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Thread: Backpacking in New Zealand

  1. #1

    Default Backpacking in New Zealand

    For those who have been to New Zealand before, can I check with you on the following questions? I know that people will tell me do a goggle search, etc but what I wanted to find out is the real experiences of those who have been there before.

    1) What is there to see in New Zealand?

    2) What are the places that MUST visit?

    3) Best time to go there?

    4) Any good budget accommodation to recommend?

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Senior Member xtemujin's Avatar
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    Arrow Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    It is cheaper to buy the bus pass in New Zealand. I've stayed in the YHA hostel when I was in NZ and it is good.

    Many people will bypass Greymouth but there are some splendid beach over there.

    If you're staying in the YHA hostel in Dunedin, grab a cab from the bus station as the walk is a solid 15-20 minutes of walking. But it has a lovely view of the harbour.

    Queenstown is very touristy.

    When I was there, I met more tourist then the local.
    Last edited by xtemujin; 20th January 2007 at 01:18 AM.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    How much is your budget and how long are u going to be there?

  4. #4

    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    All information can find at this link http://www.newzealand.com/travel/get...aland-home.cfm

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    If you are travelling alone, getting a bus pass is best way to travel around.

    If 2 or more persons, I would advise you to self drive. You will get to enjoy the beautiful landscape and countryside of NZ.

    Think you need to advise us on which island you intend to visit and the duration.

    Generally, south island is more scenic, more green, mountain and glacier on the west coast, nice flat green countryside on the east coast.

    North island is volcanic land, winery tours and more populated.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    Quote Originally Posted by xtemujin View Post
    It is cheaper to buy the bus pass in New Zealand. I've stayed in the YHA hostel when I was in NZ and it is good.

    Many people will bypass Greymouth but there are some splendid beach over there.

    If you're staying in the YHA hostel in Dunedin, grab a cab from the bus station as the walk is a solid 15-20 minutes of walking. But it has a lovely view of the harbour.

    Queenstown is very touristy.

    When I was there, I met more tourist then the local.
    Thanks for the info.

    Is there a weekly or monthly bus pass or just a single trip pass for tourists?

    What's the room rate for twin sharing at YHA Hotel?

  7. #7

    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    I did a 12 days photoshoot in New Zealand South Island during Feb 05.

    One thing is to get an experienced driver and go in a group of 4. There are very cheap lodgings that is like a living room with 2 bedrooms. Costing like average of $150 per room which is around $40 per pax per night. The accomodations are very comfortable, clean and spacious with cooking facilities sometimes too.

    In a group of 4 also can share car rental. Self drive is the way to go as the route itself is VERY scenic and NZ has scenic stops where you can just park the car and get off and shoot. Furthermore the weather can be fickle so try to be more flexible if you intend to catch certain famous scenes.

    As to the MUST-VISIT place I would say it is the west coast where you have dramatic coast lines and glaciers.

    BTW, now NZ is summer already. Although can see flowers you WILL not see many snowcap mountains and certain mountain ranges are just an ugly grey now.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    Quote Originally Posted by DumbDoDo View Post
    If you are travelling alone, getting a bus pass is best way to travel around.

    If 2 or more persons, I would advise you to self drive. You will get to enjoy the beautiful landscape and countryside of NZ.

    Think you need to advise us on which island you intend to visit and the duration.

    Generally, south island is more scenic, more green, mountain and glacier on the west coast, nice flat green countryside on the east coast.

    North island is volcanic land, winery tours and more populated.
    I am thinking of 2-3 weeks. Enough time to conquer the north and south islands? Look like I need to go both north and south. Driving from north to south will take days man. Internal domestic flight from north to south? cost?

    Since you also mentioned about the bus pass, what kind of bus pass? Weekly / monthly / single trip bus pass for tourists to travel unlimited rides within a period or ???

    The first place that I wanted to visit is the place where "Lord of the Ring" was filmed. Where mountain is that?

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    Quote Originally Posted by USM View Post
    I am thinking of 2-3 weeks. Enough time to conquer the north and south islands? Look like I need to go both north and south. Driving from north to south will take days man. Internal domestic flight from north to south? cost?

    Since you also mentioned about the bus pass, what kind of bus pass? Weekly / monthly / single trip bus pass for tourists to travel unlimited rides within a period or ???

    The first place that I wanted to visit is the place where "Lord of the Ring" was filmed. Where mountain is that?
    2 weeks in one island hardly enuff..

    u need more time...esp in the South....beautiful...

    time to go is now....Spring...cooling

  10. #10

    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    Quote Originally Posted by wind30 View Post

    As to the MUST-VISIT place I would say it is the west coast where you have dramatic coast lines and glaciers.
    That means that I have to arrive at Christchurch or Queestown International Airport in order to go to the west coast areas of southern island.

    Did you take a taxi or shuttle or bus when you arrive at the airport?

  11. #11

    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    Quote Originally Posted by ernest_ted View Post
    2 weeks in one island hardly enuff..

    u need more time...esp in the South....beautiful...

    time to go is now....Spring...cooling
    North or south island since I have limited time of 2-3 weeks? What is your advice?

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    Quote Originally Posted by USM View Post
    North or south island since I have limited time of 2-3 weeks? What is your advice?
    personally South......

    better climate, more scenary

    1) Fox glaicer (Franz Josef)
    2) Queenstown to Te Anau
    3) Milford or doubtful sound
    4) Dundein
    5) Picton
    6) Nelson
    7) Christchurch
    8) Kaikoura (lobster dammn good)

  13. #13

    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    Quote Originally Posted by USM View Post
    That means that I have to arrive at Christchurch or Queestown International Airport in order to go to the west coast areas of southern island.

    Did you take a taxi or shuttle or bus when you arrive at the airport?
    We rented a car from the airport for 12 days.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    aiyah...go Borders and check out the 'Lonely Planet' for NZ.
    everything is there (maybe check with CSers for what to shoot)
    I think it's the season for whale-watching...

  15. #15

    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    Quote Originally Posted by USM View Post
    1) What is there to see in New Zealand?

    2) What are the places that MUST visit?

    3) Best time to go there?

    4) Any good budget accommodation to recommend?

    Thank you.
    1. See beautiful mountains and lakes

    2. I went to Southern Island. My recommendation is as follows:
    Kaikoura - Whale watching, Seal Colony, Winery. Eat Crayfish.

    Lake Tekapo - beautiful lake, mountains and Church of the Good Shepherd

    Dunedin - See big bird-Royal Albatross, Walk steepest street-Baldwin Street, Railway station

    Milford Sound - See heaven mountains, mirror lake

    see my NZ thread

    3. Not sure when is best but you can check their calendar schedule.

    see http://www.newzealand.com/travel/sig...ities-home.cfm

    4. My recommendation is to plan your route first and then transport. If you are carrying a lot of stuffs, rental car self drive is convenience. You can return the car at different place.
    Certain place can take train like Kaikoura to Dunedin. Not sure abt bus and coach service but you can read more info at this link
    http://www.newzealand.com/travel/tra...ed/210107.html

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    Quote Originally Posted by megaweb View Post
    1. See beautiful mountains and lakes

    2. I went to Southern Island. My recommendation is as follows:
    Kaikoura - Whale watching, Seal Colony, Winery. Eat Crayfish.

    Lake Tekapo - beautiful lake, mountains and Church of the Good Shepherd

    Dunedin - See big bird-Royal Albatross, Walk steepest street-Baldwin Street, Railway station

    Milford Sound - See heaven mountains, mirror lake

    see my NZ thread

    3. Not sure when is best but you can check their calendar schedule.

    see http://www.newzealand.com/travel/sig...ities-home.cfm

    4. My recommendation is to plan your route first and then transport. If you are carrying a lot of stuffs, rental car self drive is convenience. You can return the car at different place.
    Certain place can take train like Kaikoura to Dunedin. Not sure abt bus and coach service but you can read more info at this link
    http://www.newzealand.com/travel/tra...ed/210107.html

    Dunedin got penguin close up also

  17. #17

    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    Quote Originally Posted by ernest_ted View Post
    Dunedin got penguin close up also
    Dunedin has many nice places. See this link http://www.newzealand.com/travel/des...otago-home.cfm

    But dun take night city on top of the hill. The wind is so strong and blow your setup away

  18. #18
    Senior Member xtemujin's Avatar
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    Arrow Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    New Zealand is really setup for tourism as most coaches will drop you at the hostel. You can buy a NZ travel pass. The timetable for the bus service will be provided.

    http://www.travelpass.co.nz/

    Alternatively, you can buy an independent coach operator buss ticket from the YHA help desk.

    I did the South Island for 10 days and it was a bit of a rush. I took AirNZ and transit at Auckland to Christchurch. There is a bus stop outside the airport and you can take the bus to Christchurch. IIRC the walk to the Christchurch YHA hostel is about 5-10 minutes and it is near a carpark.

    I took the Tranzalpine train from Christchurch to Greymouth. Most people will bypass Greymouth and go straight to Frank Josef. My friends and I decided to stay for a day at Greymouth to wait for our bus to Frank Josef. It was a good decision as we were able to go for a day tour to Punakaiki and see the pancake rock and some other attraction.

    At Frank Josef, there are two operators(Company) to bring you up for the glacier walk. You'll be loaded to a van and alight somewhere near the base of the glacier. The base of the glacier is quite dirty but things change as you go up the glacier. Cold pure water at the glacier.

    Milford Sound. It is quite a long journey to the ferry service and the place is quite crowded.

    Queenstown. The place for the NZ shotover boat. Bungy jumping(AJ Hackett) at a bridge inbetween the mountain, bungy jumping near a cliff at the cable car.

    Dunedin. University atmostphere. A bit dirty with unsweeped roads. There is a castle but I find that it's not interesting to me anyway.
    Last edited by xtemujin; 21st January 2007 at 08:50 AM.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    Quote Originally Posted by USM View Post
    For those who have been to New Zealand before, can I check with you on the following questions? I know that people will tell me do a goggle search, etc but what I wanted to find out is the real experiences of those who have been there before.

    1) What is there to see in New Zealand?

    2) What are the places that MUST visit?

    3) Best time to go there?

    4) Any good budget accommodation to recommend?

    Thank you.
    you want to bring the 1d along? hahahaa

  20. #20

    Default Re: Backpacking in New Zealand

    any pointers on car rent price per day over there? can use Singapore driving license or not?

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