Fodor's Travel Talk Forums

Fodor's Travel Talk Forums (
-   Australia & the Pacific (
-   -   Time to go to NZ (

Evelyn Jul 2nd, 2002 06:55 PM

Time to go to NZ
My husband & I really want to go to NZ this year. Is it too late to plan a trip for end of Sept/beginning of Oct? What about planning now for late Dec? I know that's the summer holiday season in NZ. Is summer holiday as crowded as here in CA? I'm unsure of what the weather will be like in early Oct. Also, I'm afraid I won't be able to find availability in lodging and such. Any advice for a late planner? Thanks a bunch!

Patti Jul 3rd, 2002 06:23 AM

Hi evelyn<BR>It's never too late to go to a beautiful country like New Zealand. There would never be anything like a crowded place in NZ as there would be in California. New Zealand is sparsely populated; at least on South Island that's true. You can drive for miles and not see another house or farm. It is a beautiful country. If you can try to see Mount Cook, Queenstown and its beautiful lake, the glaciers, take the Alpine train from Greymouth to Christchurch. There's much to see and do.

ALF Jul 3rd, 2002 11:28 AM

You would be arriving in the middle of Spring if you went in October. At that time of year, you can pretty much just show up wherever you please and the odds of getting into any attraction or staying in any accommodation will be extremely high. As Patti pointed out, Kiwis' ideas of 'crowded' are nothing like Californians' ideas. On several occasions, we visited a place in New Zealand that seemed blissfully quiet and remote, only to hear a local complain about the crowding. Even in late December, you can still get around without much in the way of advance planning. We drove all around the North Island during December and January - we didn't always get into our first choice for accommodations, but always easily found a good alternative. Weather in October on the North Island will be like coastal northern CA in April. On the South Island, it will be more like Portland, OR. Expect some cool nights and occasional rain, particularly on the South Island.

Evelyn Jul 3rd, 2002 04:29 PM

Thanks Patti & ALF! It's good to know that even though it's the holiday season in Dec/Jan, it still won't be very crowded (at least my definition of crowded!). Do you know which areas Kiwis vacation during that time? So if we decide to go to those places, I can be sure to make reservations in advance?

Richard Jul 4th, 2002 08:55 AM

Hi Evelyn,<BR>I live in Christchurch and the end of November, beginning of December, is the time that we tend to tour New Zealand. We find the weather is generally settled, and the days warm, although the nights can be cool, especially in the South of the South Island. Having said that you should always expect rain in Fiordland, Stewart Island and the West Coast of the South Island. After all how else would we get those beautiful rain forests. Also, at this time, the schools have not yet broken for their summer holidays and accommodation is easier to find. After Christmas, a lot of Kiwis take their annual leave & accommodations can be a bit more difficult to find, especially in the more popular resorts. <BR>If you want recommendations for towns to visit, and attractions, especially in the South island, please let me know, via the forum, and I will do my best to comply.<BR>Before you do that though, you may wish to view the many photographs, of a recent South Island trip, that are held on 3 separate URL's, plus a travelogue. Contact me at the above mentioned email address.<BR>

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 06:54 AM.