I was just reading a post on Nomadic Matt’s website about his 8 years of travelling and a hike up the Tongariro Crossing in New Zealand.
This led me to thinking about how fab New Zealand is – as a self drive holiday with kids-no matter what time of year. It has so much to offer between the long distances, when travelling from one place to the next. There is so much to discover along the way.
I had no idea what this would be like for any of us. Let alone if we would enjoy it or want to keep going. We had a rough idea of the things we wanted to try – structure was provided by our flight itinerary. Everything else was flexible. Although being on the road was no different in some ways than being at home. Working out the finances and what we needed and wanted to spend our money on – in substance was no different than living within society in the UK. The huge difference was – we were all included. Although there were sacrifices made, we were on the road.
I was out of the house – travelling – IN MY LIFE!!! The thing I like to do the best and still caring for my family in the process. For me it was ideal!
What is your ideal?
Now, our trip in NZ spanned both North and South Islands and lasted two months. If I only had 3 weeks to a month, I personally would still choose the South Island to travel through. Although the north has many great, different adventures. I fell in love with the less populated and slightly colder island and this country in its winter months.
For me – it’s the walking tracks and trails that grabbed my attention. Driving for around 4 hours a day-if you did this without stopping would be no fun at all but in New Zealand – as you drive along NZ State highways – you come across signs and stop points directing you to an allsort of natural wonder.
Ship Creek, Haast
on the west coast-is one of the wildest beaches I’ve ever stood upon in mid winter. It offers you an experiential understanding of the isolation, which living on the island of New Zealand can offer, but also is an amazing place for the kids to run free.
Only a one hour 40 minute drive from Wanaka – it makes for a splendidly dramatic stop point with plenty of fantail birds twittering around to entice. Getting the kids out of the car and climbing the observation tower offers great views of the swamp forest behind you and with two signposted walks to choose from, you can enjoy either the swamp forest walk – winding through kahikatea trees and lasting approximately 20 minutes or venture down the lake dune walk – a wind shorn coastal forest. Which will last around 30 minutes.
Travelling with kids, for me – is all about getting them out of the car. Even though you need to be in it. This is family time from my point of view. Physical exertion is so important to a persons well-being and mental health. In our attempt to create a healthy society – we manage to impact on ourselves by removing the very important physicalness of everyday living which is needed to do it.
A self drive holiday in New Zealand can put you directly in touch with the feelings, emotions, energy and physicalness needed to break out of a societal routine and all, if you desire with a great hotel at the end of a long day.
Where would you like to go on a Self-Drive holiday?