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Thread: Off to New Zealand this November

  1. #1
    Rodwood
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    Off to New Zealand this November

    Hello riders,

    I'm heading to NZ for an 11 day southern island New Zealand trip that starts this October 31st through November 10th.
    I'll be starting and ending in Christchurch and making a loop of the island.
    It will be self guided and I am super stoked.
    I'm wondering if any fellow forum members have ridden down there?
    I'll be renting and riding with http://www.paradisemotorcycletours.co.nz
    Hoping to gather any insight or recommendations if you have them about New Zealand riding.
    Thanks much and safe riding!
    Last edited by rodneysherwood; 07-14-2014 at 05:07 PM.

  2. #2
    Administrator 20774's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodneysherwood View Post
    Hoping to gather any insight or recommendations if you have them about New Zealand riding.
    Keep left? Probably already heard that!! I want to do this one day...I spent some time there on a work project...loved the South Island and want to go back on a motorcycle. I liked Milford Sound, Queenstown, Invercargill is where Burt Munro is from...World's Fastest Indian...I think there's a museum there. I made it all the way to the tip of the South Island. Lots to see. A few other members have traveled there, too.

    Go to google and type in this - site:bmwmoa.org "new zealand" - you'll find other threads where New Zealand has been discussed.

    Lucky you! Have fun!!
    Kurt -- Forum Administrator ---> Resources and Links Thread <---
    '78 R100/7 & '69 R69S & '52 R25/2
    mine-ineye-deatheah-pielayah-jooa-kalayus. oolah-minane-hay-meeriah-kal-oyus-algay-a-thaykin', buddy!

  3. #3
    Benchwrenching PGlaves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 20774 View Post
    Invercargill is where Burt Munro is from...World's Fastest Indian...I think there's a museum there.
    We toured NZ with Fred Rau and Ted Simon a few years ago. We loved it. The "museum" is the displays at the hardware store in Invercargill where they have Burt Munro's Indian as well as the bike that was used in the movie.

    While I know you are "renting" a bike for a self guided tour, the company ought to be able to mark up a map for you with suggestions of good places to go and things to see. I'd ask them to do that when I went to pick up the bike or well before.

    It looks like they will do full guided tour, booking and such for a self guided tour, or straight bike rental.

    Don't miss Mt. Cook. or Pancake Rocks for sure.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://www.bigbend.net/users/glaves

  4. #4
    Rodwood
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    good idea

    Quote Originally Posted by 20774 View Post
    Go to google and type in this - site:bmwmoa.org "new zealand" - you'll find other threads where New Zealand has been discussed.
    thanks for the tip!

  5. #5
    Rodwood
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    Quote Originally Posted by PGlaves View Post

    While I know you are "renting" a bike for a self guided tour, the company ought to be able to mark up a map for you with suggestions of good places to go and things to see. I'd ask them to do that when I went to pick up the bike or well before.

    It looks like they will do full guided tour, booking and such for a self guided tour, or straight bike rental.

    Don't miss Mt. Cook. or Pancake Rocks for sure.
    Yes, the tour company is providing the bike and pre-loaded GPS route.
    Cannot wait to see NZ! it looks pretty amazing.

  6. #6
    sMiling Voni's Avatar
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    When we visited in 2010 I distilled my many pictures into my favorites in these categories:

    People:
    http://s320.photobucket.com/user/Gla...?sort=6&page=1

    Food:
    http://s320.photobucket.com/user/Gla...?sort=6&page=1

    Views:
    http://s320.photobucket.com/user/Gla...?sort=6&page=1

    AND, Too good not to share:
    http://s320.photobucket.com/user/Gla...?sort=6&page=1





    And here is the blog we posted to the forum:
    http://www.bmwmoa.org/forum/showthre...nd-Hawaii-2010

    Internet was spotty and/or expensive so we shared more when we came home again.

    ENJOY!

    Voni
    sMiling

    http://www.bigbend.net/users/glaves/
    Live fully. Laugh deeply. Love widely.
    BMW MOA Ambassador / FOM / Roving Forum Moderator/
    Selected Friends of Wile E Coyote/ A Million BMW sMiles

  7. #7
    rabid reader dbrick's Avatar
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    Here's some notes from an email I sent a friend recently; sorry about the inconsistent formatting.

    We've been three times now. Each time, we've said "Well, we like it but we've seen NZ now and it's so far away, we won't be going again." And then we go again.

    Traveling there is easy, both because they speak English and because, on balance, they're calm and pleasant and helpful. Because Kiwis have a tradition of young people traveling overseas before/during/after college, the place is pretty cosmopolitan and the food better than one expects.

    Trip #1 2000 - South Island only. Flew into Christchurch, rented a GS1100 from Te Waiponamu, rode CCW around the island for two weeks.

    Trip #2 2010 - South Island mostly. We took Jon (then 22) and Cameron (then 28 ). Flew into Dunedin, rented a car, drove CW around the South Island, turned in the car at the Picton Ferry terminal and took the ferry to Wellington; stayed one night (walked and saw Te Papa, the natiional museum, really really wonderful), then flew home. Three weeks total.

    Trip #3 2014 - North Island only. Did a home exchange in Wellington, drove around locally, then flew to Auckland, stayed in Devonport across the harbor (smaller feeling, really recommended) then rented a car and drove up to the Bay of Islands. Three weeks total.

    In 2000, there was little internet connectivity and it was tough to make reservations. By this year's trip, just about everyone had email and websites. Much easier.

    The South Island is prettier (to our eyes): fewer people, more dramatic scenery. The North Island's more developed, but really - by comparison with what we have here in the US - once you're out of downtown Auckland or Wellington, it's pretty countrified everywhere.

    These were out "must-dos" and "can avoids:"

    South Island: near Dunedin, see the albatross and blue-eyed penguin sanctuaries at the end of the Otago Peninsula,
    and go to Milford or Doubtful Sound. We took an overnight cruise on Milford Sound and it was wonderful being out there on the water at the base of the cliffs.
    the west coast (wild and empty) and the glaciers
    Tauranga Bay restaurant. We stayed twice in homestays at Cape Foulwind; great seafront walk, local pub?and nothing else. The local town Westport is 10 miles away and a thin 1500 people. Take a glowworm cave tour. The Coaltown mining museum is interesting for its exhibit of the Denniston Incline.
    Pancake Rocks are really interesting.
    Queenstown. Adventure sports (bungy jumping, rafting, jetboating - we rafted), great ride on an old excursion steamboat across the lake to a Disneyland-like farmstead (big!) on the other side with sheep dog demos, etc. etc.
    Arrowtown, near Queenstown. Cute, arty
    Maruia Hot Springs (if you can stand the insects - take repellent!); Hamner also has hot springs, but is a family resort town of little charm. Maruia is out in the country by itself.
    Many travelers like Nelson for its art scene, but I found it an essentially charmless midsize city.
    We kayaked and hiked in Abel Tasman National Park, at the north end of the South Island. The experience was fairly touristy, but it was lovely and tropical out there.
    We liked Lyttleton, Christchurch's port; the town was badly damaged in the 2013 earthquake
    We didn't see Akaroa, the old French colony town on the Banks Peninsula, and would have liked to.
    Dunedin feels like San Francisco

    -D
    Last edited by dbrick; 07-15-2014 at 03:03 PM.
    David Brick
    Santa Cruz CA
    2007 R1200R

  8. #8
    Live it, or live with it
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    We toured in 2013 with South Pacific Mototours. I'll add: a big +1 for Milford Sound cruise;
    I didn't care for Queenstown--too 'touristy', but the road from Queenstown along the lake to Glenorchy has to be one of the best rides in the world; spend some time at Aoraki/Mt. Cook; we enjoyed a whale watching cruise out of Kaikoura.

    On the North Island, definitely spend time at Te Papa museum in Wellington; in Rotorua, Te Puia 'museum/park' highlights Maori culture and geothermal features, Te Po is Te Puia?s evening cultural experience (a little kitschy, but informative and generally fun); great riding and scenery around Coromandel Forest Park.

    I found WiFi to be spotty, bandwidth limited, and expensive. A smart phone with a data plan proved much more reliable for web access, email, blog updates, etc. We picked up Vodafone simcards for our unlocked GSM phones at the Auckland airport.
    Motor On '/,

  9. #9
    Rodwood
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    Quote Originally Posted by Voni View Post
    When we visited in 2010 I distilled my many pictures into my favorites in these categories:

    People:
    http://s320.photobucket.com/user/Gla...?sort=6&page=1

    Food:
    http://s320.photobucket.com/user/Gla...?sort=6&page=1

    Views:
    http://s320.photobucket.com/user/Gla...?sort=6&page=1

    AND, Too good not to share:
    http://s320.photobucket.com/user/Gla...?sort=6&page=1





    And here is the blog we posted to the forum:
    http://www.bmwmoa.org/forum/showthre...nd-Hawaii-2010

    Internet was spotty and/or expensive so we shared more when we came home again.

    ENJOY!

    Voni
    sMiling

    Thank you so much!

  10. #10
    Rodwood
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    Thanks for the great tips!

  11. #11
    Rodwood
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    Quote Originally Posted by jkersh1 View Post
    We toured in 2013 with South Pacific Mototours. I'll add: a big +1 for Milford Sound cruise;
    I didn't care for Queenstown--too 'touristy', but the road from Queenstown along the lake to Glenorchy has to be one of the best rides in the world; spend some time at Aoraki/Mt. Cook; we enjoyed a whale watching cruise out of Kaikoura.

    On the North Island, definitely spend time at Te Papa museum in Wellington; in Rotorua, Te Puia 'museum/park' highlights Maori culture and geothermal features, Te Po is Te Puia?s evening cultural experience (a little kitschy, but informative and generally fun); great riding and scenery around Coromandel Forest Park.

    I found WiFi to be spotty, bandwidth limited, and expensive. A smart phone with a data plan proved much more reliable for web access, email, blog updates, etc. We picked up Vodafone simcards for our unlocked GSM phones at the Auckland airport.
    Cannot wait to go. Thanks for the heads up on the internet and smart phone.

  12. #12
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    Off to New Zealand this November

    Also look at the older thread here in "Just Ridin' for "New-Zealand-Edelweiss-Motor-Cycle-Tour" on page 3
    Only a little dated but good variety.
    Don't get bogged down w/ information.
    1$NZ = 87-88 Cents US 7/21/14. Just take lots of money.
    Don't get bogged down by being cheap either.
    You are going to have a great time.
    Charlie

  13. #13
    Registered User
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    Touring NZ

    Hi. My wife and I, from Vancouver Island, spent 4 weeks March of 2012 on a 2007 Suzuki DL1000 touring both islands. Although it was one of their worst summers ever for rain and cold, we had a great time thanks to the great people, food, and scenery. I would agree generally that south island riding is the most scenic. When heading to Greymouth south from Nelson look for Blackball and stay at the Formerly Hilton Hotel. It is popular with bikers. You can find small seal coated roads from there to take you over Arthur's Pass to the east side. If you're riding dual sport bikes, try Molesworth Station near Hamner Springs. Riding the west coast south to Franz Joseph is park like with many one way bridges. Watch the signage for traffic flow. Queenstown was a bit too much for us, but the ride to Teanu and Milford Sound made up for it. There were no bad roads. Stray a little or a lot. You will always find good food and accommodation. If on the north island, the forgotten highway from Hamilton to ?Taupo was another great ride. So many roads, so little time. Have fun.

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