New Zealand

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This month we had 10 days in New Zealand before flying to Australia for the last 20 days.  We knew that Australia was going to be expensive, quite possibly the most expensive country we would visit.  For our monthly expenses we were hoping for around $200 a day, but went over quite a bit.  This was mostly for one reason, a campervan fiasco that we will tell you about soon.  This issue cost us nearly $2000 and about $1500 is reflected in this month’s budget.  Fuel was considerably cheaper in Australia, about a $1 less a liter, but camping so far has been more expensive (Under $30 in New Zealand to close to $40/night in Australia).  Continue Reading

New Zealand has taken the honor of being the “Nicest Place” we’ve ever been.  Not only for its amazing scenery, but also for its people. We have truly lived the dream here and below is just a little wrap up and ten things we learned and loved about New Zealand, the land of the Kiwi (which is a fruit, a bird, and a person). Continue Reading

One of the many construction sites

One of the many construction sites

Our New Zealand trip ended in the remarkable city of Christchurch.  A city that in February of 2011 was rocked by a devastating earthquake that left much of the city and its many historical buildings crippled in its wake.  What we expected to see when we got to Christchurch was not at all what we saw. Although there has been a lot of progress, it hasn’t happened as fast as you would think.  Unfortunately the insurance companies are not working at an acceptable speed, as we all know they’re not in the business of losing money.  Continue Reading

 

Kaikoura

Kaikoura seal hanging out on the sea wall

Since we were ahead of schedule due to our quick tour of the west coast we decided to head north of Chistchurch to Kaikoura.  We made 2 uneventful stops for the night along the way, one in Geraldine and one in Gore Bay before making it up to Kaikoura for 2 nights.

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Mount Cook and Hooker Glacier

Mount Cook and Hooker Glacier

We switched up the itinerary a little bit and drove to Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park.  We wanted to see the tallest peak in all of New Zealand along with other beautiful mountains and a majestic valley carved by two separate glaciers.  Mount Cook or Aoraki (translated from the native Maori language meaning “cloud piercer”) stands just over 12,300 feet (3754 meters) above sea level.  Not a huge mountain by the world’s standards, but a fierce one none the less.  Continue Reading