See The World
Seek Adventure Travel Happy
So, we are just a few days away from leaving and a wrench gets thrown into the works. Pat decided to go online and start finding some places that we would like to park the van and camp for awhile, and bam! Trouble strikes. When we first started planning for our trip we found out that New Zealand is a freedom camping country. Which means you can camp anywhere, beaches, the side of the road, basically anwhere that isn't privately owned. But yesterday Pat found out that on April 22nd, a little over a week ago, New Zealand changed their policy on this. Basically freedom camping is banned everywhere. This decision was due in part because so many people were absuing this previledge and leaving trash and destroying the natural environment. It is also due in part because New Zealand is going to be hosting the Rugy World Cup next year and they are expecting a huge influx of tourist and figured that they needed to take some preventative action. While this is all understandable, it was a huge blow to our plans. Freedom camping was how we were going to be able to have our money last for so long, and gave us the freedom to go wherever, whenever, without really planning anything. We were gonna be free as birds! So much for being hippies and living in a van down by the river! Most disricts (or counties) in New Zealand also require that if you are going to camp that you must do so in a "self contained" vehicle. This requires you to have a toilet in your vehicle, basically a motor home or RV. A motorhome will be much more expensive then the van we had in mind, and it's not really what we had in mind. Also, the RV parks can really be expensive. Some of them charge $45/ night. At that rate we might as well stay in a hostel or something and not buy the RV. Needless to say our spirits were a little crushed last night while we tried to figure out a way to salvage our trip. After a lot of research this morning I have found that New Zealand's Department of Conservation offers and extensive network of camping sites that you can park a van/pitch a tent. Some of the sites are free, some of them cost anywhere from $3-$10 per person. This wasn't ideal, but it is certainly better than we thought things were going to work out yesterday. So, we decided to go ahead and buy a van, and we are just going to need to do a little more planning. After a bit of a scare, things apear to be back on track, a different track, but a good one. This is the link to the DOC website http://www.doc.govt.nz/ They have a lot of information about where you can camp, and the different types of facilites and hiking trails all over the country. We knew that there would be obstacles on our journey, I just didn't figure that there would be any before we left. I'm glad this one has overcome successfully.
Hi there! I'm Skeeter. I grew up moving a lot and that makes me a bit restless for travel and exploration. I started this blog with my husband Pat when we decided to backpack New Zealand for a year. We are always looking for the next adventure and are loving life. We're just your average couple with two sassy dogs and a love for travel. We're sharing our travels and the tips we pick up along the way.
Hello! I'm Liz. Blogging is very new to me, but I'm so excited to finally write as much as I talk!
"Don't forget to travel happy"-Skeeter & Liz