KIWI: Expedition Cruising - A SilverSea Sub-Antarctic Journey
This type of trip is fast becoming a global phenomenon, from New Zealand's sun-Antactic regions, Alaska, Patagonia or around Easter island, adventurous souls now find these specialty trips with fewer cruise passengers a great way to explore remote and sometimes unique, pristine parts of the world.
KIWI: Southern Comfort - Invercargill's Safari Lodge
After spending three days hiking along the spectacular Tuatapere Hump Ridge Track, I was a bit taken aback when I checked into the Safari Lodge in Invercargill for my last night’s stay in Southland to find the foyer decorated with an African shield, masks, carvings and a zebra skin.
KIWI: Stewart Island's Natural Beauty
A little island, off a little island, off a little island . . . is how David Attenborough once described his visit to a Ocean Beach on Stewart Island during a nighttime excursion to see kiwi birds in the wild. The flight across from Invercargill is just 20 minutes but it transports you to another time, in another place that seems to have been preserved for visits in a 'Tardis time machine.'
KIWI: Tuatapere Hump Ridge Track - Stairway to Heaven
This is an area with more wilderness and less people than you'll find on other tramping routes in New Zealand - it's that remote. From the shoreline of unspoilt beaches we walked along the track experiencing the diversity of our beautiful native bush as it changes dramatically with elevation gain from native podocarp forest to soaring limestone 'tors' on the mountaintop.
KIWI: Sitting on the DOC of the Bay - A Campervan in the Coromandel
As I looked out from my campsite at Fletcher Bay on the northernmost point of the Coromandel I thought how lucky am I. Here I was sitting with just one other smaller campervan right in front of a beautiful crescent-shaped sandy beach with some rocky outcrops poking out into the Colville Channel. It’s small and spectacular as well as lonesome at certain times of the year.
KIWI: High Seas Sensations – Cruising New Zealand
As a virgin cruise passenger I was apprehensive about spending four nights at sea with about 1900 other souls on Holland America Line’s MS Oosterdam, who would probably all be well versed in cruise line etiquette and the in's and out's of life aboard a massive vessel that operates like a medium sized New Zealand town.
KIWI: Top 10 Kiwi Coastal Department of Conservation Campsites
As summer approaches many of my friends start making arrangements for the festive holidays by dusting off all their camping gear, the stuff that has been stored in the garage for the past 12 months. Camping, campervan and caravanning is one of the finest ways to see New Zealand and to experience the great outdoors: hiking, swimming, kayaking, surfing or fishing.
KIWI: South by Southwest Auckland
The rugged bluff where I was standing was as weather-beaten as the chap standing next to me. His name was Frostie. "Life’s too short," he pronounced, as winds buffeted our bodies, "I'm 67 years-old and I still love my hunting, fishing and shooting." It was the shooting he intended giving me a crash course in.
KIWI: Top 10 Adventure Activities to Experience in Auckland
“For me it’s all about experiencing the great outdoors, enjoying a healthier lifestyle and having fun – for people full of life it’s about seeking out new activities and about overcoming your fears, stepping out beyond your comfort zone and being adventurous in one of the most spectacular countries in the world.
KIWI: The Gems and Jewels of the Tutukaka Coast
I had three days to discover what was new and refreshing about this eastern part of Northland. It soon became obvious it is the perfect place to tackle a few outdoor pursuits and adventures such as hiking, sea fishing, diving, snorkelling and kayaking. All right up my outdoor alley I have to say.
KIWI: Waiheke Wok Cooked Mussels
the great thing about this dish is that mussels from the local supermarket are inexpensive and available year round, and it doesn’t take long to prepare and cook. We used local Waiheke mussels and bought enough to serve 4 people.
KIWI: Island’s in the Gulf
The jewels in the crown of Auckland lie only a short distance from the heart of downtown out in the Hauraki Gulf. Take a day out on the water and discover some of the most beautiful islands in the whole of New Zealand
KIWI: Unpack, Inhale and Unwind – Breathing Easy on Auckland’s West Coast
It was only a short 40 minute drive from downtown Auckland to the heart of Kumeu’s renowned wine country and the famous black sand surfing breaks at Bethells Beach and Muriwai Beach. If wine and beaches aren’t enough, for those with a passion for outdoor adventures there’s surfing lessons, horse riding treks, mountain biking trails or riding an ATV (all-terrain vehicle).
KIWI: Waiheke Island – Paradise Found
Paradise it can be said is never far away on Waiheke Island, listed by Frommers Travel Guides as one of the top 12 destinations in the world in 2009. Situated 35 minutes away by ferry from downtown Auckland, this sensational island escape is the sparkling jewel in Auckland’s crown and is today considered one of the major draw cards for visitors to New Zealand.
KIWI: Waipoua Lodge, Northland
Welcome to Waipoua Lodge. This grand old dame of a building is a Qualmark rated 5 star guest lodge. Ian and Fran Farrant are the owners and hosts of this wonderful old kauri homestead built in the height of the pioneer period (1900-1914) that’s nestled on a ridge overlooking the vast Waipoua Forest.
KIWI: Conjuring Up Some Matakana Magic
Just a 45 minute drive north of Auckland in the fading light of a winter’s day I noticed the attention-grabbing signs for the Matakana Coast Wine Trail – an area of undulating hills and valleys, abundant vineyards, craft shops and art galleries, untouched beaches and three regional parks – Mahurangi, Scandrett and the jewel in the crown, Tawharanui.
KIWI: Going With The Flow - A Day on the Dart River
The trip itself is a mesmeric adventure that combines exhilarating wilderness jet boating with unique ‘Funyak’ inflatable canoes. It’s a ‘cool’ way to intimately explore this region’s magnificent World Heritage designated wilderness that’s located within Mt Aspiring National Park.
KIWI: Matakauri Lodge, Queenstown
Arriving at Matakauri Lodge, the crisp weather indicated that autumn had duly arrived. Down on the lakeside trees had metamorphosed into yellow buttercup and apple cider hues, where blustery winds ruffled the feathers of a harrier hawk as it flew along the edge of Lake Wakatipu.
KIWI: This Restless Land – Hiking the Tongariro Crossing & Mt. Ruapehu
Tongariro means ‘South Wind’ and once we had reached the first valley I could sense why it was so named. At first light we were crunching the muesli-like scoria underfoot, a well-defined trail that meandered between lichen-covered rocks and low clumps of bracken and Scottish heather where glassy streams gurgled through rocky gullies.
KIWI: On My Bike - Mountain Biking and the Queenstown Bike Festival
Attending a bike festival usually means only one thing . . . a wee bit of pedalling! It was the week before Easter and instead of eating chocolate Easter eggs I was busy hanging onto my handle bars as I careened down some steep goat trail in some of the most sensational backcountry terrain on the planet.
KIWI: The Quadrant Auckland - Sweet Suite Apartments
The Quadrant is a contemporary and stylish decorated hotel that offers harbour and city vistas from most of their one and two bedroom suite apartments. Check-in is seamless. I sauntered down the long elegant white-marble walkway to the elevators, eyeing the cosy; some would call it intimate, Quad Bar that looked perfect for a nightcap.
KIWI: The Wonder Country - Campervan Ventures in Southland
Earlier that first day I’d picked up my Maui campervan at Queenstown airport. I’d requested something small and functional; a vehicle with a fridge, stove and a bed - a shower and toilet I didn’t think was necessary. They gave me the keys to a Toyota Spirit 2 Grande, a perfect size vehicle for me to scoot around the Southern Alps region at leisure.