New Zealand

lilo

Member
Hi there,
seems like everyone is njoying themselves at NZ. i cant wait to go ter nxt yr too. Can any kind souls share with me ur F&E itinenary at [email protected] I would appreciate ur help as im quite clueless abt wr to go. Thanks.
 


claerwen

New Member
Hi folks,

If u're looking for a hotel in Queenstown, do try Aspen on Queenstown. It offers fascinating views of Lake Wakatipu & the Remarkable Ranges in their lake view rooms. Was an unforgettable experience for us. Do chk out their website at www.queenstownhotel.com.

Happy planning!
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sputnik

New Member
Hi,

Just something to share. If you are planning to visit the glow worm caves and you are going to North Island, the caves at Waitomo are much much better than the ones at Te Anau - speaking from personal experience since I visited both.
At Waitomo, I joined this 3 hour day trip which brings you to a less accessible but very spectacular glow worm cave that the usual mass market tour groups do not visit.
You can check out the tour's site at: http://www.waitomospellbound.co.nz
 

cosmicice

New Member
Hi Claerwen & Sputnik,

Thanks for sharing. Me planning for a self-drive trip to New Zealand soon too but will only be visiting the South Island 'coz it's more interesting. Heard from my friends & some colleagues who've been there & they all have good reviews abt the glow worm caves at Te Anau too. Heard the tour was very interesting & the caves & glowworms there were really fascinating. It's also a must-visit in South Island too, so me gonna go for it..
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North Island will probably go on my next visit... hee.
 

chendol

New Member
Hi everyone,

Didn't sign up at the Chan Bros fair in the end.. only need to go in March and the departure dates are not ideal, one week after my wedding... so what am I supposed to do? go back to work for one week before going on honeymoon? dowan lah...

I think I'll go on a tour, cos only FH can drive, and don't want to stress him. A colleague recently advised me not to do a driving trip for honeymoon cos might be stressful and create unnecessary friction.

Definitely intending to go south island -- queenstown, milford sound, glowworm caves... and I hope I can do Zorbing!! that's going into this huge plastic ball and rolling down a hill. Dunno whether they have it in south island? Interested in farmstay as well. only thing is that the flight is so long, so already spend at least 2 days flying there and back right?
 

kerenelu

New Member
twinkle,

Did u catch globe trekker at SCV travel&living channel 7 pm last nite? Ian Wright actually went to NZ and ya, he was in the plastic ball u mentioned!!! And the ball rolled until he blur! Haha.. he mentioned something like gotta pay to make urself giddy. I can't remember now whether he was in North or SOuth when he did that. I think it is SOuth??

I joined dynasty travel and flying off in dec. What happens is we will depart in the late evening on Sat nite and reach there sun morning. Then come back to singapore the following sat afternoon and land in singapore on sat night. I think so ba.

Why not u check with dynasty travel? So far i joined their trips for melbourne and perth, all very good!!! I dun really like chan brothers myself as i joined them before for sydney/gold coast trip and dun find their package as attractive as what dynasty travel or SA tours offers.
 

kerenelu

New Member
Tots,

U are not too bad liao.. u know i went back to work immediately after wedding?? That was the second day after wedding!! I held my customary wedding in October, and only went melbourne for honeymmon in december! Delayed by 1.5 mths haha..
 

chng

New Member
Ops...I should be sharing my sob sob story with twinkle, not KK...

Haha...KK, I guess u are already rewarded with a good honeymoon, rite? Kekeke....
 

chendol

New Member
aiyoh... really wun have mood to go back to work after wedding leh... ok thanks KK I'll go and check dynasty travel. maybe with less advertisements and freebies they'll be cheaper too!
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Tots- I've had friends who did that also, delayed by half a year cos both hubby and wife couldn't take leave that coincided!
 

kerenelu

New Member
Tots,

I am awarded with honeymoon every year haha! Except last year dec when i was pregnant. Didn't go anywhere that time except cruise.

twinkle,

Dynasty travel not really cheap haha.. i dunno about chanbrothers package. U got the prices for their NZ packages? Then can compare and contrast.

But now no more travel fairs and promotions le.. dunno how expensive it is.
 

chendol

New Member
I think chan brothers about 2388 for 10 or 11 days... but think 2 days taken for flight right?

yah, dunno whether to sign up during fair.... hopefully will have another one in dec or january for those who want to travel to escape CNY? not sure...
 

claerwen

New Member
Hi Twinkle,

Zorbing is only available in Rotorua, North Island. We wanted to try zorbing too when we visited NZ at that time but we only went to the South Island so no chance to try it out. My friends who've tried it told me it was really fun, full of adrenaline rush! It's one activity u shldn't miss if u're visiting the North Island.

We've planned to visit the North island in another 2 yrs time when my kid is slightly older so she can get a chance to go for the Kids Zorb also..
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kerenelu

New Member
twinkle,

So cheap???? Dynasty travel $2748 for 8 days South trip leh!!

I guess their fairs always close to NATAS, which is around march and september?
 

chendol

New Member
my friend was saying should just book one of those daily departure type things then you can go to NZ anytime and join in their tours on an ad hoc basis. he just did that recently for his honeymoon. apparently got the 'package' from a chinatown travel agent. the plus is that you get different travel buddies on each leg. no need to be stuck with a bunch of singaporean aunties. :p
 

kerenelu

New Member
twinkle,

That's true. Those hop on coach tours are very memorable as they tend to cover spots which may not be covered by tour packages offered by our local singapore agents. I did that for my trip to Philip Island when honeymooning in melbourne
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baguana_gal

New Member
Hi All,

I am leaving for NZ on the 8th Nov. Just to check how much cash did you all bring for a NZ 15 day self drive trip? We are concern about bringing too much cash around. Are credit card payment and ATM machine widely available in NZ?

Need some advice!!!! thank you
 

claerwen

New Member
Hi Baguana,

Yes, credit card payment & ATM machines are widely available in NZ. U can also purchase travellers cheques from the banks here. They're equivalent to the actual cash value so u dun hv to bring too much cash ard. U only need to cater sufficient cash for daily neccessities such as water, food, parking.. etc. So, u'll hv to do an estimate of how much cash u'll need in this area for the period u'll be there (depending on ur budget).

And most of the merchants there do accept travellers cheques so it's really convenient & hassle-free. For those who do not, u just need to encash the cheques (for cash) with the local bank there. Hope it helps!
 

chendol

New Member
I'm so psyched up about seeing glow worms that I just might go north island to see the waitomo ones. maybe since can do zorbing there might be worth flying to north island... after all if I've flown so far there might as well see both....
 

baguana_gal

New Member
thanks Claerwen!

How is the cost of living like there? Per meal on average how much to spend? Is petrol expensive there?


I have paid up for all my accomodation already. Just worried that certain activities need more money like deer park etc.
 

claerwen

New Member
Hi Baguana,

No prob. NZ Dollars has gone up so much more as compared to 4 yrs back when we went there, so things will be more costly now. At that time, 1 NZD is only ard 0.83 SGD, but now it has gone up to 1.04 if I'm not wrong. But still, it's not as high as compared to Aussie..
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Food wise, it all depends on where & what u eat. For e.g, a simple cafe lunch like fish & chips or pasta will cost ard NZ$10-$15 & a cup of cappucino will cost ard NZ$2.50-$3. And if ur hotel provides complimentary breakfast, then u can also save quite a bit on that. Otherwise, u ca always go for simple continental breakfast like bread & cereals which usually costs less than NZ$10 or so.

Petrol cost have also gone up quite a fair bit. From what I know, it cost ard NZ$1.6 per litre now. Back then, it's so much cheaper, I think only NZ$1.05-$1.2 but can't recall exactly how much cos it's been quite some time back oredi..
happy.gif


Anyway, hope it helps. If u need further info, can always visit:
www.tourism.net.nz
www.newzealand.com

Have a great trip!
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kerenelu

New Member
Hi All,

The tour agency called me to say the group for 8 Days South Island is withdrawn due to poor response. So i am departing earlier now, on 30 november on a 10 Days North + South trip. The South itinerary will be the same as the previous one. For North, will be spending 2 days there - Rotorua and Auckland. Will then be covering waitomo glow worm cave as well as the Whakarewarewa Geothermal Valley
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bellybuttony

New Member
hi everyone! i'll be going for my NZ trip from 1-16 dec. doing south island only. will be going to the usual places...but will be skipping the nelson-blenheim-kaikoura regions..and oso dunedin. not enuff time! hehe.

wld like to ask for a motel recommendation in the Fox Glacier region pls? was eyeing on Rainforest Motel, but it's fully booked. sigh. for dec period...really better to book early - like now.
 

bellybuttony

New Member
hi Tots,
wld like to ask if the Glow Worm Forest is worth going? I'll be going for the Te Anau Glow Worm Caves Tour...but thot dat since in Fox nothing to do at nite...might as well go see the Glow Worm Forest too. ;p
 

chng

New Member
Hi ash,

In my opinion if u r staying in hotel near the glow worm forest (Just opposite a BP petrol station at Fox) can just go since it's so cheap though u been to the Te Anau Cave, also nothing much to do at nite so go with yr hubby take it as a cooling stroll.
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sputnik

New Member
Hi,

When I was at North Island a few weeks back, the petrol price was abt NZD$1.44 - NZD$1.45. depending on where you are. Better to buy in big cities cos it gets more expensive if you are in the ulu places.

Remember to try the fish and chips when you are in NZ. It is really cheap and good. Especially if you buy from those fish and chip places which sell seafood as well, the fish is very fresh. When you buy from those takeaway places, can get a good meal for less than NZD$8.

KK, glad to hear that you are going to Waitomo. There are quite a few glow worm caves in that area, try and go for those which are not usually visited by the tour groups, these caves are much better. Also, near the Waitomo caves is this place called the Shearing Shed, you can see big and fluffy angora rabbits, and watch them being shaved. They are really cute and the shearing process is really quite entertaining.
 

kerenelu

New Member
Hi Ladies,

Need to find out from u all.. if i wanna try out activities like heli ride, guided walk at fox glacier, milford sound coach + cruise, etc.. do i need to pay upfront cash or can pay by credit card at the offices there?

I need to budget a bit, see how much NZ cash to bring
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little_a

Active Member
hi kk, u can pay for it using credit card. However, i paid using cash.

There isn't much things to buy there.. maybe honey.. and soft-toys
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kerenelu

New Member
Thanks lyesha
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I already have "orders" for manuka honey and lonalin creme. And recently a relative ask for kiwi candies haha.. other than that, i try to control myself not to buy anything else. I do have a craze for magnets though :p
 

little_a

Active Member
kk, i bought quite a no. of t-shirts :0 lots of soft-toys and honey
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spent most of the money in casinos (lost quite a lot too
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) and food
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I simply fall in love with NZ .. this is one place I will definitely go back again..
 

kerenelu

New Member
Any comments on these NZ hotels? We will be staying in them:

Christchurch - Grand Chancellor

Fox Glacier - Glacier Country Hotel

Queenstown - A-Line Hotel

Dunedin - Dunedin City Hotel

Rotorua - Sudima Hotel Lake Plaza

Auckland - Sky City Hotel
 

little_a

Active Member
Hi kk, maybe i could email u my itinerary... I did not stay in the hotels you have listed so no comments... but if you are going to kaikuora..definitely have to book the accomodation. The rooms were fully booked when i was there last dec..

As you travel towards the south pole.. the temperature gets colder.
 

chng

New Member
Hi KK,

Grand Chancellor at Christchurch is GOOD! It's the better bed that I got to sleep on at the few hotels that I have stayed in, also it's near many shops and F&B outlets. The rest that you have listed didn't try though.
 

kerenelu

New Member
Tots,

The hotels that we stayed in when we went Perth and Southwest were superb! So i am looking forward to good ones this time too
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Grand Chancellor in Perth is terrible!!! Small, and without any view.
 

chng

New Member
Ops kk,

Grand Chancellor NZ gotta no good view too! But for me cos after a tired day of tour no time look out window so no view also ok.
 

do1phin

New Member
hi kk,

i stayed at sail city. I dont really like it coz its small and not very clean.. the place has been repainted. its run by hong konger.

but the location is good. walking distance to sky city and the harbour..
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little_a

Active Member
http://ashley79.myphotoalbum.com/view_album.php?set_albumName=album02

Day 1 (03 Dec 05); Day 16 - 17 (18 - 19 Dec 05): Christchurch
Tuscana Motor Lodge NZ$120 (www.tuscana.co.nz) (74 Bealey Avenue, Christchurch, New Zealand
Remarks : Very friendly hosts. Ensuite, with kitchen.

Day 2 (04 Dec 05) : Twizel
Mountain Chalet Motels NZ$100 (http://www.mountainchalets.co.nz/)(Wairepo Road, Twizel, New Zealand)
Remarks : Highly Recommended. Very convenient location. Ensuite, with kitchen.

Day 3 (05 Dec 05) : Dunedin
Hulmes Court Bed & Breakfast NZ$130(http://www.hulmes.co.nz/)(52 Tennyson Street, Dunedin, New Zealand)
Remarks : B&B Accomodation. Ensuite. No kitchen facilities.

Day 4 – 5 (06 – 07 Dec 05) : Te Anau
Antler Lodge Bed and Breakfast NZ$120 (http://www.antlerlodgeteanau.co.nz/) (44 Matai Street, Te Anau, New Zealand)
Remarks : Best B&B Accomodation. Very nice hosts. Beautiful rooms. Ensuite, with kitchen

Day 6 – 7 (08 - 09 Dec 05) : Queenstown
Blue Peak Lodge NZ$110 (http://www.bluepeaks.co.nz) (17 Cnr Stanley & Sydney Streets, Queenstown, New Zealand)
Remarks : Good and convenient location. Ensuite with kitchen.

Day 8 (10 Dec 05) : Fox Glacier
Reflection Lodge(http://www.reflectionlodge.co.nz) (Cook Flat Road, Fox Glacier, New Zealand) NZ$190
Remarks : Homestay. Has a very beautiful replica of Lake Matheson. Ensuite. No cooking facilities.

Day 9 (11 Dec 05) : Hokitika
Heritage Highway Motel NZ$105 (http://www.heritagemotel.co.nz) (12 Fitzherbert Street, Hokitika, West Coast, New Zealand)

Day 10 (12 Dec 05) : Westport
Chelsea Gateway Motor Lodge NZ$120 (http://www.chelseagateway.co.nz/) (330 Palmerston Street, Westport, New Zealand)
Remarks : Ensuite with kitchen and spa facilities.

Day 11 (13 Dec 05) : Motueka
Equestrian Lodge Motel NZ$110 (http://www.equestrianlodge.co.nz/) (136 Tudor Street (first right past KFC), Motueka, New Zealand)
Remarks : Ensuite with kitchen

Day 12 (14 Dec 05) : Blenheim
Lugano Motor Lodge NZ$115 (http://www.lugano.co.nz/) (92 High Street, Blenheim, New Zealand)
Remarks : Ensuite with kitchen

Day 13 (15 Dec 05) : Kaikoura
Panorama Motel NZ$130 (http://www.panoramamotel.co.nz/) (266 The Esplanade, Kaikoura, New Zealand)
Remarks : The only motel that was fully occupied when I was there. Seaview. Ensuite with kitchen.

Day 14 (16 Dec 05) : Hanmer Springs
Albergo Hanmer Lodge & Alpine Villa NZ$220 (http://www.albergohanmer.com) (Albergo Hanmer, PO Box 79, Hanmer Springs, North Canterbury)
Remarks : Very delicious cooked breakfast. Beautiful view and room. Spa facilities.

Day 15 (17 Dec 05) : Akaroa
Akaroa Boutique Accommodation NZ$180 (http://www.akaroa5.co.nz/welcome.cfm)(5 Seaview Avenue, Akaroa, New Zealand)
Remarks : Stayed in the French Cottage..one whole cottage...rather big. Really an experience. Kind of eerie for me because I'm timid.

All the accomodations I stayed in had off-street parking.
 

bellybuttony

New Member
hi Tots, thanks! ok..will go take a look at the Glow Worm Forest. clearly marked paths in there rite? and i stil haven found an accommodation at Fox. maybe gotta stay at Franz Josef side. but i prefer Fox cos i read it's quieter. but oh well.

hi lyesha! thanks for your super useful post! i've booked the mountain chalets at twizel too...and your pics were certainly very helpful! thanks again! i'd be going this dec...the same period as u were there last year. would u recommend dat i pre-book my activities?
 

chng

New Member
Hi ash,

If u r staying at Franz Josef, then to go to the Glow Worm Forest will be not worth it since gotta travel. I went cos it's less than 5 mins walk from my hotel at night. But in any case u are going to visit it, better to bring a torch cos it's pitch dark inside. I wouldn't say that it is more to tourist attraction kinda setting but rather a nature walk kinda feel.
 

bellybuttony

New Member
thanks tots! will remember to bring torch. think i'll jus go to the forest to haf a look. can drive there and park? since there's nothing to do at nite in NZ rite?

your pic of Mt Cook is gorgeous!!! hopefully it'll still be snow capped when i go in dec. hehe. where did u take the pic from?
 

chng

New Member
Yup can drive there and park, think I saw some carpark there. I took the pic from an open area where many coaches can stop by and let tourists snap. Not too sure what's the name of the stopover. It's really a gorgeous sight and many of my friends thought it's a postcard and din believe I snapped that on my camera when I place in my album!
 

little_a

Active Member
hi ash, i dun think u have to pre-book the activities.. however, you might want to take note of the timing (ie. what time the activities are available).. I overlooked that and din have the chance to visit the cathedral caves.
 


bellybuttony

New Member
thank tots..keeping my fingers crossed dat i can still get a motel at Fox Glacier - Lake Matheson Motel. then maybe i can walk to the Forest. ;p

hi lyesha - oooo where's the cathedral caves? haven heard abt them.
 

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