My favorite accomodations and places in NZ

Dec 3rd, 2007, 04:19 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 200
My favorite accomodations and places in NZ

In recent years I have taken 3 trips to New Zealand and here is a list of places to stay that I consider to offer great value or quality. My minimum requirement is that the place must be clean and well maintained. Nice furniture, great breakfast, good service and great location is a big plus. Surprisingly, we had a few places that in my opinion failed the test of adequate maintenance and cleanliness. They were OK but not great. I do feel that places that meet a good standard and offer quality should be recognized.

On my first two trips we ate out in restaurants but found the food to be great at some but marginal at most restaurants. On the last trip we select to use apartment hotels and holiday properties with cooking facilities. It was a great success and we would do our own cooking from now on.

All of the places listed below met our requirements and I would not hesitate to recommend to others. I rated the places on a scale from 1 to 10.

Auckland, Quest on Eden, Older place but well maintained and reasonable price. Rating 6

Beach Retreat Holiday House, Ohope Beach (Whakatane), Great location on a Beach, great ocean view, good value. Rating 7

Hamilton, Bella Vista Hamilton, Units small but well maintained, nice place and good value. We found all Bella Vista hotel locations great places to stay and offer consistent standard of quality. Rating 7

Oamaru, Dunedin, Invercargill, Te Anau, Hokitika, and Nelson, Bella Vista all offer good value and quality. Rating 7

Dunedin, 555 On Bayview nice place, Rating 8

Christchurch, Chateau Blanc Flag Suites, comfortable super place, Rating 10

Westport, Chelsea Gateway Motor Lodge ( part of Golden Chain) Rating 8

Fox Glacier, Te Waheka Inn, super place but expensive. Rating 10

Next week I will list all my favorite places to visit in New Zealand and my ratings. I hope this will help others in planning their trip.

ZfromWinnipeg is offline  
Dec 10th, 2007, 11:41 AM
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Ratings 8-10 exceptional, must see
Ratings 6-7 very interesting, and worthwhile
Ratings 4-5 marginally interesting, could skip the location


1. Auckland, overall city experience rated at 9 out of 10

a. Sky Tower 6
b. Auckland Museum 9
c. Auckland Art Gallery 4
d. Rangitoto Island 6, extinct volcano, nice walks
e. Davenport 6, nice ferry ride, good view from the battery hill
f. Mount Eden 6, extinct volcano, great view of the city
g. Auckland Zoo 6

2. Northland, overall experience 10

a. Matacohe Kauri Museum 9, very beautiful display of giant wood slabs and furniture and Gum collection
b. Waipoua Forest Walk 10, most incredible view of giant Kauri trees
c. Hokianga Harbour - Omapere 7, giant sand dunes on north side, sand dune slides, interesting walks. Nice walk on the south side of mouth of the harbour, interesting beaches, rocks and big waves. Good fishing for Red Snapper.
d. Cape Karikari 7, Karikari Estate Winery has exceptional Sauvignon Blanc, interesting drive.
e. Matauri Bay 7, nice beaches you can pick buckets of mussels.
f. Waitangi National Reserve 7

3. Coromandel, overall experience 9

a. Waihi Beach 7, great walks along the the coast to secluded super beaches
b. Hahei Cathedral Cove 8
c. Hot Water Beach 6
d. Karangahake Gorge 7, historic gold mining area, great walks and views

4. Bay of Plenty, overall experience 9

a. Tauranga 6, interesting city
b. Mount Manganui walk 7
c. Whakatane 7, interesting city
d. Ohope Beach walk 7
e. White Island Tour 9

5. Rotorua, overall experience 7

a. Whakarawerewa Thermal Reserve 7
b. Burried Village 6
c. Green and Blue Lakes 4
d. Forest walk along Tarawera Rd. 7

6. Huka Falls, 6

7. Tongariro NP 7, did not do the Rim walk or the crossing walk. I wish I had the time.

8. Wanganui 5, interesting town if you are driving by, a stop might be worthwhile

9. Napier 7, interesting city to explore, many wineries in the area

10. Waitomo Caves 4, OK to make a stop if driving by, overrun by tourists like me.

11. Wellington, overall experience 10

a. Te Papa Museum 10 +
b. Botanical Gardens 7
c. Parliament Buildings 6

Stay tuned for comments on South Island
ZfromWinnipeg is offline  
Dec 10th, 2007, 12:16 PM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 17,547
Ratings like these are personal and subjective. If you'd like to compare them to the results of the NZ Automobile Assn's web poll, "101 Must do's for Kiwis", click here:
mlgb is offline  
Dec 10th, 2007, 01:49 PM
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Posts: 200
I agree, they are one man's opinion. Thanks for the Web link, the survey looks very interesting.

ZfromWinnipeg is offline  
Dec 10th, 2007, 04:45 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2003
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AATravel 101 must see list is comprehensive and excellent. I guess I have no need to add any comments on the south island.

I was also planning to provide similar comments on my last 3 trips to Australia, but I just might restrict them to accommodations. Obviously there is plenty of excellent material on Internet to assist people with trip planning.

Thanks, mlgb
ZfromWinnipeg is offline  
Dec 10th, 2007, 06:20 PM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 105
ZfromWinnipeg, I'm interested in reading about your favorite accommodation and places in NZ. It is always good to get a varied opinion as we have found not everyone has the same tastes/budget/experience. All information helps me too make better informed choices.....especially from a fellow Canuck
Calex is offline  
Apr 12th, 2008, 11:45 AM
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Finally I am getting around to the south Island.

1. Christchurch overall experience rated 7 out of 10
a. Botanical gardens 7
b. Robert Mcdougall Art Galery 7
c. Cantebury Museum 6
d. City, 6

2. Moeraki boulders 5

3. Dundin - Otago Peninsula overall rating 9
a. City 8
b. Otago Peninsula drive over top return along coast 7
c. Otago Museum 5
d. Lanarch Castle (great view of the bay) 7
e. Penguin Place 6
f. Royal Albatros Centre 6

4. Catlins Drive, interesting but most of the forest cut down for farming, a few patches of forest and trails left. Rating 6

5. Nugget Point 7

6. Invercargill, 1000 yr old Totara, Rating 5

7. Te Anau overall 10
a. Town 6
b. Doubtful Sound cruise 9
c. Milford Sound cruise 9, very busy
d. Milford Road 7
e. Milford Track day walks from the Milford road 9

8. Crown Ridge road, Queenstown to Wanaka 6

9. Queenstown 6

10. Arrowtown 6

11. Wanaka 5

12. Mount Cook, Kea Point track 10

13. Fox Glacier 8

14. Franz Josef Glacier 8
a. Bush trail to glacier overlook, 6 hrs. return, tough walk over rocks, roots, moderately steep. Worthwhile if you can handle the walk. Take plenty of water. Rating 10
b. Valley walk, easy. 8
c. Flight over glaciers and Mount Cook 10

15. Hokitika 5

16. Greymouth 5

17. Punakaiki Pancake rocks 5

18. Abel Tasman NP, Incredible beaches with golden sand and crystal clean water, great walks. Rating 10

19. Farewell Spit Tour 8

When I find time I will summarize my Australia experience

ZfromWinnipeg is offline  

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