‘Now not somebody’s colonial outpost’: How Lonely Planet journey writers see New Zealand

How do you write a contemporary guidebook on New Zealand?

While you breathe journey, you would possibly marvel how one can nonetheless see nations – particularly your individual – with contemporary eyes to supply compelling, useful tales to travellers.

Lonely Planet’s new Expertise New Zealand ebook showcases the most effective of what Aotearoa has to supply, damaged down into areas and the highest actions in every. There’s additionally a piece on getting round and travelling safely, in addition to accessible and accountable journey suggestions together with how one can journey with a smaller footprint and assist native communities.

The insider’s information, which is a part of a brand new kind of guidebook collection from the writer, options contributions from 5 Kiwi journey writers, who share their insights and secrets and techniques.

* The Outdated Ghost Highway, West Coast: The very best pit-stops on Aotearoa’s longest single-track backcountry path
* Pondering of reserving a summer season tenting vacation? You might already be too late
* Pig nipples on a stick? Meals festivals to eat your means round this summer season

Lonely Planet travel writer Elen Turner at Dorothy Falls, Kaniere.


Lonely Planet journey author Elen Turner at Dorothy Falls, Kaniere.

Contributor Elen Turner grew up in Northland’s Bream Bay however has spent a lot of her grownup life overseas, till about 5 years in the past. The pandemic allowed her to spend extra time discovering the secrets and techniques of her house nation.

“Many different nations have massive mountains or stunning seashores, or fascinating tradition, or wild forests, or nice mountaineering, or stunning birds, or nice wine, or epic street journeys, or adventures sports activities, and so forth.

“Nevertheless it’s uncommon to have all of this in a single small nation. New Zealand has one in every of these items, after which the following one, and the following one, too.”


This West Coast vacation spot is house to a few of our most outstanding landscapes.

She advises travellers to take their time and go to each islands, however her favorite places are Prime of the South gems like Marlborough Sounds, the Nelson Lakes Nationwide Park and the Abel Tasman Nationwide Park.

“The area is sort of a microcosm of all that is nice about New Zealand, with snow-capped mountains, high-altitude lakes, gorgeous seashores, clear rivers for swimming in, not one however three nationwide parks, implausible food and drinks, mountaineering and mountain biking trails, the drowned river valleys of the Marlborough Sounds, and an important local weather,” she mentioned.

“Having grown up in Northland I will be fairly arduous to impress in relation to seashores elsewhere, however the seashores in Abel Tasman are next-level. Lakes Rotoiti and Rotoroa within the Nelson Lakes Nationwide Park present a breath of higher-altitude contemporary air after time on the coast.

“And irrespective of what number of occasions I go to the Marlborough Sounds, there’s all the time someplace new to go – as a result of the assorted arms, branches, reaches and inlets of the sounds are so arduous to get to and minimize off from one another, there’s all the time extra ready to be found.”

Lengthy-time Lonely Planet author Craig McLachlan, who lives in Queenstown, mentioned he needs travellers to know that we do issues our personal means in New Zealand.

“That Aotearoa is a contemporary, evolving, egalitarian, multi-ethnic nation, growing its personal distinctive tradition in its geographically distant location within the South Pacific – we’re not another person’s colonial outpost. We’re going our personal means as Kiwis and striving to do it properly.”

Long time Lonely Planet travel writer Craig McLachlan says New Zealand is a modern and evolving country.


Very long time Lonely Planet journey author Craig McLachlan says New Zealand is a contemporary and evolving nation.

He mentioned our geographical remoteness makes us distinctive, in addition to the great thing about the bodily panorama and the flexibility to discover distant locations. As for his favorite place to go to, it’s his present house of Queenstown.

“I consider that everybody ought to love the place they reside, and reside in a spot they love. I reside in and love Queenstown.”

For author Brett Atkinson, New Zealand has a singular cultural providing, with the chance to study Māori tradition, particularly with smaller household and iwi-owned operators. A few of his favorite experiences right here have been serving to to paddle a waka round Otago’s Waikouaiti River with Karitāne Māori Excursions, and exploring the Christchurch meals scene with Āmiki Cultural Meals Excursions.

Atkinson mentioned guests ought to know New Zealand shouldn’t be as small as they assume it’s.

“(It) is definitely greater than 25% larger than Nice Britain. Roads are sometimes winding and slower than in different nations, so be reasonable when planning an itinerary and do not attempt to see all of it.”

Missed by many guests, Atkinson loves residing in and exploring our greatest metropolis, Auckland.

“A day on the Hauraki Gulf will be as numerous as consuming in a winery restaurant on Waiheke, exploring Tiritiri Matangi’s chook sanctuary or strolling up Rangitoto. My favorite expertise across the West Coast seashores is the Mercer Bay Loop Observe excessive above Piha, after which again within the metropolis there’s nice harbourside eating places or low-cost and cheerful locations in Sandringham and alongside Dominion Highway.”

Additional south, he recommends the Dingleburn Wilderness Stroll alongside Lake Hawea with Wānaka’s Ridgeline Adventures, adopted by craft beers at Wānaka’s Rhyme X Cause and Floor Up breweries.

“As a New Zealand time out it is acquired all of it – a spectacular clifftop 4WD journey, very good lake views whereas on the stroll, and world-class beers (and infrequently a meals truck) to complete.”


Our greatest metropolis simply rivals something on provide abroad (video printed September 2021).

In the meantime, Atkinson’s must-do exercise that you simply gained’t discover anyplace else? Drive from Whakatāne to Tairāwhiti/Gisborne round East Cape.

“The Tolaga Bay wharf and the close by Cooks Cove walkway are favourites, the drive to the East Cape lighthouse is spectacular, and there is good wine and beer to stay up for round Gisborne. It is part of the nation in contrast to anyplace else.

“Do not forget a pāua or pulled pork pie at Cafe 35 in Tokomaru Bay.”

Expertise New Zealand, NZ$36.99 RRP. Accessible in bookstores or on-line at store.lonelyplanet.com.

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