New Zealand Travel Tips
It’s time to move New Zealand to the top of your bucket list. And you’ll need to book now!
There is a reason why New Zealand is one of the premier hiking destinations in the world. It quite literally is a hiker’s paradise and one of the reasons why I not only went to university there but went back with my wife for our three-week honeymoon filled with the country’s best treks, road-tripping adventures, and our favorite…craft beer!
It’s nearly impossible to NOT have a great time in New Zealand but I do have a few tips and pieces of advice to really make your trip to the Land of the Long White Cloud one you’ll never forget.
When to travel
Not only is New Zealand epically beautiful, given its location in the Southern Hemisphere, it’s the perfect destination to escape our winter. The ideal time to visit is between January and April as you’ll take advantage of the warm tropical climate of the North Island and cool temperate climate on the South Island.
What to bring
Since you’ll experience a variety of climates, regardless of which island you visit, you’ll definitely want to take a layering approach. Wool is a great option for a hiking base layer, well broken-in hiking boots, and you’ll want to make sure to bring some quality rain gear. Speaking of wool, some of the best Marino wool in the world comes from New Zealand and you can always pick up that perfect piece when you arrive.
When to book
Because of the popularity around New Zealand’s national treks, you’ll need to book far in advance. The most sought-after trekking permits are for the Milford Sound Track as well as the Routeburn and Kepler Tracks. Permits typically sell out 10+ months in advance so you’ll want to secure those as soon as possible. Beware, if you wait until September, you may miss out on permits for entire spring trekking season!
What not to miss
Here is a list, in no particular order, of the must-see destinations and hikes in New Zealand. They vary from day hikes to multiple overnight hut stays.
- Milford Sound Track (South Island)
- Abel Tasman (South Island)
- Kepler Track (South Island)
- Routeburn Track (South Island)
- Kaikora Track (South Island)
- Tongoriro crossing (North Island)
- Coromandel Peninsula (North Island)
My favorite moments
My wife and I couldn’t get over how wild New Zealand still feels. Roads that hug the ocean side, high mountain highways, and endless waterfalls and canyons to gawk at, driving is simple and easy, with plenty of opportunities to pull over and take in the breathtaking scenery. The food in New Zealand is really underrated. From basic but delicious fish n’ chips, to high quality farm to table cuisine and seafood, New Zealand also boasts world renowned craft beer, coffee, and wine, it’s quietly become a foodie haven. The huts on the national tracks are incredibly well maintained and quite comfortable. With communal cooking and hang out spaces, comfortable beds, and unreal views, New Zealand’s hut quality competes with anywhere in the world.
New Zealand is an unforgettable destination and needs to be on your list! Give our destination and Adventure specialists a call today and you’ll soon be well on your way to experiencing one of the most spectacular hiking destinations on the planet.