Graeme & Melita, Australia (+pics)
We came to accept you as a friend and confidant rather than someone helping us book campers.
The trip went without a hitch. Even the weather held good for us. The worst days of rain we turned into driving days, and the days that we really wanted to get out and sight see turned into glorious sun shine.
It was great touring with the three families. We all had different interests that helped us do things we would not otherwise have done. We cruised Fiordland, took in the Maori culture in Rotorua, hiked on the Routeburn track, rode horses around Franz Joseph, teased our minds at Puzzleworld Wanaka. I think my highlight was the Luging at Queenstown. I don’t know who had more fun, me or my 9 year old son (the video camera proves that I did….).
Feedback for other travellers:
.) Alpha campers were good. The camper was a little old with a few idiosyncrasies (we had to hold our tongue in the right direction to close one of the doors), but the people at both pick up and drop off were great. They listened to what we had to say and made notes to (hopefully) get the little problems fixed. Drop off was a breeze. It took 5 minutes.
.) The Tamaki Maori experience in Rotorua was fantastic. All of the kids came away and said that they liked it, and that’s high praise from 9 to 15 year olds.
.) Joining the Top 10 Tourist Parks membership was well worth it. All of the Top 10 facilities were clean, neat and in good working order. Wanaka Top 10 was probably at the bottom end of the scale, through to Queenstown being an absolute standout. On average, all the Top 10 parks were great. One bit of etiquette that was fantastic was that at Christchurch, all those people that were flying out put their left over food and utensils that were no longer required in the common room, and those of us that had flown into Christchurch could pickup any items that would be useful for our trip. We did not stay at the Top 10 in Auckland, so could not do the same when we flew out. I did note that the same thing happened at the Camper pick up / drop off venue.
.) For me, the best van park was The Shining Star Beachfront park at Hokitika. The best free camping was the DoC campsite at Lake Sylvan (although all the “side of the road” camping we did was great). The best campsite that we did not stay at was Pelorus Bridge between Blenheim and Nelson. This was a fantastic hidden campground that we found when we stopped for lunch that day.
I have included a couple of photos.
Thanks again for all your help.
Posted by Gigi - 25 February, 2014 at 2:39 am