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DracoArgentum
May 29, 2011


I will be heading to Auckland for three weeks this summer. I will be doing a work exchange so I will be living and working in the same place. I will likely have some time to look around, though. I have read that public transport is questionable at best. Would renting a car when I need it be best? I have an American drivers license, but I live and work in Japan so getting an international permit may be difficult (I also have a Japanese drivers license). I have no idea what there even IS in New Zealand, besides kiwi birds and sheep... Any thoughts and suggestions would be appreciated. Closer to Auckland the better.

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Chupe Raho Aurat
Jun 22, 2011
Probation
Can't post for 3 days!


We have the internet!!

From a certain point of view.

Anphear
Jan 20, 2008


Where in Auckland are you going to be staying vs where are you working, Aucklands transport system is alright but a little expensive, There are trains and buses from the burbs to the CBD but they are not that extensive like a major city in Japan. Drivers license will be simple as the Majority of cars here are Japanese Imports and we drive on left, same as Japan. I think you'll be able to get an international permit before you leave Japan. Renting a car should be to bad assuming you have somewhere to park at your accommodation and work most parts of the CBD have restrictions on where/when you can park.

Car rental is likey to be aroune $50 a day so about $1300 to $1400NZ for 22 days in a Toyota Yaris or similar. Assuming pick up and drop off at airport.

Remember that Summer for you is winter in NZ. While it wont be freezing in Auckland expect 11 - 14 C for a real cold terrible day and 19 to 24 for a glorious sunny one.

The internet here is 3rd world by Japanese standards. But yes it still works. There a number of things to do that are about 2.5 h drive from Auckland but it all depends how touristy you want to go. I cant help much here as I'm way further South.

Also the Dairy industry is massive here now and has far superseded sheep farming. Expect more cows.

DracoArgentum
May 29, 2011


Its a work exchange, so I will literally be living in the same place I am working. No transport needed (except to get there from the airport). Its more a question of going places on time off. I am not opposed to touristy stuff since it will be my first time in NZ. I like to check out food, history and traditional crafts when visiting areas. I have heard NZ is beautiful so some naturey stuff like waterfalls or such would also be cool. I am looking forward to getting away from the oppressive heat and humidity of summer in Japan so 14-24 sounds fabulous.

Tamarillo
Aug 6, 2009


Most of the naturey stuff is in the South Island - you're in the wrong spot. For Auckland I recommend getting a car, the public transportation is not fantastic and the city is basically built for cars.

Maybe Waiheke Island? It's quite close, and there's some touristy stuff and some historic stuff and some bushwalky stuff.

Backfiah
Sep 18, 2009


New Zealand is very small compared to the US, and flights are pretty cheap. You could easily fly to the South Island or Wellington for <$100 and have a look round for a weekend.

Click Beelay
Oct 13, 2011



I guess there's some pretty cool sesh spots around, we call one 'The Waterfall'.

Really though what do you like to do? Indoors or outdoors? Physically demanding or more goon friendly? Do you like history? Would you like to see living things or rather things that beep and you type on? Are you more looking to kill time or actually go out and see poo poo? It's difficult to gauge so this will help a bunch with us suggesting things. I have a mate who moved here from South Africa and before he got here he assumed we all lived in 'tee-pee like things in the bush, hey'.

DracoArgentum
May 29, 2011


Nothing too physically demanding, I don't want to go base jumping or anything. I like cultural stuff and history. Arts and crafts sorts of things too. Killing time or seeing things will probably both happen so both kinds of suggestions are welcome!

Click Beelay
Oct 13, 2011



DracoArgentum posted:

Nothing too physically demanding, I don't want to go base jumping or anything. I like cultural stuff and history. Arts and crafts sorts of things too. Killing time or seeing things will probably both happen so both kinds of suggestions are welcome!

Forgot about this thread. You've probably seen http://www.aucklandtourism.co.nz/

I can't stress that you need to be prepared for four seasons every day enough. I'm generally one to favour finding your own poo poo to do than pay a tour company but uhh do you enjoy any kind of weird sports because otherwise I'm not gonna seem that helpful

On a good day you could head to Tawharanui (surf beach near Auckland).

You could do a mission to Tiritiri Matangi

Historically we have Marae however I don't think you'd wanna mission half way down the country to my one but I found this. They're all over the place and as long as you have made arrangements are more than welcoming.

A popular spot growing up was Goat Island.

There's golf courses all over, if you enjoy rugby or league you can stop by pretty much any reserve on a not-lovely weekend and join in. Be more wary doing this in South Auckland and as I write this I'm realizing it may just be a North Shore thing.

There's the museum of transport and technology, http://www.motat.org.nz/

The Auckland Museum holds the largest annual ANZAC dawn service and remains pretty interesting throughout the rest of the year.

I've never been to this thing but it looks weird and interesting: http://www.fencible.org.nz/

Rent a kayak or borrow one and mission across the harbor, alternatively jetski from the City hugging the coast/harbor west up toward Albany and poo poo is good fun.

Found this Whale and Dolphin Safari

I'll leave it there for now, if you think you'll end up traveling around the North Island feel free to hit me up. My cousin works for a Waitomo glow worm tour thing which I still haven't been on, could be a laugh. For other ideas there's a million wineries, a fake snow place in Auckland but the mount's not too far away and it's loving awesome, jetboat rides and kitesurfing, hope some of this helps

danucleus
Nov 22, 2007
hmm

I did a two week car camping tour in South Island and it was one of the most beautiful places I've been to. Look into the world class white water rafting, glow warm cavern inner-tubing, sheep sheering, the amazing seafood, that craft truck guy who makes cool poo poo out of nothing, glacier climbing, Queenstown shenanigans, birds, beautiful hikes and etc.

DracoArgentum
May 29, 2011


Click Beelay posted:

I can't stress that you need to be prepared for four seasons every day enough. I'm generally one to favour finding your own poo poo to do than pay a tour company but uhh do you enjoy any kind of weird sports because otherwise I'm not gonna seem that helpful

You could do a mission to Tiritiri Matangi

Historically we have Marae however I don't think you'd wanna mission half way down the country to my one but I found this. They're all over the place and as long as you have made arrangements are more than welcoming.

A popular spot growing up was Goat Island.

There's the museum of transport and technology, http://www.motat.org.nz/

The Auckland Museum holds the largest annual ANZAC dawn service and remains pretty interesting throughout the rest of the year.

I've never been to this thing but it looks weird and interesting: http://www.fencible.org.nz/

Found this Whale and Dolphin Safari

I'll leave it there for now, if you think you'll end up traveling around the North Island feel free to hit me up. My cousin works for a Waitomo glow worm tour thing which I still haven't been on, could be a laugh. For other ideas there's a million wineries, a fake snow place in Auckland but the mount's not too far away and it's loving awesome, jetboat rides and kitesurfing, hope some of this helps

A bunch of those look really fun!

I have been looking at a lot of the snorkel/sea life sorts of things, but (and this might be a stupid question) is it too cold for that in August?

Another question I guess would be getting there. It's looking like renting a car is probably going to be my best option for at least some of the days, but I'm pretty hopeless without my GPS here, so anything that's going to take longer than directions I can memorize might be difficult... (Distance of course depends on how complicated the directions are).

Click Beelay
Oct 13, 2011



DracoArgentum posted:

A bunch of those look really fun!

I have been looking at a lot of the snorkel/sea life sorts of things, but (and this might be a stupid question) is it too cold for that in August?

Another question I guess would be getting there. It's looking like renting a car is probably going to be my best option for at least some of the days, but I'm pretty hopeless without my GPS here, so anything that's going to take longer than directions I can memorize might be difficult... (Distance of course depends on how complicated the directions are).

You can swim all year round, at least in the North Island. Whenever I'm in Southland I don't touch the water but I'm a humongous pussy in that regard according to family down there so ymmv. It will be colder in winter but not intolerably so!

The main highways are pretty good at getting you wherever you wanna go, but yeah I could imagine if you don't know the roads/aren't used to hills and corners (seriously is most of America just flat roads? It looks fun as tits and kind of like east coast Australia).

Wises and Google maps will be your friend, we all use them. IMO work out the three weeks rental cost and if it's a gently caress load just buy a pos '89 civic or something for a grand.

e; VVV go skiing on the alps, walk through Christchurch and check out the damage (roads were all kinds of hosed when I was there last year but could be fixed now if someone wants to confirm this), skydiving, wine drinking, sheep looking, maybe a southerner can chime in here. Expect cold and wet, but pack for four seasons every day. I'm not joking about this.

Click Beelay fucked around with this message at Jun 14, 2013 around 05:23

Abugadu
Jul 11, 2004

1st Sgt. Matthews and the men have Fashioned for me a cummerbund for my aptitude as a scuffler. i am Honored.

Anything that's a Must See on the South Island?

Also, what's the range of weather to expect in late October? (on both N and S Islands).

slinkimalinki
Jan 17, 2010

Through moonlight and shadow she'd prowl and she'd pry.


Abugadu posted:

Anything that's a Must See on the South Island?

Also, what's the range of weather to expect in late October? (on both N and S Islands).

I'd go see the glaciers on the West Coast. Spring should be well established in October, so expect sunny, warm weather. The weather in New Zealand is very changeable though, so always be prepared for colder weather.

TCD
Nov 13, 2002

Every step, a fucking adventure.


I did wine tasting around Auckland that was pretty fun. Tongariro Alpine Crossing was also one of our highlights in the North.

Tomkat
Jul 23, 2007

Tom Cruise <3 Katie Holmes.
Katie Holmes <3 Tom Cruise.


So I want to take a Lord of the Rings tour in New Zealand. Has anybody ever done it? Is it worth it? I've seen package prices range from $2500-4000. Do they give you a good amount of freetime to explore or is it a jam packed schedule where you're constantly going from location to location?

I really want to see the vast variety of geography of New Zealand. It seems like an absolutely beautiful place. I also love Lord of the Rings.

Please tell me.

NZAmoeba
Feb 14, 2005

It turns out it's MAN!


Tomkat posted:

So I want to take a Lord of the Rings tour in New Zealand. Has anybody ever done it? Is it worth it? I've seen package prices range from $2500-4000. Do they give you a good amount of freetime to explore or is it a jam packed schedule where you're constantly going from location to location?

I really want to see the vast variety of geography of New Zealand. It seems like an absolutely beautiful place. I also love Lord of the Rings.

Please tell me.

Depends a lot on what they're offering. I don't know about the National tours, but I know of at least a good one in Wellington: http://www.adventuresafari.co.nz/page4.html That's a whole day tour and fairly priced considering it's a whole day, I enjoyed it.

If it's a tour that just shows you locations near the cities, then you'd be better off with city specific tours, they'll probably be cheaper, and you can make your own way from city to city. If they travel into the depths of nowhere, then using a tour for that is your best option.

Link then and then maybe we can tell if they're a ripoff or not.

Tomkat
Jul 23, 2007

Tom Cruise <3 Katie Holmes.
Katie Holmes <3 Tom Cruise.


NZAmoeba posted:

Depends a lot on what they're offering. I don't know about the National tours, but I know of at least a good one in Wellington: http://www.adventuresafari.co.nz/page4.html That's a whole day tour and fairly priced considering it's a whole day, I enjoyed it.

If it's a tour that just shows you locations near the cities, then you'd be better off with city specific tours, they'll probably be cheaper, and you can make your own way from city to city. If they travel into the depths of nowhere, then using a tour for that is your best option.

Link then and then maybe we can tell if they're a ripoff or not.

I found this on the official New Zealand website:
http://www.airnewzealand.com/airfar...nd#middle-earth

I don't know which package I would choose, although the most expensive one seems to have most value. Since I don't know much about New Zealand, a package like this that outlines everything out seems like the easiest thing to do.

NZAmoeba
Feb 14, 2005

It turns out it's MAN!


Tomkat posted:

I found this on the official New Zealand website:
http://www.airnewzealand.com/airfar...nd#middle-earth

I don't know which package I would choose, although the most expensive one seems to have most value. Since I don't know much about New Zealand, a package like this that outlines everything out seems like the easiest thing to do.

It would be interesting to work out how much that would cost if you bought things individually, especially the accommodation, as hotels can be expensive and we have a lot of good quality hostels. But if it comes out to be more or less the same then I'd go for it as it would make the logistics a lot easier.

Spatule
Mar 18, 2003

I'M A WORTHLESS FAGGOT AND I HATE CANON.
SHOVEL HOT TAR INTO MY ANUS PLEASE.


We'll be visiting my wife's family in New Zealand in December/January.
You better believe if I have to fly 24hours I'm only doing it once and I want to see as much as possible of the amazing stuff there is to see...
Assuming an arrival in Auckland, what must we do / see in 2 or 3 weeks there ? There seems to be so much to choose from on most websites that it is hard to choose. The official stuff is not curated either of course.

NZAmoeba
Feb 14, 2005

It turns out it's MAN!


Spatule posted:

We'll be visiting my wife's family in New Zealand in December/January.
You better believe if I have to fly 24hours I'm only doing it once and I want to see as much as possible of the amazing stuff there is to see...
Assuming an arrival in Auckland, what must we do / see in 2 or 3 weeks there ? There seems to be so much to choose from on most websites that it is hard to choose. The official stuff is not curated either of course.

That depends entirely on what things interest you, and how much time you have to spend with family. Also bare in mind that Dec/Jan is the time when all of New Zealand goes on holiday. Literally every office job goes on mandatory holiday from about Dec 24th till Jan 10th or so, so everything will be booked out and busy. You'll want to make reservations as early as possible. Preferably now.

Spatule
Mar 18, 2003

I'M A WORTHLESS FAGGOT AND I HATE CANON.
SHOVEL HOT TAR INTO MY ANUS PLEASE.


NZAmoeba posted:

That depends entirely on what things interest you, and how much time you have to spend with family. Also bare in mind that Dec/Jan is the time when all of New Zealand goes on holiday. Literally every office job goes on mandatory holiday from about Dec 24th till Jan 10th or so, so everything will be booked out and busy. You'll want to make reservations as early as possible. Preferably now.

I did not think about the holidays as here everybody leaves the country a that time, drat. We don't need to spend much time with the family, 3 days max.
Things we like: nature (hiking for example, or natural wonders), visiting museums (with old/unusual stuff, not art), architecture (eg cityscapes), food (incl. learning how to cook it), visiting cities by bike, hot spring/spa resort things, island hopping with a boat to go scuba diving, stargazing, canyoning
Don't like: zoos, aquariums, lying on a beach, amusement parks

NZAmoeba
Feb 14, 2005

It turns out it's MAN!


Spatule posted:

I did not think about the holidays as here everybody leaves the country a that time, drat. We don't need to spend much time with the family, 3 days max.
Things we like: nature (hiking for example, or natural wonders), visiting museums (with old/unusual stuff, not art), architecture (eg cityscapes), food (incl. learning how to cook it), visiting cities by bike, hot spring/spa resort things, island hopping with a boat to go scuba diving, stargazing, canyoning
Don't like: zoos, aquariums, lying on a beach, amusement parks

Nature
Coming out of our arse. Plenty of Great Walks, use this to find an appropriate track for the kind of challenge/scenery you're looking for, in whatever area you happen to find yourself in: http://www.doc.govt.nz/parks-and-re...acks-and-walks/ Just be warned that while we don't have any dangerous animals, the environment itself can still murder you.

Museums
Both Auckland War Memorial and Te Papa (Wellington) have pretty good pre and post-colonial Maori exhibits. But there's nothing in NZ that's old by any comparative standard.

Architecture
Not really, we have some nice looking buildings but nothing worth travelling over to see. NZ isn't the place for this

Food
It's hard to find a bad place to eat, especially in Wellington. However there isn't much in the way of capital 'L' Local cuisine. NZs cuisine is entirely influenced by international immigration. Heck back in the early 80s we were a cultural backwater, but eventually smarter immigrants learnt that we can grow/produce amazingly good quality ingredients here, so everything is both farmed right, and farmed local. We had an American hanging with my group of goon friends for little bit, and at one point he was super excited to cook and eat his first grass fed steak. We had no idea you could feed a cow anything else. Also our sea food and shellfish is the best around, what with our fairly pollution free waters. We also farm Salmon here that I'm told is way better than the farmed stuff you get in North America, due to us not having to pump them full of anti-biotics, as there's no wild population of salmon for them to contend with.

Cities by Bike
I'm not an expert on this, but I imagine Auckland would be pretty horrible to bike outside of the Mission Bay area. NZ is a notoriously hilly place, so mountain biking is awesome, but leisurely biking a bit limited.

Hot Spring/Spa
The super easy answer to this one is Rotorua, which is a city built on a thermal zone. The whole town smells of eggs, it's kinda neat. It does mean it's prone to the occasional hot spring appearing in someone's backyard when the ground suddenly gives way. But there's lots of thermal places across the country, such as Hot Water Beach on the Coromandel (a region worth visiting for it's scenery, and pretty close to Auckland), or Hamner Springs in the South Island. Also Waiwera just north of Auckland.

Island hopping and Scuba
Bay of Islands isn't far from Auckland, definitely worth a few days. There's also the Marlborough Sounds, which is south, so probably a fair bit colder. But there is a neat USSR cruise ship wreck there if that's what you're into. Goat Island is also near Auckland and was our first marine reserve. Apparently very good diving there.

Stargazing
We have an official Dark Sky place at Lake Tekapo, which also has some amazing scenery and is a cute little town.

Canyoning
I've done this both at the Waitakere ranges in Auckland, and in Queenstown. But this is an activity available anywhere there's big hills and water, which in NZ is practically everywhere. Great fun.

The Don't Likes
Zoos, ours aren't anything too special, but they probably represent your best chance to actually see a Kiwi (which is both rare and nocturnal). Aquariums, Kelly Tarltons in Auckland is actually worth a visit, if only for the penguins alone, but there's undoubtedly better ones in the world. Lying on the beach, our beaches are better suited to surfing in and walking along. Go check out the black sand beaches on Auckland's west coast. Bethells/Te Henga is my personal favourite because it has a massive black sand dune you can wander around on. Amusement Parks, lol, we have one and it's a butt of many jokes.

NZAmoeba fucked around with this message at Jul 7, 2013 around 08:55

Tamarillo
Aug 6, 2009


NZAmoeba posted:

Amusement Parks, lol, we have one and it's a butt of many jokes.

Seriously this - you'll probably fly over it as you come into Auckland Airport. Look out for the tiny rollercoaster and prepare to laugh yourself silly.

Also if you're into wildlife n' poo poo, the Mt Bruce wildlife reserve is 2 hours north of Wellington so you can stop there on the way from Auckland if you're driving. They have all the kiwi you could shake a stick at, and generally right up close (and maybe even get to take a look at Manukura, the white kiwi http://www.pukaha.org.nz/manukura-little-white-kiwi)

DracoArgentum
May 29, 2011


Just arrived in Auckland. I have some things on my list that I'd like to do. Spookers, a few waterfalls, Hobbiton, things like that. Unfortunately my list is still too short! My camera decided to break on the way here, evidently, so as I will have to replace that money is becoming more of an obstacle than I had originally planned. I have a rental car, so at least transport isn't too much of a worry. So, lords of the internet, please tell me:
A. Relatively inexpensive things to do in/relatively close to Auckland.
B. A good place to buy a camera in Auckland

NZAmoeba
Feb 14, 2005

It turns out it's MAN!


DracoArgentum posted:

Just arrived in Auckland. I have some things on my list that I'd like to do. Spookers, a few waterfalls, Hobbiton, things like that. Unfortunately my list is still too short! My camera decided to break on the way here, evidently, so as I will have to replace that money is becoming more of an obstacle than I had originally planned. I have a rental car, so at least transport isn't too much of a worry. So, lords of the internet, please tell me:
A. Relatively inexpensive things to do in/relatively close to Auckland.
B. A good place to buy a camera in Auckland

If you're doing Hobbiton, I advise finding a backpackers hostel in that area and spending a couple days so that you can make day trips to Rotorua, Waitomo, and Taupo. These are places that are definitely worth seeing, and are within a day trip from Auckland, but the amount of time you'd spend going back and forth would be better spent just being there already.

For Rotorua, my favourite thermal area is Wai-O-Tapu, but just even Rotorua's central park is quite impressive and obviously free.

Back in Auckland, visit the west coast beaches, for dramatic coastlines, black sand, and rough seas. Bethells is a personal favourite, just make sure you check out and walk across the big sand dune that's there (it's a little bit before the beach itself)

I already posted in the other NZ thread about the camera, but yeah, electronic poo poo is not cheap here, so depending on how long you're around for, making do with a cheap replacement may have to do. Try finding a specialist store on queen st, and if you're lucky they may be able to repair?

Abugadu
Jul 11, 2004

1st Sgt. Matthews and the men have Fashioned for me a cummerbund for my aptitude as a scuffler. i am Honored.

We're renting a camper and doing a week on the South Island. Is it possible to go from Picton, down the west side and back up to Christchurch within a week, or should we just plan to make it to Queenstown?

Edit: late October

NZAmoeba
Feb 14, 2005

It turns out it's MAN!


Abugadu posted:

We're renting a camper and doing a week on the South Island. Is it possible to go from Picton, down the west side and back up to Christchurch within a week, or should we just plan to make it to Queenstown?

Edit: late October

Yes, you won't get to stop and do everything but you'd see a reasonable amount. This is also assuming the furthest south you go is Queenstown, with maybe a day-trip to Milford Sound involved.

Saint Fu
Sep 27, 2007
hit 'em with the rhythm make 'em feelin alright now

Is it reasonable to expect to be able to hike the Tongariro Alpine Crossing track in mid October without snow shoes / crampons?

NZAmoeba
Feb 14, 2005

It turns out it's MAN!


Saint Fu posted:

Is it reasonable to expect to be able to hike the Tongariro Alpine Crossing track in mid October without snow shoes / crampons?

No, it'll still probably be covered in snow, and it's highly highly recommended you do it with a guide.

I used these guys, and I recommend them: http://adventureoutdoors.co.nz/#/to...nter/4569766115

They supply all the gear you don't have on you, as part of the price, and also handle the transport (you start and finish at different sides of the mountain). I did the crossing in July a couple years back and it was awesome.

Saint Fu
Sep 27, 2007
hit 'em with the rhythm make 'em feelin alright now

Thanks for the recommendation. Did you go on a guided group or personal? If it was a group, about how many people were there? Personal hiking guides aren't such a big thing in the states (or at least I've never used one). I wouldn't want to be herded along with a large group.

NZAmoeba
Feb 14, 2005

It turns out it's MAN!


Saint Fu posted:

Thanks for the recommendation. Did you go on a guided group or personal? If it was a group, about how many people were there? Personal hiking guides aren't such a big thing in the states (or at least I've never used one). I wouldn't want to be herded along with a large group.

With a group, there were maybe about 30 people, but they split that into smaller groups of 10, with a guide each. Never really got the impression of being herded along, and the guides were great to chat to.

Markoff Chaney
May 29, 2002

Because.


Tomkat posted:

So I want to take a Lord of the Rings tour in New Zealand. Has anybody ever done it? Is it worth it? I've seen package prices range from $2500-4000. Do they give you a good amount of freetime to explore or is it a jam packed schedule where you're constantly going from location to location?

I really want to see the vast variety of geography of New Zealand. It seems like an absolutely beautiful place. I also love Lord of the Rings.

Please tell me.

We're going to be doing this next month http://redcarpet-tours.com/full-tou...lord-rings-tour

I'll post a full trip report when we get back, but the schedule looks pretty jam-packed with small pockets of time here and there where you're left to your own devices. Note that the exorbitant price does include all lodging, transport, and some meals, but does not include airfare for obvious reasons so make sure you factor that cost in when planning.

Saros
Dec 29, 2009

Its almost like we're a Bureaucracy, in space!

I set sail for the Planet of Lab Requisitions!!

$5000 each is bloody expensive. I guess you really love LOTR or something?

Honestly about half the places they list you visiting are kind of boring and not even particularly spectacular as far as scenery goes, the only thing that makes them stand out is the LOTR connection. Are you staying longer than that as it looks like you end up in Queenstown (which is nice, if expensive) so you should really really at least have a day to go visit Milford sound.

Markoff Chaney
May 29, 2002

Because.


Saros posted:

$5000 each is bloody expensive. I guess you really love LOTR or something?

Honestly about half the places they list you visiting are kind of boring and not even particularly spectacular as far as scenery goes, the only thing that makes them stand out is the LOTR connection. Are you staying longer than that as it looks like you end up in Queenstown (which is nice, if expensive) so you should really really at least have a day to go visit Milford sound.

I like LOTR but not *that* much. However, my girlfriend is completely bonkers about it and this is the trip of a lifetime for her. How interesting a place is is not necessarily the prime concern, it's the degree to which it was involved with LOTR (for her). We're not staying much after the tour ends, being out for two and a half weeks is already a bit much for us americans, chained to our desks like we are.

Regardless, if NZ is as awesome as I think it is (which is drat awesome) I'm sure we'll be back someday on a less purpose oriented trip. And while it's stupidly expensive we aren't paying 5k each, we're on the non-premium tour and when we bought back in march the prices were lower. The other factor in us chartering a tour of NZ as opposed to vacationing elsewhere is that
1) she's pretty skittish about going to non-english speaking countries since english is our native tongue (despite her also speaking french and japanese and me also speaking spanish).
2) the tour takes care of all lodging and driving so it's easy mode and we don't have to drive on the opposite side of the street that we're used to.
3) she thinks it will be super fun to do the LOTR tour with a bunch of other LOTR super-nerds. I mostly plan on drinking a lot and enjoying the scenery/culture.

We ain't rich, but if it's for her dream trip we can dip into the savings

My main concern is not killing myself during the flights there/back, 14 hours is about 3x longer than the longest plane ride I've ever done

Click Beelay
Oct 13, 2011



Markoff Chaney posted:

I mostly plan on drinking a lot and

You will enjoy it here

Saros
Dec 29, 2009

Its almost like we're a Bureaucracy, in space!

I set sail for the Planet of Lab Requisitions!!

I hope you like looking at grass, there will be lots and lots of grass.

Check out the New Zealand thread. There are a bunch of goons around, mostly in Auckland/Wellington though.

quote:

'she thinks it will be super fun to do the LOTR tour with a bunch of other LOTR super-nerds'

I actually can't think of anything worse.

I am serious about making time for Milford sound however, it's probably the top scenery in the country and it's close to Queenstown.

uraninjs
Sep 26, 2010


Markoff Chaney posted:

My main concern is not killing myself during the flights there/back, 14 hours is about 3x longer than the longest plane ride I've ever done

If you're flying Air New Zealand they have excellent in-flight entertainment. You should be more worried about jet lag and leg cramps. Take advantage of the wine, watch a movie, and then try your best to sleep. When you get there don't take a nap during the day and go to bed early the first night. You should be good to go after that.

sellouts
Apr 23, 2003



I'm stopping over in Auckland for 2 days on my way from Sydney to Hong Kong. I land dec 25 and leave mid day the 27th. I assume the 25th will be a wash considering it is Christmas but what about the 26th?

Is it worth renting a car and driving to the Waitomo glow worm caves and seeing some countryside outside of the city?

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NZAmoeba
Feb 14, 2005

It turns out it's MAN!


sellouts posted:

I'm stopping over in Auckland for 2 days on my way from Sydney to Hong Kong. I land dec 25 and leave mid day the 27th. I assume the 25th will be a wash considering it is Christmas but what about the 26th?

Is it worth renting a car and driving to the Waitomo glow worm caves and seeing some countryside outside of the city?

Both Xmas day and Boxing day (the 26th) are public holidays.

It's going to be confusing because a bunch of stuff is going to be closed, but there'll also be a lot of stuff open for holiday makers. Heck the whole period from Xmas to a week after new years is when all office jobs shut down completely and everyone is forced to go on holiday, but there's still an expectation that people in the service sector will still be around because who else is going to make my flat white?

Your best bet will be to plan ahead and call the particular places you want to visit and ask them explicitly if they're open xmas day/boxing day. And don't assume anything else will be open except probably petrol stations. A couple years back I was taking a car trip during Easter, and stopped into a petrol station to pick up something for lunch, but the section where they'd normally sell sandwiches was almost completely bare because they hadn't taken any recent deliveries from wherever they were made.

But yeah Waitomo is definitely worth a trip, and Rotorua if you can swing it.

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