[Actual Journey] 7 weeks in New Zealand revisited

Plans are nothing until you execute it. Looking at the grand plan for New Zealand I’ve written 2 months ago and the eventual route I’ve taken, many has stayed the same, while many has changed as well. There are places that I unfortunately missed out, and places that I definitely want to re-visit again. This post shall be about the journey I’ve taken, and the places I would want to visit if I ever return to New Zealand. (:

Let’s first take a look at the route I’ve eventually taken across New Zealand.

New Zealand North Island route

North Island

New Zealand South Island route

South Island

How I travelled 5000km across New Zealand

In a country which the distance from North to South is 1400km (Cape Reinga to Bluff), I travelled over 5000km throughout the country. The majority of of the distance was covered through hitchhiking (2000km), and through car-sharing (1800km). The rest was covered by buses and of course, the Cook Strait ferry from Wellington to Picton.

In a separate post, I shall be sharing about the various transport means I took in New Zealand. In case you’re wondering what I’m doing at Takaka Hills and Clinton, 2 places which does not seem familiar on the travelling trail, I was attending a hippie festival and working at an organic farm respectively.

Places I wished I had time to visit

Despite spending almost 2 months in New Zealand, its kinda sad that there are still so many places that I have yet to see! If I ever had the chance to return to New Zealand again, here’s where I would go:

  • Waiheke Island, Aucklandheard its beaches are really pretty!
  • Coromandelhow could I have missed the Hot Water Beach and Cathedral Cove…
  • Mt Taranaki, New Plymouthsnow topped mountain located beside the sea
  • East Capeone of the most isolated areas of NZ with rugged and spectacular coastlines
  • White Island, Bay of Plentya still-active volcano!
  • Matamata (and other LOTR places)where the Hobbiton in LOTR was filmed
  • Nelsonone of the biggest cities in South Island, but I skipped it completely while making my way to Luminate Festival
  • Marlborough Region - gotta check out the extensive vineyards and do some wine tasting
  • Abel Tasmandespite being at Takaka, I didn’t get to kayak at the beautiful coast
  • Arthur’s Passheard there are some nice tracks and different greenery there
  • Fox GlacierFranz Josef Glacier wasn’t enough for me :P
  • Doubtful Soundmuch bigger, grander and quieter than Milford Sound
  • Hanmer Springshot springs are always good (:
  • Kaikoura - if I had more money, I would have done a swimming with dolphins tour!
  • Mount Cook Villagea pity I didn’t get to see Mount Cook up close
  • Central Otagowould have been fun if I did the Central Otago Rail Trail through desert-like terrain
  • Oamarumore wildlife watching and I heard the town is a charming one as well

Places I want to visit again!

Some places are not meant to be visited only once. These are some places I would die to go back again if I ever return to New Zealand.

  • Queenstowncobalt blue skies, crystal clear lake, remarkable mountain range, charming little English town. no reason not to love this place. And next time round, I would be jumping 134m down Nevis bungy. (:
  • Lake Tekapothe scenery is spectacular, especially on a perfect day where you can see the snow-capped mountains
  • Lake MathesonI still want my perfect reflection of Mount Cook on the still lake
  • Akaroaboard a cruise to see the cute Hector dolphins, hopefully with a better weather
  • The Catlinsstop by more of the small scenic stops, and visit the cute yellow-eyed penguins again!
  • Wanaka - only spent a night here, I’m pretty sure there’s much more to see!
  • Tongariro Alpine Crossingwould love to walk this amazing track once again, despite its difficulty
  • Ninety Mile Beachif I have a suitable car, it would be awesome speeding through this endless beach

What do you think of my trip? What are some of the places I should have gone, or spend more time at instead? Let me know in the comments below! (: