My name is alexia I will b getting married in September of 2012. Will be traveling from colorado. My fiancé and I want to go to new zeland. I need help planning our trip? We want to go relax and see sights. I'm disabled so I can't do much. We would like to rent a car and go see the sights. What are the best places to go in new Zealand? We are on a budget honeymoon, so we don't want to go to outrageous cities. We found a town that looked cool I can't find the name. It once u fly to Auckland u take another plan about an hour to the town the. Have a trolly that takes us up a moutain. We would like to go there and spend a few days and then rent a car and drive to cool places and stay in bed and breakfasts. If someone could help that would b great. If someone knows of a great web sight that can plan my trip for me that won't cost a whole lot. We're on a budget. Thank you.
The only town in New Zealand I can think of offhand with a gondola would be Queenstown, which is indeed quite a pretty town, with pretty views over the Remarkables and Lake Wakatipu. Do keep in mind that September will be early spring in New Zealand, and that the mountains around Queenstown are a ski area; generally the ski season runs until late September, so you might still have to deal with snow (probably not so much in Queenstown itself, but maybe on the passes when driving away from there), and accommodation will probably need to be booked well in advance.
In general, the South Island of New Zealand (where Queenstown is located) is quite gorgeous. The Southern Alps run along the length of the island, and you'll have gorgeous views of them from almost everywhere. Places which'd I'd recommend going to from Queenstown would be Milford Sound, where frequent boats make a roundtrip through this fjord (doable as a long daytrip) and Mt. Cook village (~3.5 hours away by car; but you can easily take more with stops; quite a lot to see en route), which is set in the middle of Mt. Cook National Park. Unfortunately accommodation here is about as expensive as it gets in New Zealand, but (on a day when the clouds aren't hanging low) the view of Mt. Cook is amazing, and I'm pretty certain I remember a series of short but wheelchair-accessible trails around the town and to a few viewpoints. (In general you might be happily surprised by how many accessible trails you'll find.) Christchurch is another quite pretty town, but after a series of eathquakes in recent years, I don't know how much it's still worth visiting. Maybe someone else will pass by who's been there recently and can comment. From Christchurch you could go further north along the coast to Kaikoura (where whale watching trips leave, though I don't know if those boats are accessible) and then to Picton and the wine area around there, if you enjoy that.
I'd also recommend Auckland itself, which is a remarkably pretty and park-like city, with always a ton of activities going on.
Finally, trying to confirm my impression about the accessible trails in Mt. Cook, I stumbled upon this page about another couple travelling through New Zealand with a focus on accessibility. Might be useful to you for some practical tips and things.
Good luck, and enjoy your trip! Effectively everywhere you'll go in New Zealand will be gorgeous, so don't be afraid about making things up as you go!
As far as the best attractions are considered then I would advice you to go for Fiordland National Park, Kaikoura, Coromandel Peninsula, Bay of Islands and Queenstown. These are far best places according to me.
Don't worry to much about having a disability as new Zealand has very good access in most tourist destinations.
I do suggest driving as you can see so much just looking out the window. Also you can get a parking permit too you dont have to worry about where and hen to park see here http://mobilityparking.org.nz/travelling/visiting-new-zealand
As for gondolas Rotoroa in the north Island has one. Other places I suggest are in the North Island: Auckland, bay of islands and Napier and travel down to the south island from Wellington by boat/ferry. South island: has been mentioned already but these are places you shouldn't forget, Christchurch, kaikora and drive down the west coast for this you just need money for fuel but it's amazing and don't forget to go to Milford sounds its beautiful look here It's a good starting point http://www.realjourneys.co.nz/
This is a backpacking website but awesome for info when your on a budget
For low cost accomadation you could stay in a hostel as they are everywhere in NZ, have you thought about getting a campervan (not sure if suitable)? For budget hotels try these
Ps. Plan the trip yourself, itll be better. Good luck please message us if you need anymore help.
So when would b the best time to go to new Zealand. Should we wait tell October ? The wedding will b in September. When do u all think would b good weather to go.
[ Edit: Edited on 18-Feb-2012, at 09:39 by Lexsings ]
I find this hard to answer, as September/October are are the only two months of the year I haven't been in New Zealand myself, but generally any month is a good month to go. I'm definitely not saying that you shouldn't go in September; just that circumstances will be a bit different at this tail-edge of winter, and you'll have to take that into account with your plans (for example there's a small but not-entirely-negligible chance that passes will be closed due to snow; so you should build in some extra slack in your itinerary wrt flights and such - and in ski areas you should book accommodation in advance). I was in Lake Tekapo (close to Mt. Cook) in August, and I absolutely loved how gorgeous everything looked snowed under. For me it was a reason to go back in winter a second time a few years later. But on the other hand, I can imagine that you'd rather have a bit warmer temperatures to deal with, so you could either put more focus on the North Island (where it's always warmer, especially north of Auckland), or indeed go a month later, when spring will be in full swing.
NZ weather is unpredicatable - this summer most of the country has experienced an unseasonably high percentage of rain, while us guys here in the bottom of the South Island (the part of the country usually known for its rain) have had months on end of hot, sunny weather! It's best to just come to NZ and take what you get, tourists/travellers are here year round and always enjoy themselves no matter what the weather As bevsmith said above, it was probably Rotorua you were thinking of with the gondolas, as its only a short flight from Auckland. Rotorua is popular with travellers and has some Maori cultural experiences you might enjoy. I also have to second everything thats been said about Queenstown, I live a 2hr drive from there and have visited sooo many times in my life, but love to go back for day trips
Alexa how long are you going for?
Also drive to rotoroa It's 3hrs but there are towns on the way and NZ is beautiful everywhere.
Flying costs and you won't get to see anything.
[ Edit: Edited on 18-Feb-2012, at 15:23 by bevsmith ]
See my post about NZ, under my name a few years back.
I am not able to find the itinerary that came from some official NZ tourism agency.
It was for 14 day. Inclued both the N and S Islands.
Traveled on my own by care and day by day accomadations. and hit many of the main points on a self tour based on NZ tourist bureau: North Island -- Auckland, Rotorua, Napier, Wellington, South Island -- Wyakia, Christchurch, Dunedin, Taahna, Melford Sound, Queenstown, Glenarch, Fox and Hans Glaciers. Blue and the Pass back to Christchurch. Met really fine people.