Defined by unspoiled, picture-postcard vistas, dotted with friendly villages, New Zealand combines nature at its most sublime with adventure, history and the native Maori art.
The native Maori call it Aotearoa (the land of the long white cloud), but New Zealand has been called Godsland and the Paradise of the Pacific since the early 1800s. New Zealanders know they live in a paradise, and they love sharing it with visitors.
In my four visits to the islands, two to the north and two to the south, I would have to agree with that statement about sharing the place with visitors.
With very little natural resources to exploit, tourism is far and away the largest industry, so the average Kiwi (New Zealand resident) understands how valuable visitors contributions are to their local economy. So you’ll find things like clean public bathrooms, well-organized roadways, and plenty of directional maps and signs to keep you from getting lost.
And just think–you don’t even have to think about mastering the art of driving on the right, since your motor coach will take you wherever you need to go!
Carol raved about her 2012 New Zealand trip, that included highlights of both the North and the South Islands.
“Be prepared to be wowed, entertained, thrilled and wishing you could do it again,” is how she described her reaction to the Dart River jet boat trip, on the South Island.
“The scenery in this country can take your breath away. It is awesome. Milford Sound is not to be missed. During the boat trip within the sound, you feel dwarfed by the cliffs and waterfalls.
Queenstown is a delight. It has beautiful parks and people’s homes and gardens are so neat and tidy. Auckland is a large city and their restaurants along the water/harbor are busy and the nightlife in that area is in high gear.”
We asked Carol about her experience with women-only tours. Like Irene, she had already been on numerous other Sights and Soul trips.
“One of the things I really appreciate is that on her tours, you are met at the airport. If new to traveling internationally, this is such a comfort.”
Sights and Soul’s 13-day New Zealand tour will take in the country’s highlights, and the tour price includes the airfare to cross from the North, where the tour begins in Auckland, to the south island where Queenstown is the center of adrenaline and outdoor adventures, such as Fox Glacier.