Gerry E., Australia (+pics)
We had a great time in beautiful New Zealand. We only had time to do the North Island Two weeks just isn't enough time to do so much travelling. We could have done with staying in some of the places more than one night. The scenery everywhere just blew us away. There is so much for everyone to do. It is so well catered for the tourists.
The places I loved were The Pancake Rocks, Hamner Springs thermal pools, boat ride on Millford Sound, the many lakes, the scenery at Fox Glacier and Franz Josef and the farming areas that had so many sheep and cattle. Our last day in Christchurch we went to the Botanic Garden. We also took a walk around centre of Christchurch and saw the devastation still there from the earthquake. How sad to see those old buildings still waiting to be renovated.
As regards the van, we were a little surprised when we picked up the camper van as we thought being only a two berth it would be somewhat smaller than the six berth vans but there was very little difference. However, my daughter did all the driving and she is a very capable and experienced driver and handled it very well. I was a little nervous driving on the mountains and had my foot on the imaginary brake which made her laugh.
The camper van was very clean and well serviced when we picked it up. As we stayed in all powered camper van parks with all the facilities we didn't use the toilet or shower but I believe the other three vans that were booked the same time as ours and are still travelling (now in the North Island) stopped outside of the parks on some occasions so would have found the toilet and shower very useful. We didn't use the stove or oven because we got a little confused about the sign on it that said not to use matches so we thought it didn't work, however, we used the camp site kitchens which were very good. I did try to phone the office and one of the service centres both of which went to message. It would have been difficult for them to phone us back as we were quite often out of phone contact.
The young man in the office was very helpful when we picked up and returned the van. The change over to the car was perfect. And when we returned it we were driven immediately out to our hotel near the airport.
Gigi, you have been fantastic since day one when the other people in our group contacted you. Your response to queries have been extremely prompt and helpful. We couldn't have asked for better.
Thank you for all your help. All the best for 2014.
Posted by Gigi - 22 January, 2014 at 11:11 am