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STA Travel Blog

The Most Amazing Experiences to be Found on New Zealand’s South Island

Lakes so blue you’d think they’d been photoshopped if you hadn’t seen them with your own eyes, mighty ancient glaciers, rolling green hills, snow capped mountains and rugged beaches where you can spot whales and dolphins playing between the waves.

If you like a bit of breathtaking beauty thrown in with your travel experiences then this could be your little slice of heaven. Here are our favourite ways to really get the very best from your time.

Watch the whales in the ocean off Kaikoura.

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The Two Definitive New Zealand Road Trips

Now, before you bite our heads off, let us explain what we mean. There is definitely more to New Zealand than the stops included on these itineraries (we’ve neglected the north coast of the South Island for example), and the timings are, to say the least, ambitious.

But, if you don’t have the luxury of 3 months in New Zealand, you can use these routes to plan a trip that takes in the highlights. If you’re lucky enough to have even more time, you can build and expand on these to create one epic adventure around the whole country. So here we go, one route for the North Island and one for the South Island, taking in the best that New Zealand has to offer.

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Active Breaks in New Zealand: Summer VS Winter

Itching to race down dunes, take on a glacier hike or slice through snow some-place far, far away? From the tip of Cape Reinga down to the wildlife-rich Stewart Island, New Zealand’s got you covered – and so do we.

All you’ve got to do is pick your season of choice and hold on to your helmet!

Cathedral Cove

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Quick Start Guide to the Thai Islands

Today’s blog comes from STA Travel’s James Greenslade, who has left his Oz homeland for a few months to explore the UK. He can currently be found staring at still light sky at 9:30pm, shaking his head and muttering about witchcraft.

Thailand’s many islands are a staple on the backpacker, flashpacker, gap year, sabbatical, long break, beach holiday, and any other circuit you can think of. And there’s a reason – they’re bloody brilliant.

But the sheer number of versions of paradise to choose from, and hassle of wading through millions of blog posts, articles, reddit threads and Instagram pictures, can leave you in an agony of indecision about which to choose. No more. Check out our quick start guide to the Thai Islands for those who want less time researching, more time sunbathing.

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4 Incredible USA Wilderness Destinations

Is there any country with a more diverse wilderness than the USA? Sure, Kenya has national parks teaming with wildlife, and Australia boasts the Outback, and New Zealand has some insanely stunning countryside – but the USA has all this, and then some.

That well-spouted statistic that only 30% of Americans have a passport may shock us Europeans, but actually, when you think of the ample opportunities for exploring that their own country, it’s not that surprising.

From soaring mountains and lush greenery to vast deserts and icy expanses, this region has enough going on to give even the most well-travelled explorer a serious case of itchy feet.

A geyser erupts in the USA's Yellowstone National Park

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