Driving a hired campervan around New Zealand is a marvellous way of seeing the country at a relaxing pace. Recently I completed an eight week journey covering both North and South Islands. It was one of the best vacations I have ever experienced. And as a cartoonist, I could see the funny side of any problems that arose!
Two months of budget travel has meant I can offer the following advice for fellow travellers. Firstly do not take too much luggage. There is an art to living in a shoebox on wheels for weeks at a time. A minimalist approach to possessions will go a long way to making life easy on the road. Itís easier to find things when you arenít carrying too much. If you want to see your vacation dollars go further in New Zealand, consider staying overnight at domain reserves and motor camps. The domains are quite common, especially in the South Island. I found I could get a powered site for my campervan for as little as $5 NZ per night. This included shower facilities as well. Other motor camps with better facilities cost slightly more ( expect to pay around $20 - $30 NZ per night for a powered site, two adults) but for this you usually get use of a communal kitchen containing refrigerator and microwave.
I found these camp kitchens a great way to meet new friends and swap stories while travelling around New Zealand.
One of the things that makes New Zealand such a wonderful country for campervan touring is that you can see so much magnificent scenery in a small space.
Distances are not great, and if you like fabulous beaches, spectacular mountains and friendly people, you wonít find a better place. Don't forget to laze in the many thermal pools in this country. Make a point of visiting Rotorua, Taupo, and Waiwera for example. A long soak at the end of a hard day on the road is the best cure I know for relieving driver tension. You will find campervan rental costs cheaper if you visit this country off-season. For example plan your holiday for spring or autumn, and you can still get good weather with prices not as expensive as during summer.