Tuesday, June 16

14-day NZ trip : South Island

25th Apr- 1st May

It's time for South Island. This is New Zealand map so that you get the overview of how a NZ should be explored.


We went to South Island via Jetstar starting from Christchurch. There is another option to South Island via road and surely it will be more adventurous. But we only learnt the option when we arrived in Auckland. Nevertheless, time is not really on our side, thus, having flight to Christchurch saved a lot more time and energy before we started our real adventure. Yes, real one.hihi.

So we reached Christchurch Airport before we were picked up to Kea campervan agency which is located just a few minutes away from the airport. The briefing session took like, hours that I cant wait to toss our bag and suitcases to get some rest. Oh yes,did I tell you that  we have almost missed our flight back in Auckland. It was very nerve wrecking chasing and decision making moment. Imagine, we have like less than 1 hour to return our car to Jucy rental agent, when we were yet to check in. Thankfully Jetstar ground staff was so helpful and considerate to let us in at the very last minute. Huhu. Seriously tiring, mentally and physically.

Finding halal food in Christchurch is not as easy as in Auckland. We were starving thus decided to go  for vegetarian dinner in a nice Indian restaurant.

So we started our trip in Campervan heading to Lake Tekapo. Of course we couldnt resist to stop by every now and then to snap some pics before resuming our journey.

it was a very peaceful and stress-free drive, that we could enjoy the beautiful view while glancing to the GPS every now and then to ensure that we were on the right track.

We arrived at Lake Tekapo at noon, and it was rainy. So we decided to have our lunch while waiting for the rain to stop. And yes, it was time to cook in the campervan. Yay!

We were lucky that the was brighter when we finished everything and ready to enjoy this picturesque place.

Next place to rush to is Mt Cook. We need to get there before it was getting dark. The road was lonely and any unfortunate incident was the lassssst thing we wish to encounter.

The weather was pretty yucky when arrived at the location. We went longgg way to get here. Thus, be it sunny or rainy, we have no option but to make full use of the the day, no?

Our journey continued to Queenstown.

I lost count of hours spent on the road. It was not one or two hours surely. But the view along the way was enough to make us enjoy the drive to the destination.

Queenstown is well known for various extreme activities. We opted for less extreme but still enjoying the nice weather in Queenstown.

Apparently Queenstown is not as big as I thought. There are souvenir shops, halal kebab cafe and restaurant at Queenstownmall.

We spent the evening strolling at the nearby lake before having our dinner. Ah yes, it was Zera's birthday too!

We drove to Te Anau as our transit to our next attraction, Millford Sound. We started our journey from Te Anau in the morning and drove over two hours to Millford Sound.

We were lucky having rented the car from Jucy earlier, thus made us entitled to enjoy best price of all available cruises at the jetty.

The cruise took over 1 hour, and I have to say, this-is-a-must -do when you are in South Island. The experience on cruise, the breathtaking view of fjord around us are so priceless.

And so we took our own sweet time, cooked our lunch in the campervan, made ourselves comfortable by fulfilling all obligations, before we left to next place.

Our next destination was Fox Glacier.  We arrived in the place just in time when the day was getting dark. The place is famous with helicopter scenic tour. Yes, we couldn't afford it. Gah!

So the following morning we resumed our journey to our initial point, that was Christchurch. The drive took almost whole day. We stopped by for fuel, picture taking every now and then. 

Along the road, there are places where the topography was challenging to drive. Being an amateur campervan driver, we took precaution to drive very slow. And there was also days when we were not so lucky in one incident when we were forced to pull over by an angry local road user,just to lend our ears to hear his curses to our face for our slow speed on the 100km/h highway. Of course we were scared that the comboy-like man would take out his gun and shoot us to death. Huhu.

Nevertheless, we refused to allow the incident to take our good mood away. Thankfully the view of the place is pretty that we can stopped by to release the stress.

All in all, despite the bitter sweet moments throughout the 5-day journey exploring SouthIsland, we managed to keep ourselves safe to end of the trip. Alhamdulillah, this trip is indeed another eye-opener for His Almighty.

Thursday, June 11

14-day NZ Trip :North Island

Finally, the day has arrived, and we were  excited to start off our journey in New Zealand! We purchased the tix from KLIA to Auckland, with little awareness on how the New Zealand trip should have been explored.

So after a while, I purchase the plane tix from Auckland to Christchurch, in order to pursue our plan to South Island part.

We have spent a few days in North Island. Little that we expected, we have covered almost entire New Zealand at the end of the day becos that was not part of our initial plan, actually.

So we arrived at Auckland Airport at 10 pm local time, with time difference by 4 hours ahead Malaysia time.

We rented a sedan car, just perfect for 4 of us including our bulky suitcases. And best part about renting from Jucy is that we are entitled for special discounts for some fun activities and cruises. We were lucky that I still kept the evidence of this rental to enjoy good price for cruise at Millford Sound about a week later in South Island. Yippii~

                                                        No, no. This estima is just for show. Not the car we rented ok.

The first place we went was to Rotorua, which is 3 hours away from Auckland. It was very calm and relaxing long drive that we kept ohh and ahhh on the scenery along the way. Being the first timer drving in this country, it was hardly to feel stressful on the long, flat road with little incoming traffics and rarely seen houses of the local people. All we saw were sheeps and cows farm and green hills here and there. Very beautiful.

In Rotorua, we headed to Whakarewarewa to visit Maori traditional village and to watch their cultural performance.

Afterwards, we were brought touring around the village that is full of natural wonders like hotspring and geiser.

We were so hungry after touring around the village, thus decided to have little picnic at the nearby spot before leaving to Rotorua city. Nasik himpit and sambal bilis from Malaysia are forever best meal for our late lunch.

And we went to Rotorua Night Market too. Despite surrounded with white people, the vibes received and atmosphere of night market are similar with one we felt at home.

Oh yes, it was my birthday! Some little celebration with piece of cake and packets of maggi.Epic kan? hihi.

On the next day we went to Agrodom Sheep Farm. Oh man, never seen the ship as much as this place, seriously! The farm provides tour to sheep farm as well as  sheeps acrobatic performance.

There is also beautiful Huka Falls on the way to Lake Taupo. Mind you, this is a must drop-by spot even just for a while.

The turquoise color waterfalls captured our breaths instantly. This is rare!

The extreme activity like rapid is also available here but we chose to pose here and there while enjoying the beauty scenery in dry piece before we resume our journey to Lake Taupo.

We arrived at Lake Taupo almost in midday. Apart from its beautiful view, this place is also well known for extreme activity like bunge jump.

Lake Taupo is one of the largest natural lake in New Zealand. The picturesque scenery is just too priceless to miss out if we arrived in New Zealand,

That's it for southern island of North Island.  As the land of North Island is not soooo vast to explore, we also took the opportunity to drive up to the northern part of North Island.

This is totally unplanned itinerary to drive up to Cape of Reinga. Things started on our first night in Auckland when I realized that the flight Christchurch-Auckland was later than Auckland-KLIA.Had I not realized it this soon(err isnt it a bit late already?duhh), we might ended up stranded in Auckland Airport  waiting the next available tickets to purchase with the cost of fortune! So the whole night was not for rest from our long haul journey, but was spent to call all airlines  hotlines to decide our resolutions. Alhamdulillah we managed to secure MAS tix at a reasonable additional price with extension of a few more days in Auckland, that made up total of 14 days in NZ. Hihi

Back to North Island exploration, we stayed one night in Paihia. It is just a small town that we stopped for one night after over three hours drive from Auckland.

The evening in Paihia is so peaceful for a walk.

We snapped pics here and there,enjoyed the quite evening, forgot all our exhaustion before we called it a day.

On the following day, we resume our journey ahead to the tip of New Zealand, Cape of Reinga. The drive was quite adventurous, mind you to ensure your tank is full prior the journey as it was quite hard to find gas station-thanks to GPS in our car.

The journey to Cape of Reinga took almost 3 hours. But when we arrived, it was really worthwhile. The place is beautiful and we can see the meeting point of Tasmanian Sea and Pacific Ocean. 

We left Cape of Reinga with full of satisfaction. Time to go home!

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