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Thread: Campervan travel Auckland to Christchurch

  1. #1
    Werner is offline Junior Member
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    May 2008
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    Default Campervan travel Auckland to Christchurch

    Good day everyone! My husband and I with 3 kids (ages 16,14 and 12) will be in NZ in Sept. We have companies in both Auckland and Christchurch who are interested in interviewing my husband. So we decided to drive through from Auckland to Christchurch. Can anyone give us some ideas? We are not sure whether we should hire a campervan? Buy a cheap second hand campervan (we do intend to do lots of camping when we can!)? Please also give suggestions of places to see, routes to follow, campsites to stay over, places to eat etc. Is it safe to just stop off on the side of the road (if we are not breaking any traffic rules) and sleep there for the night? How good are the roads? Any special rules when it comes to hiring or buying a campervan?

  2. #2
    Cliff's Avatar
    Cliff is offline Oh Masterful One
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    We are not sure whether we should hire a campervan?
    Hire is maybe you best option. Especially true if you are coming in the next few months (Winter) and the prices are cheaper.

    Buy a cheap second hand campervan (we do intend to do lots of camping when we can!)? Please also give suggestions of places to see, routes to follow, campsites to stay over, places to eat etc.
    Just follow state highway 1 from Auckland to Wellington and you will see a lot of the country. Petrol is now $@NZD a litre.
    There Is it safe to just stop off on the side of the road (if we are not breaking any traffic rules) and sleep there for the night?
    No It is ok.
    How good are the roads?
    The main roans are good and you will not have any problems.
    Any special rules when it comes to hiring or buying a campervan? Just shop around there are many suppliers.

    One issue is crossing the ferry from Wellington to Picton to get to the south island. Some of teh major suppliers will allow you o leave the unit at one end and pick another up on the other end saving the cost of the ferry for a vehicle. Once out of Auckland the drivers on the will be a lot better and more courteous.

    Sometimes you may also find a better deal from South to North instead of North to South so you might ask about that option.
    Cheers

    Cliff

    Nelson, New Zealand
    NZ Citizenship in 2000, been in NZ 15 years now
    Arrived NZ in 1997 from Las Vegas, Nevada, USA

    "New Zealand isn't just a physical place it is a state of mind."

  3. #3
    kokopeli is offline God like figure
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    Hi Werner,

    This old thread might give you some ideas

    Route planning

    The ferry between Wellington and Picton costs about $300 for a mid-sized campervan. You can get a cheaper deal if you book online. And an even cheaper deal ifyou join the New Zealand Motor Caravan Association - New Zealand Motor Caravan Association Inc. NZMCA membership also qualifies you for discounts at various camp sites and holiday parks.

    Unfortunately, roadside camping (freedom camping) isn't allowed in certain parts of NZ unless your campervan has a Self Containment Certificate stating that it can last for two or three days without having to dump waste water or rubbish. Some of the hire companies have had their vans certified, but not all of them.

    Even more unfortunately, you're not allowed to freedom camp in other parts of NZ at all. Some regional and local councils don't like it, so they have banned it. Other areas are environmentally sensitive, so it makes sense. The NZMCA publishes a travel guide for members that explain all the restrictions.

    Fortunately, there are heaps of rest places and DOC sites where you are allowed to camp overnight. Facilities range from non-existant or pretty basic to decent toilets and shower blocks, although these ones usually have an honesty box and charge a small fee (less than $10 a night). You're also allowed to take advantage of the 'Queen's Chain' which is an ancient law that allows you to camp within 50 metres of Crown-owned rivers and streams. I'm sure you'll find some official guff about that if you search on Google NZ.......

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