New Zealand Road Trip

Road trip budget

And with the last bills paid, here’s the budget for the 16-day road trip through New Zealand. All in all I spent 1615 € in 16 days, which is basically the budget foreseen. 685 €  Hotels and Accommodation 435 €  Eating out & drinks 260 €  Cultural activities, entry fees, etc… 140 €  Supermarkets 50   €  other expenses […]

Up north

Time to say good-bye to Te Waipounamu, the South Island. I’m flying north to Auckland for one last night at the airport, before taking the morning flight to Tokyo the day after. Here are the flight statisticss: Flight 17 to Auckland Date: 01/04/2014 Code: ANZ648 from ZQN to AKL Airline: Air New Zealand Plane: Airbus 320 Distance flown: […]

Wrapping up

This morning I woke up to a light rain, and decided I hit the road straight away back to Queenstown. The drive was surprisingly fast and smooth, funny how a road always seems shorter when you travel it the second time. I was in Queenstown around 1pm, checked in, and would have had enough time […]

Milford Sound

Up early in the morning (around 8!) and after a quick stop to get a Latte, on the road to drive the 120 kilometers to Milford Sound, or Piopiotahi in Māori, after the piopio bird, which is now extinct. It really is at the end of it all. Funnily, two days ago I was just about […]


The weather was quite grey in Queenstown, I wasn’t up for a lake tour, so I decided to take the scenic drive along Lake Wakatipu to Glenorchy. Glenorchy is supposed to be a cute town at the end of the lake, basically at the end of all paved roads there. Actually, the road only exists […]

45°40’13.7″S 168°14’27.9″E

Unless I make an impromptu visit to Tierra del Fuego, I have hit the southernmost point on my trip today. I was at the corner of Mossburn Five Rivers Road and Mossburn-Lumsden Highway, in Mossburn, NZ Precisely at coordinates 45°40’13.7″S 168°14’27.9″E. It’ll be some time before I beat that.          

On to Queenstown

I got up early (e.g. 9am) because I had nearly 300 kilometers to drive to Queenstown. The lovely hosts of my Burkes Pass Motel gave me a couple of tips. So many in fact that I could easily drive on another two weeks, to cover that. Why read a 500 page Lonely Planet? Just ask […]

Final Frontier

I had read about Earth&Sky star gazing tours in one of the many, many flyers, magazines, leaflets that you collect on these trips… It sounded great, a night time tour on top of a mountain, with astronomers from the observatory in one of the darkest parts of the country…. I was even more thrilled to […]

Lake Tekapo

Before heading out of Christchurch, I paid a visit to the Quake City Exhibition. In the heart of what once was the Central Business District, this exhibition explains the background of the earthquake in 2011 (and the historic ones), the science behind plate tectonics, liquefaction, sand volcanoes… But it also gives a human touch to […]

Pallet Pavilion

I came back from Akaroa in time for sunset in Christchurch, and wanted to have a second look, in beautiful weather instead of yesterday’s rain. Alas, it’s just as depressing. I’m still speechless. Christchurch is inventive though. If your shopping mall is a ruin, create a temporary one. This one became so good, it might […]

Bonjour, Akaroa

If things would have turned out a bit differently, I might speak French in La nouvelle Zélande, aujourd’hui! I took a day trip out to the Banks Peninsula, that sits on the middle of the East coast, a bit south of Christchurch. Formed by two massive volcanos, the peninsula is mountainous, rugged, and possesses several […]