was sledding down the mountainside at Mt Ruapehu with our kids on plastic rubbish bags and making snowballs to throw at each other. Simple inexpensive fun that can only be experienced in Winter. With a host of thermal pools around the country, Winter is the perfect time to soak up those minerals and warm up your travel weary bodies. I just can't go past a soak in The Hamner Springs Thermal Pools located in the picturesque Alpine Village of Hamner Springs where more often than not in Winter a sprinkle of snow manages to make the experience even more magical.
A must visit for me is Mt Cook Village where the cheeky kea will be happy to feed on your belongings and the alpine flowers blossom even in the coldest of conditions and where just a walk away up a river valley you will see century old glaciers melting before your very eyes. At Fox or Franz Joseph for those with the cash to splash, a closer view is available by way of helicopter. Either way the glaciers are a must to see because they are literally disappearing.
Other wonderful Winter attractions include the Curling Rink in historic Naseby for something different, whale watching in Kaikoura or catching a glimpse of the baby seal pups splashing about in the rock pools along the Kaikoura Coast or enjoying The Shire in Hobbiton where you may just catch a glimpse of Froddo at home. You could time your visit to experience the Winter Festival in Queenstown. A true celebration of all things winter in glamorous Queenstown where all kinds of fun and festivities add to the excitement of just being in this winter wonderland on the doorstep of Lake Whakatipu. Don't forget your glam snow gear and beanie as well as your dancing shoes because you will need all three. Defiantly worth the extra effort to take the road to Glenorchy at the end of the lake where scenes from The Lord of the Rings were filmed. Such natural beauty is hard to believe.
For me, it's a time to take a back road exploration to some of our more historic towns where centre stage you will find an old stone pub complete with roaring fire and the most comfortable regal leather lounge chairs ever from which to sip Central Otago Pinot Noir from and scoff down a Guiness Pie. With a campervan on hand it doesn't matter if you get a little lost out here, you've got your kitchen and warm douvets with you anyway.
Lastly don't forget to catch an All Blacks game. Being a rugby mad nation we are very proud of our boys in black and the atmosphere at one of these matches is electrifying. So put on your wooly hat and scarf and prepare to celebrate our national game and congratulate yourselves on choosing a Winter holiday here in New Zealand.