Hoping you can help advise us. Me and my boyfriend are travelling to New Zealand in Nov 2014 for 3 weeks - we have budgeted £2,800 for return flights and camper van hire.
How much do you think we would need roughly for food, fuel and camp ground cost (can we park up and stay the night without being at a camp ground?)
We plan to do a few activities such as - sky diving, white water rafting, Maori culture tour, hobbit tour, kayaking, then possibly jet boating, whale watching, sailing etc (if the budget allows us). Does anyone have any idea how much we would be looking to pay for activities and where the best place is to do them?
Also if anyone has any tips or idea's on anything it would be greatly appreciated, especially what driving routes to take and must see's?
Will most of what you want to do be contained on one island or will you need to factor in a ferry crossing?
When I went in '08 I travelled solely around the North Island with two friends for a week. Fuel to fill a 4-Bed camper was around NZ$50 and we only stayed in a camp ground for one night but it was quite cheap from memory.
We started in Wellington—which is a burgeoning hip city and I wish we could have spent longer there—then we took in Hastings and Napier for the brilliant wineries, Rotorua, Otorohanga and the Waitomo Caves before heading to Auckland. With three weeks you can take your time, the area around Waitomo and Rotorua would be worth exploring more and there are plenty of activities in the region.
I've heard some pretty epic things about the Waitomo Caves Black Water Rafting but a Google search of the other activities brings up a bunch of companies on both North and South Islands.
I recommend stocking up at a supermarket before you head off so you have basic breakfast supplies etc. We went to PAK'nSAVE, which is more like a discount warehouse, and then picked up cheap lunches or did tours that included lunch.
Queenstown is the centre for adventure activities. Although for me the best was a heli hike trip at fox glacier.
All the Maori stuff is on north island, largely around rotorua and taupo.
Three weeks is quite a short time to get round it all; I'd try to just do one linear(ish) route like Auckland Rotorua Wellington Christchurch Fox Queenstown. That way you get more time to play and less driving.