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Reisbegeleiding 9,0
Vervoer 7,9
Overnachtingen 8,2
Reisroute 8,4
9.1 21 beoordelingen
  • 10

    Newzealand trekking ( TLZ)

    Excellent trip with varied iteniary with amazing landscapes

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    lots...trek in Tongariro national park, Milford Sounds, Mt Cook trek, Helicopter and jet boat rides , etc

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Both island leaders were good. But Justine in south Island was exceptional . As an Ex Ranger who had also trekked extensively in his young age , he was full of knowledge as well as being very practical.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    JUST DO IT as they say in the advert ! Dont take excess clothes as opportunity to dress smart for evenings is limited since itenary is packed so most of us just wore our clean trekking gear. Also will need larger backpack for the couple of camping days because will need to carry spare clothes,sleeping bag and tent, and some food for cooking.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    A long way away for us Brits but well worth it.

  • 10

    trekking new zealand

    A very well put-together trip with a variety of really interesting experiences

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing "Mount Doom" appear out of its cloud cap on the Tongariro crossing - on cue, during a snack break - and disappearing again the moment my wife had got her camera ready! Helicopter trip into Siberia valley....

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Linda (north island) - lovely Lady - felt very safe in her capable hands Justin (South island) - a tireless bundle of energy, very knowledgeable and a great organiser.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Expect to go up to waist deep on the river crossings after any rain!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Thoroughly recommend this holiday,but if we were to travel to NZ again, we would break the journey with an overnight stop (or two) en route -maybe in Dubai.

  • 10

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    A great way to see and do a LOT!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    What to choose! Camping on the beach at Abel Tasman was beautiful, big sky, stunning sunset and dawn. The Red quarry on the Tongariro crossing was the most amazing sight, the colours in the rocks unlike anything I've ever seen, then there was Lake Crucible, the refelction of the glacier so clear and sharp. I guess if I had to choose one, the sky dive over Queenstown was the most spectacular experience, we were blessed with a clear, bright day, making the views quite magical.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Both guides were brilliant, Graham on North Island and Chris on South. They both delivered beyond the expectations and were extremely knowlegable and passionate about their country. Changing the itinerary at short notice due to adverse weather was much appreciated and made for a very enjoyable final day. Chris's Dad, supplier of delicious birthday cakes, much appreciated too.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This is a very full on trip, you need to be quite organised packing and unpacking every  night. It is absolutely worth the long flight and a fantasitc way to see a lot of New Zealand and I would do advise doing all the activities and options on offer, it's that kind of place!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Hiking New Zealand were fab hosts and could not have done more to ensure the best possible experience.

  • 10

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    A well-organised, varied and very enjoyable trip with great leaders and nice group members which did what it said on the tin.  A good mix of travel and walking and other outdoor activities - a perfect first taste of NZ.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Difficult to say - the immediate immersion into the relaxed NZ vibe after the stresses of the UK pre-Christmas rush, the amazing volcanic landscapes round Rotorua, fabulous lake-side accommodation at Lake Taupo, the bizarre lunar landscape on the Tongariro crossing, the remote windswept beaches of the west coast of South Island, the lush greenery and deep inlets of Fjordland, the majesty of (unfortunately mist-shrouded) Mount Cook - the list goes on.   

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Graham and Chris (respective group leaders for North and South Island parts of the trip) were both very capable and efficient as well as being friendly, impeturbable and very knowledgeable about the flora and fauna and history of NZ.  They worked really hard to ensure we had the best holiday possible and to facilitate group members contributing as well ot the experience. I really don't think they could have done any more than they did and indeed they exceeded our expectations e.g. Chris invited us to his house for a buffet lunch on Christmas Day.  

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you want to get a general overview of New Zealand in as short a time as realistically possible, with a bit of walking and other outdoor activities throughout, I can highly recommend this trip.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I understand that Exodus is thinking about changing the local agent, Trek New Zealand.  From my experience Trek New Zealand provide a really excellent service which leads to satisfied clients who will therefore be more inclined to go on other Exodus trips.  So changing the local agent could prove to be a false economy.      

  • 10

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    An absolutely brilliant three weeks in the most wonderful country. Everything as described in the trip notes, and more. 

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Difficult to decide, but some of the highlights were the trip up to Abel Tasman NP, including camping on the beach - watching the sun set across the water, then seeing the southern night sky in all its glory; the helicopter flight in Mt Aspiring NP and the next day a very welcome lift back down the final stretch of river by jet boat, after a 7 hour hike; the stupendous scenery around Mt Cook; and paragliding from 1400m up in Queenstown. And not forgetting rainforests, thermal springs, kiwis, active volcanoes, glaciers and fjords... 

    What did you think of your group leader?

    On North Island leader Kath - what a character! Really knowledgeable and upbeat even in the face of 50mph winds, hail, sleet and snow on the Tongariro crossing. Chris - great guy too. Arranged for the sun to shine the entire two weeks on South Island and even managed to produce home made scones when we arrived! 

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    UK citizens need an ESTA visa if transitting via the US (return flight was via Los Angeles) - the Exodus office didn't know this for sure. Anyway it's easy to obtain online - I did it while in NZ. The weather in NZ (see earlier comment above) really can be "all four seasons in a day" - temperatures we encountered varied from freezing to 30 degrees - pack accordingly but try to travel as light as possible as you'll constantly be packing and repacking.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Despite the long walks I don't think I lost weight - the Kiwis like to serve generous portions of food. Great bunch of people in our group - we even won the Mt Cook pub quiz! At the beginning, I did wonder what I'd got myself into when I found out I was sharing with a guy who'd bagged all the Monros in Scotland and been up Everest (hi Pete!) but, as a not particularly fit 54 year old, I had a blast. In conclusion, if you are at all considering this trip, just go for it!

  • 10

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    The trip was an unending variety of activities and experiences; physically tiring but without the stresses sometimes felt in non English speaking countries.  It was a superb trip but 3 weeks is barely enough time and I have returned home with a list of things/places to return and visit again or anew.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I find it difficult to choose a single most inspirational moment of the trip but would include the sceneries around the Tongariro crossing and Mount Cook which were really beautiful and unique.  It was awe inspiring just being there. I also chose to jump out of a plane, skydiving from 12000 feet near Queenstown.  This was our single rest day on the trip, but by this time the adrenaline was flowing.  That was pretty memorable.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We had separate group leaders for the North Island (Kath) and South Isalnd (Chris).  Both were from Hiking New Zealand and were excellent.  They both had the same well balanced mixture of Enthusiasm with Energy, Professionalism with Knowledge.  They were always happy to enthuse but remained flexible in order to provide the best for people on the day.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    On arrival in NZ open your minds to a non stop rush of movement and experience.  On return be prepared to feel shattered from the whole trip.  Enjoy!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Take seriously the signs at Auckland airport arrivals point which warn against taking any foodstuffs into the country.  A single apple can cost you NZ$400 fine. I saw it happen.

  • 10

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    We packed so much in the three weeks that it was necessary to come back home and sit down with the itinerary. notes etc. to appreciate just how much we had achieved!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Imposible to single out just one highlight for this trip. We were a small group of  only five people, plus a diferent leader for each of the islands . Smaller groups get things done more efficiently, enabling all of us to pack more into an already busy schedule, combined with exellent knowledge by our leaders Kath & Chris, for whom  nothing was too much trouble.  Their help, imformation and passion for their home New Zealand lead us to efficient use of our time, with many extra side trips , viewpoints and short treks added . 

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We had one for North & one for South Island! Both knew their country like the back of their hand;  Kath lead us North and Chris lead us South. We all developed team spirit, strange when a group of people are thrown together at random.  Our leaders were passionate about their homeland ,keen conservasionists ,so helpful, full of knowledge and enthusiasm.  Quickly they became our friends rather than a leader. 

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This N.Z. must be the best action packed ,sight seeing ,thrill seeking New Zealand package available ANYWHERE. OK, you could say OH, we will make our own way, do our own arrangements , No Way, time would be wasted sourcing and organising, you would see and do far less. These guides know their stuff, just who to contact etc. while your kayaking/ trekking/whitewater rafting/sight seeing /jet boating or whatever is your passion these guys are booking /organising the next step! 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The walk on the Fox Glacier was probably the only slight disappointment.  It was very busy and you were not given a chance to look around much.

  • 8

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    An action-filled three weeks. The trip was well organised to fit so much in the time.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I enjoyed the two days in Siberia the most; as well as Milford Sound and around Holyford.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We were guided by exhuberant Kath and wise and understanding Graham. Both were gregarious, and gave of themselves fully.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The minibus was cramped for 11 +1 persons and its windows lacked height for seeing the amazing scenery. An arrangement initiated by the guides to rotate the sitting in the front seats would contribute to greater fairness and reduce tensions.

  • 10

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    Fantastic jam packed three weeks in the wonderful New Zealand. The trip was more than I could have hoped for, New Zealand would be a great back drop for any visit.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    So many great days, so many great moments. Camping on the beach at Able Tasman and watching seals playing in the evening surf. All sitting on a rock in silence watching the sun go down on the volcano tops in the Tongariro Park. But when your birthday falls on the day that you have a dramatic flight by helicopter to the Siberia Valley that has to come tops. How they managed to smuggle cake into the hut to surprise me I can’t guess. The walk up to Lake Crucible later was hard work, perhaps it was the cake. Must mention the bird life, be quiet and still and you will be amazed how tame they are.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Both the leaders were fantastic but differant in their own ways. Great but real people who brought their own personalities to the job. Very hard working and if you do go on this trip please chip in with the household jobs. You will enjoy the trip more as the team builds.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Sand Fly deterrent is not optional it is a must. Also you will want to stock up on itch relief. Long sleeves and long trousers are also needed to help keep the evil things off you. They bite and it hurts, try to not scratch because it make them flare up again. Get the local snake oil from the first chemist you find, don’t bother with the stuff you can find in Boots in the UK. The walks to the huts are hard work due to the weight of gear that has to be taken along. As well as all your own gear there are the shared items which add up. Everybody has to help and it only works if the team all pull together. It was not clear that there was a short hop from the North to South by a tiny one prop plane. Great trip as it does not get high and the view is stunning. But there is a strict 20Kg limit on all luggage. That includes hand luggage of which there is none because it can’t fit inside. So that’s everything has to add up to 20Kg maximum. Wash and wear is the way to go and many of the motels have laundrettes but getting it done when you arrive late and have an early start is not easy. I will not go into my experiments with microwaves and hairdryers due to health and safety.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Take some music for the van; in the north the CD collection is abysmal and Kath needs help. In the south Graham has an Ipod/mp3 connection and too large a collection of Country and Weston. We organised guest DJs for the front seat and that helped pass the long journeys. The New Zealand people are lovely and you should make time to chat, they will be very willing and interested. Thank you Exodus, a fantastic trip I could not have won a better prize or shared it with a better group.

  • 10

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    New Zealand exceeded my expectations and the trip provided even more than the brochure promises. The value for money was exceptional. There was such a diversity of landscape and no end to the opportunities to explore it to the full.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were so many inspirational moments that it really is difficult to pick just one. Being dropped by helicopter in a remote location on the Wilkin River in the Mount Aspiring National Park, the hundreds of waterfalls in Milford Sound after a day of rain, the latent power of the Tongariro volcanoes, the pristine wilderness of the Whirinaki NP, the vastness of the volcanic crater that is Lake Taupo, a close encounter with the rare Fiordland Crested Penguins and sleeping under the incredible, starlit, southern skies are all inspirational moments that will linger in my memory for the rest of my days.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We had two group leaders, Kath Watzig in the North Island, and Chris Steele in the South Island. Both were capable, competent, diligent, knowledgable and inspirational. They both had to do absolutely everything from early morning to late evening with no support teams or assistants to share their load. They both approached their roles with such enthusiasm and comprehensive knowledge that the entire group derived the absolute, maximum benefit from the trip.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Just do it!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This trip is challenging at times but is an opportunty not to be missed. The opportunity to trek in so many different magnificent and diverse regions is something that is not easily matched by other destinations but in addition the trip provides numerous opportunities to experience the adrenaline-fuelled activities for which New Zealand is justifiably famous.

  • 8

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    I have had great diffuculty rating this trip and even with the benefit of time, I just cannot give it more than 4 stars, I really wanted too but although there is nothing wrong with the trip at all and it is exactly as promised in the brochure, I can't help feeling just a bit disappointed. That may sound churlish on what is otherwise an excellent over 3 week trip to a stunning country with fantastic settings for those who love the outdoors, that was superbly organised. But perhaps that's it, the trip is exactly as planned as described and there was not that sudden "surprise" moment you get on other trips. The trip perhaps tries to be too many things to everyone, accepting this may be many peoples only taste of New Zealand, so although it is 3 weeks long, there is an awful lot packed in and being honest the hiking was really relatively easy and it is apparent there are so many fantastic longer hikes available, so I think I would have prefered it to have been able to indulge in one of the longer multi-day hikes, rather than just doing a bit of several of the classic hikes.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The trip had many highlights, overall the helicopter trip to Siberia hut followed by the climb to Lake Crucible and the jet-boat out of the Siberia river valley the next day was probably the best single part. However for scale and beauty, Milford Sound is almost impossible to beat. The hike up and over the volcanoes at Tongariro was equally inspiration in a more physical way (especially good if you are a Lord of the Rings fan and like spotting film locations). The final hike around Mt Somers, initially felt like it had been tagged on a something to fill a day, but this turned out to be particularly enjoyable, probably as it was the most deserted and not only was the scenery stunning but it was glimpse of how New Zealanders have brilliantly engaged with their outdoors. Perhaps the most surprisingly inspiration part was waking up after camping on the beach in Abel Tasman, just like Robinson Crusoe.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The two trip leaders, one each for North and South Island were fantastic; knowledgable, enthusiastic. encouraging. Impossible to rate them any higher.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you want to experience a bit of most things New Zealand has to offer, this trip is probably ideal for you, although for me it has just stimulated a desire to go on and do the whole Milford trek. I probably did not quite consider who would pay this amount of money and take over 3 weeks off, and it is fair to say that all but one other person on the trip was retired, and as such I was considerably younger than everyone else. This was not particualrly a problem but some fellow travellers seemed to have major concerns about some of the accomodations and I have never been on an Exodus trip like this were people brought hard cases for luggage. Yes, there is camping, some of the huts are basic and there are drop toilets and shared sleeping platforms; however compared to similar in other parts of the world, these are relatively well appointed, clean and comfortable. You do need to be prepared to carry some group equpment, so you do need a 50L day sac, it's a bit unfair if those who do bring larger day sacs have to carry all the eqipment. We were extremely lucky with the weather, especially in the rain-ridden areas of South Island and I am sure at another time you will get considerably wet. You do need to be prepared for all climates, so pack accordingly with layers: it ranged from tropical beach in Abel Tasman to hiking in a hail storm in Mt Cook. The biting insects are worse than advertised, bring repellent and cover up. Gaiters are useful as the grass is wet in the morning and I found baselayer leggings possibly the most useftul piece of clothing, easy to carry, sleep in and wear under shorts to hike in, as the New Zealanders do. For th overnighters you do need enough clothing to change completely. The instructions regarding baggage are clear but different people interpreted differently. You do need a 50 L sac for the overnight hikes, enough to carry sleeping bag, clothes and a share of the group equipment but you can leave your remaining equipment locked in the trailor. I brought a standard and comfortable rucksac with all my things as my main baggage and smaller 30 L day sac as hand luggage and for day walks and decanted out what I didn't need each time into a fold up travel holdall and walked with my riucksac.  This worked well for me, others packed a ~ 50L pack inside their bigger main baggage and also brought a smaller day sac, this seemed like a lot of baggage. As advertised this is a very fast paced trip, there is a lot of arriving late at accomodation and leaving early the next morning. Compared to other trips there is not a lot of time to rinse out and dry clothes, which might be worth considering when packing. I took walking poles but strapped them to my pack on all but one day, the walking is not that difficult at all. However the climb is Lake Crucible is very steep and I found poles essential for both the ascent and descent. So I would recommend taking them.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Our trip coincided with the Christchurch earthquake (we were on the other side of the Alps at the time) and the later stages of the severe rains that hit that part of the world. This had minimal effect: the day in Christchurch and hotel were rearranged and we didn't hike into and camp at the Ballroom because of the height of the river but the alternatives were well organised. If you like the outdoors and this will be your one trip to New Zealand and you don't mind some basic accomodation, this is definitely the trip for you. If you really want to experience the great hikes and love a hard walk, you may find this a bit disappointing and like me, find that it has just wetted your appetite for something more. Although badged as moderate-challenging, physically the trekking is not that tough, although some areas are very isolated and the volcanic scree is tiring. The climb to Lake Crucible and the Tongariro passage (when you have the heaviest pack) are the most difficult days, but really anyone that's used to walking regularly or is appropriately fit should manage these easily enough.

  • 8

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    A great trip that encompassed New Zealand over 3 weeks. From Volcanoes to waterfalls, from Cities to remote mountain huts; this trip had it all.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Tackling Fox Glazier in the most horrendous rain and wind conditions. We were the last group to tackle the Glazier that day owing to the weather condtions making the terrain very unstable. Our local guide made it a very exhilerating adventure.  The helicopter trip to Siberia Hut, the walk to lake Crucible, followed by a Jet Boat out......A perfect 48 hours. We must mention, Darb, our Helicopter pilot.  His skills in taking us over and through the mountain range was superb.......then who should meet us with his Jet Boat....Darb!  Fantastic! I want to be Darb....what a job! 

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Cath, our North Island leader is probably the most inspirational and interesting person we have ever had the pleasure to travel with.  Her patience, knowledge and good humour held the group together at all times. She recognised the varying abilities and encouraged all to achieve. An absolute gem!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The Tongeriro crossing is a challenge. The weather was poor on our crossing, making it a real 'grunt'. Our advice would be; be confident of your abilities in the mountains in difficult weather condtions.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • 10

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    Only three weeks to see New Zealand is not long, so three things had to be perfect to make this trip work - itinerary, organisation and guides.  These could not have been bettered, thus making this a really memorable holiday.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Mountain huts, kayaking, Tongariro Crossing, South Island views, Milford Sound, helicopter trip, flight from North to South Island, jet boating, river crossings, Ballroom Overhang ........ and more.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Both leaders, North and South Island, had exceptional knowledge of the country and the sorts of places we all wanted to go, and were extraordinarily organised.  They were just exceptional.  Special mention must go to Chris' family's home made cakes!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Travel light, take layers of clothing for all weathers, be prepared to get your feet wet and just relax into the holiday.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    If you're uncertain, just do it.  I wondered if I was doing justice to NZ with only three weeks there and, while I would have loved to have spent longer in the country, the trip was so very well worth doing.

  • 8

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    New Zealand didn't dissappoint (apart from Crucible Lake but it wouldn't be NZ without some weather) and a great way to get a full taste of what's on offer. I will definately be going back

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Too many but here goes, Christmas Day & Boxing Day on Tongariro Crossing with the evening spent in the mountain hut with a stunning sunset and pavlova with Kiwi fruit (well done Kath, who would have known that it would have been one of the best, yet simplest Christmas meals ever). Flight from Wellington to Picton, one of the best if not, the best, flight I have ever taken. Abel Tasman, stunning.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Both Kath & Chris were knowledgeable, enthusiastic, fun and quickly became more 'friends' than guides.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don't expect to keep your feet dry!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Bunk Beds & adults don't mix. Expect it in huts but not 'nicer' accomodation.

  • 10

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    A whistle-stop tour which took in as much of this beautiful country as was possible in a 3 week period. This tour takes in the well-known tourist sites but the guides also manage to get you off the beaten track to some incredible places which we would never have found on our own. I loved every minute of the trip.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Climbing Mt Tongariro was a day that I will never forget. We woke in our mountain hut to a stunning sunrise which heralded the bright blue skies which would be with us all day. We hiked through fields of rock formations with a spectacular view of the clouds streaming down Mt Ruapehu. We trekked through ash fields, past the brilliant turquoise of the Emerald Lakes and the Red Crater where steam was jetting out of the snow covered mountainside. Our guide took us to the summit of Mt Tongariro where we lunched in the snow before descending the scree slopes into the crater. This was so much more than the standard Tongariro Crossing. Although this was clearly the highlight of the trip, there were many other wonderful things that should also be mentioned. In brief they were rafting over a 7m waterfall, kayaking up to a seal colony, the trip to the Ballroom Overhang, a really fun wet walk from Siberia Hut, the helicopter ride, the views from the start of the Routeburn track, Milford Sound, the walk from Mt Cook village and the caving at Mt Somers.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We had two very organised and keen leaders in Malcolm (North Island) and Jaron (South Island). Malcolm inspired us all with his amazing knowledge of the country, landscape and Maori legends, whilst Jaron perked everyone up with his bouncy nature and early morning coffees. 

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    It does get cold in the mountains, I was wearing thermals under ‘warm as toast’ fleece-lined trousers up Tongariro despite it being sunny. I would recommend taking a couple of pairs of thermal bottoms as these are ideal for all the river crossings. There were often clothes washing facilities (when you had time to use them) so as others have suggested try not to overpack.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Be prepared for a full-on tour which is exhausting as you move and therefore pack every day, but it is definitely worth it. It would have been nice to have longer in a number of places we visited but then I wouldn’t have wanted to miss anywhere out and this trip has given me a clear idea of where I want to go back to!

  • 8

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    A fairly whistle stop tour, but seeing and doing lots.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The Tangwira crossing over the volcanoes.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Both Malcolm (North Island) and Chris (South Island) were brilliant guides and were calm, conscientious and safe.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for it being cold in the mountains.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • 10

    Non-stop adventure

    This trip was packed with new experiences and spectacular and diverse scenery. If you've remembered to bring an open mind, you'll have it filled with great memories.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    This was my first experience of camping, and so for me the most inspirational part of the trip was the realisation that I really enjoy it.  The Tongariro hike on the North Island was the hiking highlight. The volcanic landscape is awesome, alien, challenging and beautiful. The majestic Siberia valley on the South Island, accessed by helicopter and jetboat, was another experience I hope I never forget.    

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We had two leaders, Kath on the North Island and Dan on the South Island. Both were great.  Kath is an inspirational bundle of energy and enthusiasm. She quickly made a 'family' out of our diverse group, and made sure we were always ready for our next experience. She has extensive knowledge of NZ culture, history and wildlife, which she shared with us at every opportunity. Dan is resourceful, patient, knowledgeable and a good laugh. Kath was a hard act to follow, but we soon grew fond of "Desperate" too. Where weather conditions etc made it necessary, he adapted the trip 'on the fly' , and we were never disappointed with the result. On the hikes he dealt very well with the different levels of ability within the group. He cooks a mean rice pudding too!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared to muck in, and to go with the flow. If you've not had any recent hillwalking experience, get some practice in first. It'll be worth the effort! 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I loved it.

  • 10

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    This trip provided Wow moments daily.  I know this contradicts with a review from a previous trip and everyone is entitled to their opinion but I think we must have been on different trips. This was amazing.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were so many but a shortlist would include:- Staring up at the milky way wilst staying on a mountain. Camping on a remote beach in Abel Tasman Kayaking in Milford Sound

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We had 2 great group leaders.  Both worked hard, were very knowledgeable and great company. Kath is an anspiration with her energy and zest for life.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be sure you are "trek fit" to get the most out of your trip. Be prepared for VERY basic accomodation at times.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    WOW is the only way to describe this trip as it provided WOW moments daily. There are so many wonderful places to visit in New Zealand. It is a spectacular place.  But a tour is not just about the sites but also the people and I was lucky to have 2 fantastic tour leaders.  The group of 8, whilst from different backgrounds, came together well and I am glad I had the chance to share my experience with such a great bunch of people. If I had to score the trip I would say..... 10/10, 5 stars, 100%, platinum rated or top class.  I am due to take an Exodus tour in Africa next month - it has a lot to live upto my now very high expectations!

  • 10

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    Overall the trip was a wonderful mix of both hiking and other activities that when combined with a great group (of 8), brilliant guides and amazing weather left very little that could be improved upon.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were many wonderful points in this trip. Perhaps the best for me was the 2-day hike across Tongariro and climbing Mt Ngauruhoe - definitely the most physically challenging two days. However the clarity of the night sky from the hut was incredible, along with the scree-surfing down Ngauruhoe itself. The views and varying colours of the highly volcanic area were wonderful. A close run up on that was the Siberia experience and lake crucible. The hike, the helicopter entrance and then the jet-boat exit were all incredible experiences in their own ways. Although the scheduled trip to the ballroom was rained off due to threat of being stranded on the wrong sie of a river crossing, the alternative coastal day walks in the area our guide found were well worth it in their own ways. Finally the Milford Sound Kayaking is well worth the money, especially if the weather is good (as it was for us: clear blue skies, and almost no wind)

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We had two leaders over the course of this trip - Kath in the north island and Dan in the south. Both leaders were exceptional (though very different characters) with a huge amount of local knowledge being displayed, making us feel like this was a one-off trip for ourselves rather than a monthly recurring one. In particular there was not feeling that they were sticking to a set script (and as Dan's alternatives in South Island showed), there were always plenty of options to choose from.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you want to do the Ngauruhoe climb, you will want to make sure you are fairly fit, as it is quite a tough ascent (though very worth it). According to our guide Kath, we were apparently the first Exodus group to attempt it (and made it)! On another note, if you like your wine with meals, be aware that NZ restaurant prices, whilst generally cheaper than UK for food and beer, are often just as expensive for wine.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    New Zealand is a very different country to the UK; very sparsely inhabited outside the major cities (e.g. Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch). Once you are out trekking you often feel that you are nowhere near any civilisation. For those who enjoy this sort of experience (especially if you have also never been kayaking in a fjord, or up in a helicopter or over rapids in a jet-boat before) this trip is full of `wow'. It is also refreshing to see a country where the inhabitants still have real pride. Compared to the UK, NZ is a very clean place with regards to litter and road pollution; and people are generally very friendly, laid back and relaxed.

  • 8

    TREKKING IN NEW ZEALAND

    Spectacular scenary with walks in some out of the way places we wouldn't have found independantly. A comprehensive trip including some of the best sights on both North and South Island.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Walk up to the Crucible Lake along Siberia Valley was both tough and awe inspiring but the views were spectacular. Milford Sound was beautiful, even in the torrential rain, with literally hundreds of waterfalls. We were lucky on this trip however that we only had two days of rain and the rest were very sunny days, hence the sunburn! Must slake on more cream next time. The short flight (in a fourteen seater) from Wellington to Picton over the Marlborough Sounds, Sea Kayaking at Abel Tasman, jet boat ride and the helicopter trip were excellent.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Kath, our leader in North Island, went out of her way to ensure the "team" bonded together. She ensured we made the maximum of our time which resulted in some long (but very enjoyable) days. Mark, our leader in South island, was a great guy and very efficient in piloting us around for two weeks. His geological knowledge was really useful when explaining the structure of the Mountains, teutonic plate action etc.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don't stay at the Aspen Lodge in Auckland!! This is without doubt the worst accommodation I have been offered in twenty + years of tours. Hopefully alternative accommodation will now be scheduled due to the previous adverse comments posted on the site. There are ample opportunities for washing clothes (YHA hostels etc.) on this trip so don't overpack!! As previously mentioned however we were lucky in that the weather was very kind. Numerous river crossings on the way to the Ballroom Overhang so remember to pack gear in waterproof stuff sacs!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    A great trip with some real nutters (you know who you are!!). Obviously, this is a long way to travel but the people, scenary and sights more than make up for this. The price is pitched a little high for the standard of accommodation received (only occasional en-suite facilities) but long distances covered at the right pace. We had a good mixture of driving, rest days and walking so that the trip flowed smoothly. Look forward to going back to see areas we missed i.e. Bay of Islands, Coromandel, Mt Taranaki, Stewart Island etc., etc.  Trip date: 7th Jan to 19th Jan.

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