Trip Report - AU & NZ

Jan 16th, 2006, 10:13 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 40
Trip Report - AU & NZ

All I can say is "New Zealand is heaven on earth". The 8 of us just returned from 5 days in Adelaide and 2-1/2 weeks in NZ. Adelaide is a great place to visit. Brighton Beach, Victor Harbor, wineries. Next trip - Kangaroo Island. Started the NZ portion in Christchurch (Chateau Blanc Suites)- what a gorgeous city. The Arts Centre is fabulous. Wish we had more then 1 day. Drove over Arthur's Pass, stopped at Devil's Punchbowl for a walk to the falls and visitor center, then on to Punakaiki. (3 [email protected] Watchers Retreat & Rock Villas) Very interesting area. Lots of easy walks, Truman Tramp was a fav - high and low tide. Off to the Nelson/Abel Tasman NP. WOW! (4 nights @Monaco Resort) We could have spent everyday in the NP. Wineries were delightful. Loved Waimea wines. Drove to Picton to the ferry. Blenhein would have been a town to explore, but didn't allow time. The ferry was great - smooth sailing all the way. Second half of trip was spent in Napier (3 [email protected] on Bluff Hill) and we loved the city. Art Deco Walk, Museum, strolling, fishing on the Motueka and Tuki Tuki. Headed inland to Turangi. (3 [email protected] Retreat) Fantastic accomodations right on the Tongariro River - best fishing of the trip. Did the Tongariro Crossing, Waitomo Black Water Rafting. Shopped in Taupo, but Turangi was a great place to stay and relax. Finished off the trip at Rotorua (Lake Plaza - avg., but convenient and reasonable)What an interesting place. Could have spent another day or so there. Last night in Auckland. I would have reversed the trip had I realized that Auckland was so busy.After three weeks of quiet country roads and one gorgeous vista after another - Auckland was culture shock. Back to reality.

Thanks to everyone who contributed directly or just wrote about their experiences, itineraries, etc. It enabled me to plan a trip for 4-50 year olds and their 4-20 yr old kids with plenty of options for everyone and a lifetime of memories. I won't do another trip without consulting FODORS!!
Fallrats is offline  
Jan 16th, 2006, 12:52 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 11,487
Thank you for posting your trip report; it sounds like you all had a wonderful time.

We felt the same way about Auckland, which was also our last stop. I would like to spend a couple of days there since I don't think we really gave it a fair shake.

Lee Ann
ElendilPickle is offline  
Jan 16th, 2006, 03:31 PM
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Posts: 15,477
Glad to hear you had such a good trip - thanks for posting.
Melnq8 is offline  
Jan 17th, 2006, 04:02 AM
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 468
I am so pleased that you went to Napier - it is my home town - just a great place often missed by tourists because it is out of the way!

I hope the weather was good ( it is miserable here in the UK!)

wilees is offline  
Jan 17th, 2006, 06:02 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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How were the Chateau Blanc Suites in CC? It looked good, but we stayed in a B&B.
Jed is offline  
Jan 17th, 2006, 08:46 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 40
The Chateau Blanc Suites were very nice. We were traveling with 8 so our TA booked the "penthouse" apt. It was fabulous and comparable in price to everything else we booked. Three levels - the top solarium was great at sunset. All the amenities, great breakfast and close to everything.
Fallrats is offline  
Jan 20th, 2006, 07:21 AM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 5,206
oh, it makes me long for new zealand...thanks for reminding me of the great memories esp of the south island.
escargot is offline  
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