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Travelling with 3 year old kid in NZ - December 2013

Singapore, Singapore
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Travelling with 3 year old kid in NZ - December 2013

Hi All:

I'm planning for a 16 days trip to NZ (covering both North and South Islands) with my wife and 3-year old daughter in December 2013. Although most of the places will be of great interest for my kid, I'm a little worried about her safety in some of the spots - Franz Josef, Hooker Valley Track, Tasman Glacier, Skippers Canyon Jet boat to name a few.

Although me and my wife can take turns in looking after her in a few of these places and do the trips alone - which is really not a great idea of a family trip - I was wondering if there are any work around for this.

Anyone who has travelled with toddlers have any suggestions? Specially for Mount Cook treks, and Franz Josef. Any help is much appreciated. Thanks,

Sabhari

Wanaka, New Zealand
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1. Re: Travelling with 3 year old kid in NZ - December 2013

We have taken our children on lots of short walks. We hiked on the Hollyford Track when the youngest was only 3. You could certainly walk to look at the glaciers (up to the viewpoint, not on it), and on the Hooker Valley Track and Tasman Glacier tracks. Of course, you will need to be close to your daughter. Have you contacted the jet boat operators to see what their minimum age is?

There is a good playground in Greymouth. We used this as a stopping point between Nelson and Wanaka when our children were small. It's on the main road on the right (if heading south), by some toilets. Wanaka and Queenstown both have very scenically located playgrounds.

Ballarat, Australia
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2. Re: Travelling with 3 year old kid in NZ - December 2013

There are a lot of walks in NZ that are well enough graded for an all-terrain buggy to be useful. With a pair of parents you can carry it up and down the odd set of steps. I've even known people who walked Abel Tasman track this way! Having such a buggy would extend your range quite a bit, and would also make strolling around exploring towns easier.

I believe your biggest danger (other than road accidents, always a danger) is exploring the thermal areas in Rotorua. It's very important to stay on marked tracks - if you turn your back and she wanders off the path she could fall right through the ground into boiling mud. This is where having her safely strapped in a stroller would make life a lot less stressful.

New Zealand
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for South Island
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3. Re: Travelling with 3 year old kid in NZ - December 2013

Welcome to the forum :)

Franz Josef - the walk to the glacier is wheelchair and stroller friendly, you just can't walk ON the ice

Hooker Valley Track - let her walk portions, carry or stroller for the rest

Tasman Glacier - you can walk to see the glacier - if wanting the boat tour you will need to check the website for minimum age

Skippers Canyon Jet boat - check the website

safe travels :)

Wanaka, New Zealand
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4. Re: Travelling with 3 year old kid in NZ - December 2013

At Fox Glacier there is a short walk on the edge of town where you can see glowworms. Obviously this needs to be done at night, but your daughter might enjoy seeing the glowworms (and getting to stay up late!). Best of all, this is free!

Singapore, Singapore
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5. Re: Travelling with 3 year old kid in NZ - December 2013

Telly, Jean, WLNZ, thanks for the messages. Really helps. I was always thinking about the treks and hikes and not about the geysers and hot mud pools. Thanks for brining this up and also for your safety precautions.

Checked with Skippers Canyon and they allow kids 3 yrs and above on the ride.

Glacier trips - as per the website, 6 yrs is the min age for even the easiest trip, I guess I'm a bit out of luck here.

This is what I'm planning for Mt. Cook:

Day 1: visit to Lake Tekapo and Pukaki

Day 2: Hooker Valley track hike and Tasman track 4 WD Argo trip

Hope I should be able to manage with my kiddo in the rocky areas of the Hooker Valley track.

Thanks again.

Wanaka, New Zealand
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6. Re: Travelling with 3 year old kid in NZ - December 2013

Hooker Valley Track is absolutely fine for children , even small ones. Enjoy

Christchurch, New...
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7. Re: Travelling with 3 year old kid in NZ - December 2013

Does the Argo tour allow small kids? D you have a back pack in case she gets tired on the Hookr rTrack. Sinc eit is a one way track you can turn round at any time she gets tired or bored, but if she gets tired 30 min out you still have to get her back that 30 minutes. Can she normally walk for 1hr say to school or the supermarket?

8. Re: Travelling with 3 year old kid in NZ - December 2013

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