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itinerary

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Newton, MA
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itinerary

My 21 year old daughter and I are traveling for 2 weeks at the end of Feb. beginning of March. I am just starting to plan our trip and am totally overwhelmed. We would like to get off the "beaten track" and would also like to stay at Bed and Breakfasts and do a "farm stay". We will be starting from Dunedin and flying home from Auckland. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Auckland, New...
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1. Re: itinerary

Hi

I guess that you are going to drive???

What are your interests, beaches, rain forests, museums, mountains, shopping, gardens, parks, hiking, dining, crafts???

The list is endless.

One of the best web sites to use for bed and breakfast and farmstays is www.bnb.co.nz

It is the web site of the Black Bed and Breakfast Book, the properties have all had a basic inspection and there is a great variety of types and prices.

www.aatravel.co.nz will give you a list of sights to visit and also places like motels and hotels and some B n Bs.

If you write some further info we can give you more ideas.

Newton, MA
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2. Re: itinerary

Yes, we are planning on renting a car. Our interests include hiking, kayaking, some museums, knitting ( I would like to stay at a sheep farm), white water rafting, local culture. We don't mind driving a lot.

Auckland, New...
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3. Re: itinerary

Two weeks is a comfortable but not excessive amount of time to drive from Dunedin to Auckland and sightsee etc on the way and you are going to have to make some choices.

I suggest that you split your time evenly between the south and north island and also consider flying between islands.

With regard to the north island if you chose to start from Wellington then the most scenic route north is via Masterton and Napier. From Napier the usual route would be across the Taupo Napier Highway (Highway in name only) to Taupo – a very scenic route. Taupo would be a good place to base yourselves for a couple of days – you will find all the activities you are interested in in the Taupo area and more besides. From Taupo you could head through the Tongariro National Park and back up towards Auckland on SH4 or of course the usual route up through Rotorua.

The off the beaten track route north from Napier would be to follow SH2 via Gisborne. The really off the beaten track route would be to take SH38 from Wairoa via Lake Waikaremoana and Murapara to Rotorua. However be aware that SH38 is very narrow and twisty and in parts is still unsealed – I can already hear other posters advising against this route but I have done it on many occasions – it is slow and there are no shops or petrol stations but otherwise it is fine.

Depending on time an option would be to fly from South Island to Taupo or Rotorua.

If you can find the time I would recommend spending a night or two in the Auckland area. There is far more to Auckland than the city itself and there are some very scenic areas within an hour of the airport and the CBD, in particular the Waitakere Ranges, an area of exceptional natural beauty where you will find stunning scenery, black sand beaches, regenerating forest, waterfalls, walking tracks and not many people.

North of Auckland (The Hokianga, Northland and the Bay of Islands) are all wonderful but you would not have the time to get up there.

B & Bs are a great way to meet people. Most will provide hospitality rather than just accommodation and the owners are generally a great source of local, regional and most likely national information.

There are many accommodation sites but some worth looking at are:

www.tourism.net.nz

www.accommodationinnewzealand.co.nz

www.nzonline.org.nz

www.bluecastle.co.nz

I note that you don’t mind driving a lot but be aware that it takes a long time to get from A to B in New Zealand. We do not have an extensive freeway system and you just cannot cover the distances like you can in the States. Almost without fail visitors comment that it takes them longer than expected to travel around.

Enjoy.

Newton, MA
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4. Re: itinerary

Thank you so much for all the information. I really appreciate it!

Auckland, New...
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5. Re: itinerary

Hi

Well you are starting to get alot of info.

Museums of note are Te Papa in Wellington, Auckland Museum with its wonderful Maori Cultural experience and Matakohe Kauri Museum north west of Auckland.

You should be able to go kayaking in Taupo, Rotorua or Able Tasman, these are the ones that I know of and there are probably lots more. White Water Rafting is available around Rotorua in the North Island and Queenstown in the South.

A farmstay on a sheep farm in the South Island would be just great. Check out www.newzealand.com for farms and bed and breakfasts.

Please be aware that many properties offering accommodation in New Zealand do not meet any minimum standards, therefore you should be looking for Qualmark properties, www.athomenz.org.nz or www.bnb.co.nz which are all required to meet some sort of standard.

Do hope that someone in the South Island will come up with some current info for you.

6. Re: itinerary

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