Airbnb-ing New Zealand

Tripoto
16th Feb 2017
Photo of Airbnb-ing New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

The trip to New Zealand with my parents dates back to Feb of 2017. It being summer was the best time to visit the country. Two of the things that we wanted to implement on this trip were - planning the entire trip on our own (there was an incident in one of our customised tours to UK that triggered this, which I will narrate in my upcoming post) and go for Airbnb for our accommodation. I was given the sole responsibility of planning the trip within a budget, by my dad. The plan was to cover the major cities of New Zealand - Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Queenstown. After considerable spend of my internet bandwidth on various travel sites, I figured out that booking a flight from New Delhi to Auckland and vice versa would be the most cost effective. So our itinerary looked something like Auckland --> Wellington --> Christchurch --> Queenstown --> Auckland.

It was almost 11 at night when we had landed in Auckland after a 16 hours transit. We took a shuttle from the airport to our Airbnb home at Epsom. It was dark and the streets were empty. To locate our home at that point of time was quite a task. However we were lucky enough when a couple of young lads ,who had probably come out for a smoke, saw us. Finally they showed us the place and helped us with our luggage. The first sight of our Airbnb room at Auckland surely gave us "Hostel" feels. And soon we succumbed to a deep slumber on the first night at the land of the Kiwis.

What we did in Auckland?

- Explored the city on Hop on Hop off bus tour

- Experienced the glowing worms in the Waitomo Caves

- Did a day tour to Waiheke Islands and enjoyed the taste of their local wines in "Wild on Waiheke"

- Hiked till the top of Mount Eden to enjoy a picturesque view of the Auckland city and take a glimpse of the dormant volcano (when you have a super excited dad who is enthusiastic about hiking, you definitely can't miss this)

- Did a day tour to Rotorua to experience the geo-thermically active sites - the mud pools and the geysers

- Went on pub-hopping in the Quay street and Queen street at night (Thanks to my cool cousins who did not let me miss this opportunity)

- Soaked in the sun in the Mission Bay Beach

Our Airbnb in Epsom Auckland

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Sharing our dinner with other Airbnb guests

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Shopping from a nearby store

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

During Hop on Hop off

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Auckland main city

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions
Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Waitomo Glow caves - It is heavenly inside (you cant click pictures inside)

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Waitomo Glowworm Caves

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Waitomo Glowworm caves

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Mount Eden

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions
Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

The ferry terminal for Waiheke islands from Quay Street

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Enroute Waiheke

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Approaching Waiheke

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Waiheke island

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Vineyards in Wild On Waiheke

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

A beach in Waiheke Island

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

You cannot miss the Hokey Pokey ice-cream when in New Zealand

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Mission Bay Beach

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Auckland local guide (cousin)

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

By the beach

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Auckland Nightlife

Photo of Auckland, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

The geothermal sightings - spraying of the natural geysers, bubbling of the gases at mud pool were the main attractions of Rotorua, a geo-thermally active town in New Zealand (4 hours by bus from Auckland). We purchased the tickets for the geothermal park on reaching Rotorua. The pungent odour of the gases in the air takes you back to the good old days of the Chemistry lab.

After the geothermal tour, we headed towards the lake Rotorua. We spent some time by the lake before heading back to Auckland. As we sat back enjoying the cool and fresh breeze of the lake, I got engaged in a quick chat with a person from Spain who was on a vacation for 3 months in Rotorua. No wonder he was taken aback when he heard that Rotorua was only a day trip for us.

Geysers in Rotorua

Photo of Rotorua, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Birds fall prey to the acidic waters

Photo of Rotorua, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

At Waiotapu Mud pool

Photo of Rotorua, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Waiotapu mud pool

Photo of Rotorua, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Lake Rotorua

Photo of Rotorua, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Lake Rotorua

Photo of Rotorua, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

An overnight bus journey from Auckland (in one of the most inexpensive bus "Manabus") landed us in Wellington. The bus dropped us at the Quay street. We took a taxi from the Quay street to reach our Airbnb home. Our Airbnb home was a beautiful property located on an isolated hill. The metro station and a departmental store located near the house were a blessing in disguise.

What we did in Wellington?

We had two days in Wellington. We spent the first day on Hop on Hop off visiting the famous attractions such as - the Parliament House, the Museum, the Wellington cable car, the Rose garden etc. The best part of the day was roaming in and around the Parliament House of the Kiwis and learning about their transparent democracy. Had we planned our tour wisely, we could also have seen their Prime Minister.

We spent the second day cruising to the northern most point of the South Islands - Picton. It was a 3 hour ferry journey. We spent 2 delightful hours at Picton exploring every nook and corner of it and got back to the capital.

Our cosy two bedroom Airbnb in Wellington

Photo of Wellington, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

The bee-hive shaped structure behind is the New Zealand Parliament

Photo of Wellington, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

View from the top of the Wellington cable way

Photo of Wellington, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Wellington

Photo of Wellington, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

The inter-islander ferry

Photo of Wellington, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

The northernmost point of the South Island - Picton

Photo of Wellington, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

On our way to Picton

Photo of Wellington, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Picton

Photo of Wellington, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Picton

Photo of Wellington, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

We flew from Wellington to Christchurch.

The 2011 earthquake at Christchurch shattered the beautiful city of Christchurch. This was evident from the undergoing construction that was proceeding at a rather slow pace. The city was still recovering from the gruesome damage caused by one of the deadliest earthquakes.

We were hosted by one Mrs Judith in Christchurch. They shared their two cosy bedrooms and a part of their kitchen with us.

What we did in Christchurch?

We skipped the Hop on Hop off at Christchurch and instead took local buses. Apparently, one can be exempted from buying return tickets if you return within 2 hours. Of the few places that we explored in Christchurch were -

1) Gondola, which takes you to the top of Mount Cavendish; do not forget to take the Time Tunnel ride that walks you down the memory lanes of Christchurch and relish some lip-smacking snacks at the Red Rock cafe enjoying the breath-taking view over the Canterbury Plains out to the mighty Southern Alps.

2) Walked down the Sumner Beach

3) Strolled in the Botanical Garden

The evenings at Christchurch were mostly spent on listening to the tales of the 2011 earthquake from the horse's mouth.

Photo of Christchurch, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Our two bedroom Airbnb

Photo of Christchurch, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Room 1

Photo of Christchurch, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Room 2

Photo of Christchurch, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Atop Mt Cavendish on Gondola

Photo of Christchurch, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Mt Cavendish

Photo of Christchurch, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

What a view!!

Photo of Christchurch, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Gondola base

Photo of Christchurch, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Sumner Beach

Photo of Christchurch, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Sumner Beach

Photo of Christchurch, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Sumner Beach

Photo of Christchurch, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Christchurch Botanic Garden

Photo of Christchurch, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Christchurch Botanic Garden

Photo of Christchurch, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Our last destination - Queenstown was like the dessert in a four course meal (the best part). Our Airbnb home at Queenstown was a wooden cabin amidst the mountains.

For people who want to skip adventure, Queenstown was about beautiful lakes, amazing fiords, picturesque landscape. Getting clicked at any of the pit stops was like being part of those calendar photos that I was always in awe of.

What we did in Queenstown?

- Explored the beautiful lakes in Queenstown

- Visited the Milford Sound

- Went on a day tour to Lake Wanaka

<3

Photo of Queenstown, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Lake Waikatipu

Photo of Queenstown, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Strolling in the empty streets of Queenstown

Photo of Queenstown, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Lake Wanaka

Photo of Queenstown, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

On our way to Wanaka

Photo of Queenstown, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions
Photo of Queenstown, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Mirror Lake

Photo of Queenstown, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

On our way to Milford Sound

Photo of Queenstown, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Milford Sound

Photo of Queenstown, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions
Photo of Queenstown, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Soaking in sun

Photo of Queenstown, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

Our pet friendly home at Queenstown

Photo of Queenstown, New Zealand by Globetrotter’s Confessions

My lungs had a great detoxifying time for 15 days. The beautiful blue lakes, the tall mountains, the craters of the dormant volcanoes, the shining leaves of the trees, the clean air, the benevolent Kiwis- it appeared as if each one of them had a beautiful tale to tell. This trip to New Zealand with my parents will always remain close to my heart.

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