Hooker Hut

After our adventure on the Able Tasman track we drove south to spend time with family in Timaru. We also fit in 2 nights camping in Hooker Valley beneath Aoraki/Mount Cook, mainly because my sister Bridget was celebrating her 40th birthday. There were plenty of nervous checks of the weather forecast leading up to the […]

Abel Tasman

Between Christmas and New Years 2023 we walked the Abel Tasman track. We’d booked campsites earlier in 2023 when bookings opened on the DOC website and joined the mad rush to secure our places. Initially we’d thought that we’d get beds in the huts on the track but these spaces disappeared in seconds, and as […]

Piwakawaka Hut

It was February 2021 when I booked Piwakawaka Hut for Anzac weekend in 2022, its been very popular since becoming available in late 2020. Created by Taranaki Regional Council as an added attraction to the already impressive Pukeiti Gardens, Piwakawaka Hut is easy to reach accommodation for those wanting an overnight hut experience, and it […]

Kapiti Island – Rangatira Point

After our December visit to Kapiti Island we still had a couple of daytrip vouchers to visit the more southern Rangatira Point. Keryn’s parents were staying and Phil had a significant birthday to celebrate, so we decided to all take the trip before Alayna started school. Leave from work was organised and we drove north to […]

Summer Holidays

We spent a lot of time at or near home over the Christmas/New Years break. This was mostly due to uncertainty created by the ongoing Covid-19 situation and staying home just seemed easiest. We had a short 4 night trip to Timaru to see my family but otherwise we’ve been staying in the Greater Wellington […]

Visiting Gibbs Farm

For years now I’ve had a monthly reminder in my calendar to check for availability to visit Gibbs Farm, a sculpture park featuring a large number of mammoth commissioned artworks situated north of Auckland on hilly farmland adjacent to the Kaipara Harbour. Earlier this year I was surprised to find some dates available in November […]

Travelling in NZ while the world deals with COVID-19

It’s very strange to have spent a long weekend on holiday away with friends while much of the world is under lockdown and suffering through COVID-19 outbreaks. We’re very aware of how lucky we are in New Zealand to have a community free of COVID which allows an almost normal life. Every morning while we […]

Summer days part 2: The Putangirua Pinnacles

Saturday saw us traversing the Rimutaka Hill Road with a destination of the Putangirua Pinnacles on the Wairarapa south coast. We were not alone in our choice and as we sat at a picnic table for an early lunch there was a constant stream of vehicles arriving and departing the pinnacles campsite and carpark. It […]

Summer days part 1: Otari-Wilton and Titahi bay

The last few days have blessed us with lovely weather so we’ve been out and about. On friday afternoon we took a walk at Otari-Wilton Bush. There was abundant birdlife with dozens of tuis and kakariki flying overhead, plenty of kereru around and also a pair of k?rearea circling around a tree on the other […]

The North Pole Express

What better time to break the blog hiatus than the lead-up to Christmas? Last weekend we traveled on the North Pole Express, a steam train ride from Paraparaumu to the North Pole (Otaki standing in) and back. We were joined by Kelly, Drew and Clara and all met up at the Paraparaumu train station. We […]

An autumn escape – Arrowtown to the Catlins

Last year I won a camper van trip in a photo competition organised by Bluebridge. We planned an Autumn escape down south and seeing as we were given a 6 berth campervan we invited Keryn’s parents along as well. We flew to Queenstown and picked up our vehicle then headed to a supermarket to get […]

New Years wandering

I had been planning a quiet New Years Eve as I had a concrete pad to construct the next day but then it started looking like the aurora could show so plans changed. For months I’ve been meaning to walk the Rimutaka Trig track (now named Te Ara Tirohanga: “The view that improves as you […]

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