From the category archives:

New Zealand

fiordland parkLike it’s larger neighbor to the west, New Zealand is one of the premier places in the world to backpack. New Zealand shares many of the advantages of backpacking in Australia – it’s got a variety of environments across its territory, has and excellent public transportation system, and is safe. There isn’t much traffic and the highway system in New Zealand is easily navigable. It’s not a large country with lots of ground to cover and making travel plans when you’re there will be a breeze. Renting a vehicle in New Zealand isn’t too expensive, particularly if you split the costs for a car or van with your travel mates or other backpackers you meet at the hostel you’re staying at.

Hostels and Places To Stay

Speaking of which, there are many unique and inexpensive hostels to stay at across New Zealand. In Auckland and Wellington you can choose from a large variety of hostels that have Internet access, are close to the sights you want to see, or are very individually designed. Although New Zealand’s two main cities are located on the North Island, you won’t have any trouble getting to the South Island or finding accommodations there.

Climate and Weather

The climate in New Zealand varies but the temperatures aren’t extreme in any of the seasons. They range from about 0C to 30C with winter at opposite times of the year from the Northern Hemisphere (July instead of January).

Things To Do

maori sculptureExplore Maori Culture

While you’re in New Zealand you can explore the islands UK roots as well as the history and culture of the indigenous Maori people. There are shows and festivals celebrating and showcasing the warrior race Maori’s traditions, dances, and foods. The Maori arrived to New Zealand a relatively short 1,500 years ago. The Maori were featured in the movie Whale Rider and it’s worth the effort to go see haka war dance while you’re backpacking in New Zealand.

Hobbiton

There are also some places you can visit to experience modern culture like Hobbiton in Westfarthing. You may know Hobbiton better by it’s name in the Lord of the Rings trilogy as The Shire. While most of the Lord of the Rings movie sets in New Zealand were dismantled (it was filmed there), Hobbiton has remained much to the delight of fans and other visitors alike.

Skydiving and Adventure Sports

Skydiving and bungy jumping are two very popular adventure activities across New Zealand. It’s a bit expensive doing either in New Zealand, but the views from the sky are incredible. If you’ve never jumped from an airplane before, New Zealand is the place to give it a go. You can also go jet skiing, camping and hiking in Fiordland National Park, and white water rafting.

Recommended Gear

Much like Australia, New Zealand is a long haul flight and a place where you’ll be on the road (most likely) quite a bit. You should take a pack that’s got enough space to carry everything you’ll need with a little room to grow so you can fit some souvenirs you pick up along the way. We highly recommend the Osprey Atmos 65L Pack or if you’re worried that might be too small or are traveling with another person, you can try sharing an Osprey Aeter 85L Mountaineering Backpack.

Backpacking The Region

If you’re considering a regional backpacking trip try combing New Zealand with:

| Australia | Thailand |Philippines |