It’s always a real buzz to take clients away from the crowds, to lesser known regions, and to those spectacular and special places that only the locals know. So working with Keith and Alison Gaines on their 6 weeks adventure was a real treat. Our thanks to them for taking the road less travelled and for sharing this guest blog and their photos.
A huge thanks to Paul and his team at New Zealand In Depth for expertly organising our superb “tramping” trip. Our challenge to Paul was to link together two classic Department of Conservation treks in New Zealand – 4 days around Lake Waikaremoana and 5 days on the Heaphy Track – and then 6 days on the Overland trek in Tasmania. And, with relaxed rest downtime after each.
Not easy given the need to book huts and tours a long time in advance and co-ordinate departure dates. To vastly increase our enjoyment about flora and fauna and current issues, we opted for guided treks as recommended by Paul. It certainly meant carrying a lot less gear!
Each of the treks was excellent. Superb scenery; knowledgeable, hardworking guides; and we met some great folk who are now friends. One memorable highlight was flying back from Karamea to Golden Bay in a 6 seater after completing the Heaphy Track over the way we had walked—relaxing our aches in the hot tub in our hotel in Golden Bay 90 minutes after the end of the trek!
For downtime we relaxed in Stargazers B&B in the Coromandel; the Bay of Coves in Queen Charlottes Sound; and Freycinet Retreat. Highly recommend the empty beaches on the Coromandel; Alistair’s night time star watching from his astronomy at Stargazers; and the scenery, seafood and the wallabies living under our cabin in Freycinet. Not to mention the Hotel Islington in Hobart which was one of the best places we’ve ever stayed.
We did make it a more difficult challenge for Paul. A few weeks before departure we had to change our itinerary in Tasmania. With a minimum of fuss to us, Paul rearranged our plans and got us into the iconic Pumphouse.
And, then after spending time with good friends in Melbourne, Alison flew home. Keith flew back to Tasmania and to the wild South West and did a 7 day sea kayaking trip with Roaring 40s -fantastic.
A totally great trip – and well done New Zealand In Depth for getting the balance just right for us. Until next time!
We relish a challenge, so do get in touch if you’ve been told something isn’t possible, or if you have very specific requirements for your trip. We will work hard to make sure your trip is exactly right for you. You can email us at explore@newzealand-indepth, or give us a ring for a no-obligations chat on 01298 74040.