New Zealand

Mid-January through March, perhaps longer.

I am seeking passage by sea from Hawaii to New Zealand, preferably as crew and/or cook aboard a sailboat, but almost any vessel will do.

Upon arrival in Auckland, I’ll be eager to meet students and faculty at University of Auckland, and perhaps stay in a campus dorm while school’s out for summer. I also want to check out waste, water and other resource management programs throughout the country.

I plan to use WWOOF, Servas and Couchsurfing while exploring the nooks and crannies of Aotearoa by land and sea. Besides intentional communities and resource management programs, I am also very interested in New Zealand’s maritime culture. What are the chances I can land a boat-building apprenticeship? Last but not least, Fjordland and other parks and conservation areas are high on my walkabout list.

As with Hawaii, I have long been intrigued with New Zealand and its physical and cultural landscape. Thus, I will be hunting careers, courses of study and other adventures during a stay to span several lunar laps — maybe even years, but after I complete the rest of my RTW journey.

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4 thoughts on “New Zealand

  1. A friend of mine traveled there recently. Her blog is:
    itraveliam.wordpress.com
    check it out- she has a few entries on Australia and New Zealand. Her pics are amazing.
    I haven’t been, but I read in the Smithsonian magazine about certain kind of a bug/mosquito which are prevalent in New Zealand. Apparently, they’re everywhere (not sure which season), and the bites are really painful. Some people have had serious problems….so read up on that and bring bug/mosquito repellant!

  2. Don’t forget to get to Oz. I’d especially recommend Melbourne – it’s my favorite Antipodean city. Sophisticated but casual, big enough to have all you want, small enough to enjoy it. I’ve always regretted that I didn’t get to Tasmania, even though some of the Aussies look down their noses at the hillbillies. Your Alaska pictures reminded me.

  3. I spent 3 weeks in NZ in Oct ’11, as you know, and will try to summarize some key points you may find interesting.

    You will get to see the ‘glow worms’ if you go black water rafting in Waitomo, but its a bit touristy. You have to go with a guided group, since they are on private land and dangerous solo, but still it was interesting and the guides try to make it entertaining.

    Rotorua sulfur springs and geysers are a pass unless you have not seen them elsewhere, or love the stinky. Redwoods are great, but I like trees. The cultural exposure dinner was both educational and entertaining, worth the cost IMHO.

    By this point you will surely have noticed the tree farming throughout NZ (at least I hope they are farms). Everywhere from newly planted to freshly cut, I was imagining these progressive peoples had a sustainable plan for providing lumber for their local needs. If you look into this, I would love to hear what you find!

    Tongariro National Park has one of the many 3-4 ‘ish day treks. I did the alpine crossing here, which I believe can (must?) be part of the loop if your doing the longer trek. The epic battle scene where the ring of Sauron is cut from his hand has several of the vast vistas you will hopefully see here (if your not unlucky as we were and it was snowing and very little visibility).

    Tararua has another of these short few-day treks, but alas I only had time for a half-day in and then back out. Saw an abandoned steam engine in the middle of the forest (mind blowing that they would run a rail on that terrain!) and a gorgeous little stream gorge. Would have loved to explore more!

    Wellington is a bustling, vibrant, small city, and the museum there was very large, modern, and quite interesting. Save some time (at least several hours!) to wander around the city as there are some small sections with a lot of character! Check out the robot on the corner of Courtenay Pl and Cambridge Tce. Cuba St. often had street performers. And the wooden bridge and art by the city civic center was fun also. Mt Victoria is a good spot for some edge-of-town walking if you find yourself with energy and time to spare.

    We took the ferry over to Picton then shot over to Nelson, but not much memorable (well except for many vinyards) until we got to Abel Tasman National Park. This one was a bit more touristy but nice. The trek I really wanted to do was “The Heaphy Track“ in Kahurangi Nat’l Park. If you go, DON’T YOU DARE TELL ME ABOUT IT! Just kidding, but seriously I will be very jealous…

    We hiked on the Franz Josef glacier, something I wanted to do before they melt. But don’t worry; I know from a reliable source whom must know more than the worlds’ many scientists (a glacier guide) that GLOBAL WARMING IS A MYTH, so no need to rush to see the glaciers, lol. When I heard this from the guide I had to stifle a cackle…

    Queenstown was eh. Tourist town, good I guess if you want to do some bungee jumping, etc.

    Te Anu and Fjordland was beautiful! Bring your rain gear! Another great trek here, but more challenging I hear and definitely have to time it right with the seasons and get lucky with the weather. Milford sound is spectacular – as the locals said, if its not raining then you don’t see the multitude of waterfalls… so here you want the rain!

    A fantastic place with so much to see and do, I know my 3 weeks was just enough to find out what I will do on my next visit!

  4. Hey Andy, glad I stumbled onto your travel blog. Be sure to look me up if you come to Brisbane. There are so many amazing places within an hour of here. It’d be great to catch up again after all these years!

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