It’s Friday so that can only mean one thing here at the STA Travel Blog… It’s Ask the Experts time!
This week Claire tackles a question about New Zealand from a very confused Sammi in Southampton. Don’t forget, if you have a travel question you’d like to put to our Experts you can email us now, and we’ll put it to them right here on the blog very soon! Ok, so here’s this week’s question, Claire, give it your best shot!
Hi Experts I’m going to New Zealand next month (North and South island) and I know it’s winter there now, what kind of weather can I expect? And also what kind of activities would you recommend I do? Sammi, Southampton
Hmmmm, and interesting question, and the good thing is, New Zealand has SO much to offer, you can’t fail to find adventure. Lets see what Claire suggests for you Sammi…
Claire Whittington from STA Travel Brighton says…
Winter is such a brilliant time to visit New Zealand and although it is cold and snowy in some parts it shouldn’t stop you from doing anything. I went in winter time and I honestly think it is the best time to go as it’s exactly what you want New Zealand to be; sunsets over snow topped mountains, glacier walking, skiing and chilling out in hot tubs.
The weather in the North Island should be cold and crisp and hopefully in the South you will get snow so you can make the most of the winter sports on offer in places such as Queenstown. When I was there we didn’t get much rain, it was the kind of winter I wish we got in England where it’s clear blue skies and sunny (just cold) but you can wrap up warm and sit outside with a hot chocolate or nice glass of New Zealand red wine and enjoy the views.
You can still do all the usual New Zealand activities but just be aware stuff like sky diving, bungy jumping, whale watching, swimming with dolphins are weather dependant so make sure you give yourself enough time in each place in case so if an activity gets cancelled one day you can do it the next day.
I’m too much of a wimp to bungy or sky dive so my suggestions are all fairly tame but I would definitely recommend the Glacier walking at Franz Josef, you can either hike up and then walk across the glacier or you can get a helicopter to the top of a glacier and land on fresh snow/ice where no one else has trodden which is pretty cool!
My other favourite was swimming with wild dolphins at Bay of Islands. You will enjoy a boat trip whilst you find a pod of dolphins before you don a long wetsuit and jump in to the (freezing cold) sea. Be aware dolphins swim really really quick so you have to be pretty fast and do rolls and make noises through your snorkel so they want to come and play with you. I kind of thought I would be surrounded by dolphins all excited to see me in the water but in reality they expect you to work hard to enjoy their company!