Upcoming New Zealand

I haven’t been on a long journey since the splendiferous trip to England and Spain in 2010, when I walked a part of the Camino de Santiago (which showed up emphatically in The Garden of Happy Endings).  In a couple of weeks, Christopher Robin and I are headed off to New Zealand for a month, to visit family and wander and recharge the batteries and celebrate a certain important birthday for CR.  I’ll be blogging and posting photos, of course, and I know some of you like these journeys a lot.

We leave Dec 27.  On the schedule are penguins and the earthquake-savaged Christchurch, Mitford Sound and Queenstown. I can’t wait to see those savagely beautiful mountains.  I hope we’ll be able to sea kayak (even if I’ll be nervous).  Everyone has insisted glow worms are really a treat.   I once visited the 90-mile beach in the far northlands and saw a wild horse laughing on a hill, and picked up a purple shell and held my breath over such long stretches of beach so unpopulated, so I want to take CR there.

The rest…who knows?  Bookshops and grocery stores.  Cookies and nephews.  That crazy accent and calla lilies and greenery.  Also, long long flights, which I admit I sort of love.  Time to read, to think, to be away from ordinary life.

Any tips? Anything you’ve seen I must not miss?  What are the best trips you’ve made? 

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14 thoughts on “Upcoming New Zealand

  1. Kelly

    I am excited for you both. It sounds as if it will be a glorious trip! I have heard great things of New Zealand. I do not have any good information for you as I rarely make it out of the States, although I am enjoying planning a trip to Ireland. I am looking forward to your tales, and hope you and CR enjoy every minute!

  2. Mel

    It sounds fabulous. I still haven’t managed to do a big trip to NZ to see all the cool things. You will have a wonderful time. But I feel that what would make it perfect would be a short side trip downunder ; ))

  3. Sonny

    I eagerly await my NZ trip through your travel blog and pictures. I thank you before hand for this opportunity. God keep you safe and sound and come back full of rest and memories.

  4. Have fun! I’ve never been to NZ, but have been fascinated with it since I was a child and learned of the maoris. Can’t wait to see your posts!

  5. Barbara, your trip sounds fabulous. Be sure and get a picture of the penguins and post it. I hope you and CR have a great time.

  6. Glad to know some of you will be coming along!

    Cheryl, long time no see. Hope all is well.

    Sonny, Thanks for the prayer.

  7. Rochelle

    The Garden of Happy Endings got me interested in the Camino de Santiago. Did you see the movie “The Way” with Martin Sheen? When I watched it, I thought of your book and what I had learned from it.

    Enjoy NZ. What a lovely trip that will be.

  8. Rochelle, I did see The Way–I got lucky and was able to even see it with a couple of mi peregrinas. Did you enjoy it?

    It seems to have really entered some level of the shared conscious.

  9. Rochelle

    I did like it very much, and even more so since I had the background from a book I loved so dearly! (yours)

  10. Renee

    Hi Barbara,
    Have a wonderful trip. If you’re going to Christchurch, why not take a day trip to the French influenced Akaroa? It’s a very pretty (and winding) road trip, and be sure to indulge in some famous New Zealand icecream while you’re there.
    There’s also seal and whale watching in Kaikoura, natural hotsprings at Manitou and over on the wild and untamed west coast the Franz Josef Glacier is fascinating and you can do an ice walk amongst the crevasses.
    So much to see, you’ll love it. Without doubt, the people are the best thing about the country. So friendly and welcoming.
    Renee xxx

  11. stephanie

    oh, how wonderful. i’m not sure why, but i’ve always been intrigued by new zealand. i see the pictures and it always seems to refreshing. i hope y’all have a great trip – full of wonder, laughter, and joy.

  12. Julie

    I don’t know if you are doing both the North and South Islands, but as a as a New Zealander – here are a few must see places.

    Cathedral Cove in the Coromandel – North Island
    Matakana/Pakiri Beach/Leigh – North Island
    Waitomo Caves for gloworms – North Island
    Nelson- Marlborough – South Island
    Punakaiki – Pancake Rocks – West Coast South Island

    Have a fabulous trip – may the weather stay as warm and fine as it is now.
    Merry Christmas

  13. Jule and Renee, thanks for the suggestions! I finally bought an actual guidebook and have been checking off actual stops along the way….I’ll add some of these, too.

  14. solowsolow

    After I read your post, I told my husband immediately, what a good read.

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