Short Trip 4K: New Zealand in 14 Days [Full Episode, English]
Hello and welcome to "Short Trip". You want to travel the world for months? Thats what we all would love to do but often we just can‘t afford the time. With “Short Trip” we will show you how you can explore a country or a region in the shortest amount of time and take the most out of it on an individualized route. Of course you are able to cut, adjust or change the trip, if you are on your own, according to your wishes.
Traveling with us also means being on the road. We rarely spend more than one night in one place. So never forget: the way is the goal. And now lean back and let yourself be inspired! Welcome to New Zealand! Here are some facts for you: New Zealand was discovered and populated by the Polynesians at the end of the 13th century.
After its discovery by the Dutch navigator Abel Tasman in 1642 and the arrival of numerous British settlers, the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi in February 6 1840 is regarded as the founding day of New Zealand. Today, there are about 4.2 million Kiwis, of which nearly 15% are Maori, the natives, in the land of the "long white cloud". By the way, there are about 9 sheep for every inhabitant! New Zealand consists of two islands: The North Island and the South. If you were to travel from the Cape Reinga on the North Island to Bluff on the South Island, a distance of 2223km would lie ahead of you. The winter starts in July, the summer in December.
Christmas in shorts? No problem! Most tourists can be seen between December and February. If you like it quiet, you better pay a visit in spring or autumn. The weather is even more varied at that time, but you can also enjoy the country in peace and save money on flights, rental cars and accommodation.
You can travel New Zealand by bus, airplane or by foot. But quite honestly: nothing is nicer than to explore the islands on your own with a rental car or motorhome. Tip: Local car rental companies are usually cheaper. But beware: in New Zealand they drive on the left! Our two-week short trip starts in "Queenstown" in the South Island and leads us to "Auckland" in the North Island. We have scheduled 7 days for each island.
We travel in May. The colorful vegetation make a journey at this time a special experience. The cooler climate is not suitable for a beach holiday, but in autumn there are far fewer tourists than in the high season. Welcome to Queenstown. If you are looking for thrills, this is the place for you! Whether Paragliding or bungee jumping, everything is possible here.
But the city, surrounded by the fascinating landscape of the New Zealand Alps, has much more to offer. We use the rest of the day after we arrive for a ramble through downtown and the Queenstown Gardens. The next morning hiking is announced! We save the tickets for the “Queenstown Gondola” and opt for the Tiki Trail, which takes us to the gondola's mountain station in just under 1.5 hours and rewards us with a fantastic view. Those who have more time will find many worthwhile destinations in the Queenstown region.
For example the popular "Milford Sound", the western town "Arrowtown" and the contemplative "Wanaka". The “Haast Pass” also leads to the "Franz Josef" and "Fox" Glacier. On the other hand, we drive towards the east to the second largest city in the South Island: "Dunedin". On the way there are many opportunities for stopovers: sleepy villages, wineries and of course the beautiful scenery. Arriving in "Dunedin" we go for a voyage of discovery. The city, founded in 1848 by Scottish settlers, is noted for its origins.
The architecture is reminiscent of cities like "Edinburgh". A colorful night life with many bars and restaurants appeals to young people in particular. No wonder, "Dunedin" is a real student city.
If you spend a little more time in “Dunedin”, you should take a trip to the "Otago Peninsula" in the east. ideal to discover New Zealand's maritime wildlife. We set our journey along the direction of "Mt. Cook”. Our first stop along our way: the "Moeraki Boulders".
Believing in the legends of the New Zealand indigenous "Maori", the "Moeraki Boulders" are remains of baskets of ashtrays, gourds and sweet potatoes washed ashore by the wreckage of the legendary canoe "Arai-te-Uru". We follow the coast and turn west shortly after "Oamaru". Near "Omarama" we make a stopover at the "Clay Cliffs".
Standing in the midst of bizarre formations, it feels like you're on another planet! After a short stopover at "Lake Ohau", just a few kilometers from the tranquil town of "Twizel", we turn into one of the most beautiful dead-end lanes in the world: The almost 50 kilometer long access road to "Mount Cook Village". The next morning we use for a ramble. Even non-mountaineers get their money's worth in the region around Mount Cook: hiking trails bring tourists closer to New Zealand's most famous mountain. And if you want to strengthen yourself, it's best to go for a pizza in “The Old Mountaineers' Café”.
For us it goes on "Tekapo" in the direction of "Arthurs Pass". "Tekapo" attracts with idyllic hiking trails along the lake and a coveted photo opportunity: the "Church of the Good Shepherd", of course, we pay a visit. We continue through the typical agricultural region of "Canterbury" and make a short stop in the tranquil place "Springfield" before the last 80 kilometers to our last destination for today, the "Arthurs Pass Village". In the tranquil village there are a handful of accommodations, a small cafe and shop and probably the smallest post office in New Zealand.
If you would like to extend your journey, you will find exciting destinations on the east coast of the South Island with "Christchurch", the "Banks Peninsula" and "Kaikoura". The next morning we continue towards the west coast: From the "Arthurs Pass" to "Punakaiki", our current destination, it is about 140 kilometers. Once at the sea, we follow the "West Coast Highway", one of New Zealand's most beautiful scenic routes, to the "pancake-rocks", which owe their name to their shape: they remind us of stacked pancakes! The next morning we hike from "Punakaiki" a bit through the green vegetation to the sea, before we continue our journey. Back in the car, we follow the "Highway 6" inland and turn off in "Kohatu" in the direction of "Motueka", where we pitch our tents. Our destination is the "Abel Tasman National Park" which attracts with its unspoilt nature and many activities at least in the main season. Unfortunately, we are less fortunate with the weather but the changeable conditions and our travel time make us feel almost alone in the National Park.
Perfect for a quiet walk on the beach! The next day, with a short stopover in "Nelson", we will continue by plane to "Wellington" on the North Island Since "Nelson" is only a stone's throw away from "Motueka", we have some time before the flight for a little discovery tour. From the regional airport we will flying to the New Zealand capital in less than 30 minutes great views included! By the way, if you prefer to stay on the ground or take your car with you, you can also take the ferry from "Picton" to the North Island the journey takes just 3.5 hours. "Wellington" offers something for everyone: nature, culture, culinary and many events.
Film fans are familiar with the city for another reason: The world-famous "Lord of the Rings" and "Hobbit" films were produced here. After a walk along the waterfront, past the "Te Papa" museum, which is definitely worth a visit, we discover the charming city centre and then drive up to the Wellington Botanic Garden with the red "cable car". The great view and the beautiful way back through the botanical garden are among the highlights of each "Wellington" -Trips. After a short trip to the government district, we hike up to "Mount Victoria" and directly through some locations of the first part of the "Lord of the Rings" film Saga. After two relaxing days in "Wellington" we travel on to "Hawkes Bay".
"Napier" is a popular tourist destination even among the New Zealanders. The reason is the unique architecture in Art Deco style and the pleasant climate. You can also relax in the long and beautifully designed waterfront promenade. We continue for a few kilometers and take a short walk through "Havelock North" a small town that is used by many New Zealanders primarily as a retirement home. Accordingly, it is quiet here. We were also fascinated by the 400 meter high "Te Mata Peak".
Here you can do small hikes and enjoy the beautiful view. If you have a little more time, you can follow the coast and pay a visit to the city of Gisborne and the East Cape, but you should plan for several days. On the other hand, we continue on "Lake Taupo" to "Rotorua". The power of New Zealand's nature becomes apparent here. Sulfur odor, bubbling puddles and geysers characterize the image of the region. You can also learn a lot about the culture of the "Maori" in "Rotorua".
We first take a trip to the "Whakarewarewa Forest", where we enjoy the nature of the region surrounded by the huge redwood trees. The light rain does not bother us either. It is also worth taking a walk along Lake Rotorua here you have the chance to meet a Pukeko, the blue-colored bird species spread in New Zealand and Australia. Those who have more time can also visit the "Coromandel Peninsula" or the city "Tauranga".
We head to New Zealand's largest city, “Auckland”. But on the way there is a lot to see: Humorous buildings, numerous sheep and the lush green of the landscape. Pure New Zealand! With its 1.4 million inhabitants, "Auckland" is bursting at the seams about one third of New Zealands total population lives here! The beautiful district of "Ponsonby" with its small cafes and beautiful houses, the rebellious "K-Road" and the main shopping street "Queen Street" as well as the harbor area with countless sailing ships, we explore in a short half a day on foot. In the afternoon we escape the crowds of the city nd drive to "Devonport" - a charming suburb, which is conveniently reached by ferry in less than 15 minutes. A relaxing end to our penultimate day's travel.
You have more time? Then there is much to see north of Auckland: the tropical "Bay of Islands", the "Ninety Mile Beach" and of course the popular "Cape Reinga" at the northern tip. Our last two destinations, which we visit on our last day, are only 40 kilometers from Auckland: The beaches of "Karekare" and "Piha". The "Karekare Beach" fascinates with its dark sand and its seclusion - perfect for quiet, long walks. At the "Piha Beach" you can just relax and unwind have a coffee in the iconic "Piha Beach Store" or just unpack the surfboard.
After 14 fascinating, eventful days in New Zealand, our "Short Trip" ends. But one thing is for sure: we will be back there is so much more to discover after all.