South Island-- places to stay

Aug 17th, 2004, 11:19 AM
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South Island-- places to stay

Hi! We will be on the South Island in November for 3 weeks, and I have been trying to get our hotels booked. There are still a few places I am having trouble deciding on, so any advice you give would be much appreciated! (We would like to keep most night to under $100US.)
Abel Tasman area-- I think we would prefer to be near the beach if possible. Has anyone stayed at The Haven, Twin Views, or Kaiteriteri B&B??

Franz Josef or Fox Glacier - has anyone stayed at Glen Fern Villas? Any other suggestions?

Other places I need recommendations for are:
Haast/Lake Moeraki (The Wilderness Lodge sounds amazing, but is it worth the price??)
Te Anau
Dunedin/Otago Peninsula

Thanks again!

jonesie is offline  
Aug 19th, 2004, 03:09 AM
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We have stayed at Glenfern Villas very nice quite new nothing is very cheap in Fox or Franz.We have also stayed at Wanaka Heights Motel in Wanaka good price nice and comfortable with a good view.In Dunedin we have stayed at the Commodore Motel comfortable reasonable price $90 and at 755 Regal Court Motel more expensive $120 very good .Thats about it.Have a look at Hotels Motels all over NZ.
Hope this is helpful we are New Zealanders living in OZ.
Joybell is offline  
Aug 19th, 2004, 03:22 PM
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A good website for last minute hotel rooms is
This can give you a good idea of the prices you can expect to pay in each area and has quite extensive coverage of New Zealand cities and towns.

Christa is offline  
Aug 20th, 2004, 09:11 AM
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We liked the the Punga Grove Motor Lodge in Franz Josef (rates begin at NZ $160 per their web site - We also liked the Lake Matheson Motel in Fox Glacier for which we paid about $55 US in the low season.

We also liked the Explorer Motor Lodge in Te Anau for which we paid about $60 per night in the low season.

We stayed at Lake Moeraki Wilderness Lodge several years ago - it is expensive, but we thoroughly enjoyed our stay. If you stay there, you might want to consider staying at least two nights, as there are alot of activities included, such as guided walks, use of the lodge's canoes, etc.

Good luck!
Melnq8 is offline  
Aug 20th, 2004, 12:47 PM
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Hi jonesie,
As a NZer I too would recommend 755 Regal Court in George Street in Dunedin as a very comfortable motel with welcoming and friendly moteliers and staff. The motel is on a bus route, and is 10 minutes strolling into the city. We have stayed there twice for a week each time. Each time we have been treated to the sight of a native woodpigeon (kereru)sometimes two, visiting trees around the motel. I would also endorse the Explorer Motel in Te Anau. Reasonably priced, very comfortable again, and close to the lake without being on the main thoroughfare.
The website joybell recommended is the place I go to combined with for accommodation throughout NZ. We have travelled around the South Island for 3 weeks every January for the past 4 years, as well as intermittently over the preceding 30 years, so do have some knowledge of motels I would recommend.
I have noted in the short time I have known about this website that many people have recommended the Lake Moeraki Wilderness Lodge - I would be following their recommendations. Wherever you stay, do enjoy this area of NZ - it is so beautiful (although I wouldn't admit that to my husband who was born in the South Island and thinks it is the Mainland!)
dotty is offline  
Aug 20th, 2004, 10:32 PM
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Hi Jonesie, We are spending 3 nights in Wanaka in November and after a lot of research have booked in at The Moorings in a 2 bedroom apartment. They are a short walk to restaurants, etc. and have lake views. Last year we stayed at Wanaka Springs Lodge, a beautiful B & B, but decided we need a bit more room this time. Lakeside Apartments are right next door to The Moorings and look fabulous, but were outside our price range. By the way, while you are in Wanaka, are you planning on doing the Siberia Experience or the Rob Roy Glacier hike? We are hoping to do one or both of these activities. They sound great! Good luck with your trip.
ishki is offline  
Aug 20th, 2004, 10:38 PM
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Hi Jonesie, It's me again, I forgot to include our accommodation for Nelson. I found an apartment with great water views called Harbour View Apartments. We are having 3 nights there. The website is

Again, I looked at a lot of accommodation, but this one had the price, the views, and it looks lovely! Have a great trip!
ishki is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2004, 06:14 AM
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WOW! You guys are awesome, I have already started emailing a lot of the places about availability. Since you are all so awesome, I thought I would push my luck, and ask for another favor. The last 8 days of our trip we are struggling with how to schedule:
23rd - Franz Josef (this is booked)
24th - thought originally Lake Moeraki Lodge, but we are struggling a bit with the pricing. If we skip it, and go straight to Wanaka, is that an awful drive???
25th - Wananka, possibly the second night
26th - ??? Te Anau, maybe??? We have the Doubtful Sound cruise the next day, so we have to be in Manapouri by noon on the 27th...
27th - Doubtful Sound overnight (already booked and paid for!)
28th - ???? Te Anau again? We would like to see the Milford Sound too, (hear the drive is incredible) does it make sense to do it here???
29th - Dunedin/Otago - figuring we will need 1-1.5 days to see the Albatross colony, penguins, etc. Thoughts??
30th - Dundein/maybe Oamaru overnight to see the penguins there.
1st - need to end up in Christchurch for flight the next day

Thanks again for all your help! As always, you are all awesome!!
jonesie is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2004, 07:04 AM
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Jonesie - What is booked at Franz Joseph?
Jed is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2004, 07:07 AM
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Jed- we booked our hotel at Franz Josef, and are in the process of booking a heli hike.
Is that what you meant?
jonesie is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2004, 11:02 PM
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Hi jonesie, if you are planning on staying at the Franz Josef Glacier Hotel, make sure you ask for a room in the newest section, as the rooms in the older section are quite dated with pokey bathrooms.
ishki is offline  
Aug 24th, 2004, 05:44 AM
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Jed is offline  
Aug 28th, 2004, 12:38 PM
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We stayed a Lake Moeraki Wilderness Lodge for two nights during our honeymoon and loved it. One of my favorite memories was kayaking on the lake in the rain when we arrived. I would definitely recommend the splurge but only if you can stay two nights. The activities make the stay worth while. We went on a nature hike, kayaked on the lake (twice) and took a hike down to the beach to watch penguins surf in. Wonderful!
POlson is offline  
Sep 1st, 2004, 08:50 PM
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Jonesie -

No, the drive from Franz Josef to Wanaka isn't awful. We've driven from Franz Josef/Fox Glacier to Queenstown several times and if memory serves, it takes about six hours. You'll reach Wanaka first, so that cuts off some drive time.

If you get an early start, you can have a leisurely drive to Wanaka, making stops along the way if you're so inclined.

On the 26th, you might want to consider staying in Queenstown and driving to Manapouri the next day. It's not that far, maybe two hours from Queenstown (I think). That way, you can spend a day in Te Anau after your overnight cruise instead of staying one night in Te Anau on either side of the cruise. Yes, it makes sense to see Milford as you've indicated on your itinerary. It is a beautiful drive to Milford - in fact, I prefer the drive over the actual cruise.
Melnq8 is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2004, 04:22 PM
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Sounds like a great trip. We were on the South Island for our honeymoon 2 months ago. I am soooo envious. We can't wait to go back.

The drive from Franz Josef to Wanaka is very nice and not bad at all (we did it in dead winter too) and I absolutely loved the drive from Wanaka to Queenstown. I highly recommend taking Highway 89, the Cardrona Road over the Crown Range instead of Highway 6...beautiful views!

Best of Luck! It's going to be amazing!
Canadian_Traveler is offline  
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