posted by Amy
A month in New Zealand was quite an adventure for our family. It turns out that the adults had much more fun than the kids. Riding in the back of a camper van through mountain roads apparently produces much motion sickness. They were all troopers though and I for one would do it again in a heartbeat. Of course, I would still be sitting in the front seat with my great views and my stable seating.
New Zealand is totally set up for travellers of our variety. The roads are smooth, the visitor centers are well staffed and the people are all friendly and “Good as gold.” Our route was courtesy of a great resource we found on the internet. Ron Laughlin, a former Ohioan who has relocated permanently to New Zealand planned our whole itinerary for free. Yes, I know nothing is free, and truly in New Zealand where the prices are sky high for everything, finding any kind of deal is, a big deal! Ron gets a commission for referring his travelers to the campervan companies and in turn gives us a custom itinerary. Here is his info. just in case any of you are planning a trip to NZ in the near future. http://www.ronlaughlin.net/
1. Jumping off of things
2. Hiking the Tongoriro Pass (a twelve mile hike that we, of course, did in the pouring rain)
3. Going to a traditional Maori meal – hongi
4. Seeing penguins and seals in the wild
5. Learning (relearning) how to knit. Had to put all that sheep’s wool to some good use
6. Eating a deliciously fresh fish dinner at Fleur’s restaurant. We had never heard of her, but apparently she’s famous in the foodie world, and deservedly so.
7. Climbing on a glacier
8. Cruising in the Milford Sound – some of us even swam in the freezing waters
9. Meeting lots of interesting fellow travellers while preparing meals in the many campgrounds where we stayed
10. Spending one full month of uber family togetherness and living to tell the story, mostly unscathed.