A Campervan round New Zealand.

Pacific Horizon campervan.

Having wanted to visit New Zealand for many years I eventually organised a three week tour in a rented campervan in late 1997.

Before going on this trip I searched the Web for information, what I found was that there were a lot of companies renting campervans in New Zealand (many with web sites), but very little independent advice. Below is my contribution (I have no connection with the companies recommended.)


Who to rent from?

I sent e-mail to six companies in New Zealand requesting information about the availability and cost of renting a campervan for a specified three weeks in late 1997, all six replied, all six were informative and friendly! The most friendly, and the one offering the best package was Pacific Horizon Travelhomes.

How long to go for?

Three weeks was the absolute minimum. Four weeks would have been far more comfortable. You could easily spend four months.

Where to start and finish?

We started at Christchurch (South Island) and finished at Auckland (North Island), this seemed to be a good choice. Because you will want to visit both islands, and because the inter-island ferry is expensive (both in time and money) you should make sure you rent from a company that lets you pick your campervan up on one island and leave it on the other.

What to see?

The best guide.Easily the best guide book we found was Lonely Planet. The single most impressive sight was Milford Sound. I suggest you budget two thirds of your time in the South Island and one third in the North.

The most memorable impression was of the friendliness of all the Kiwis we met (especially Jo-Ann, Tricia, and everyone else at Pacific Horizon).

What was it like?

Milford Sound at dayreak.

Milford Sound (South Island) at daybreak.

A sperm whale at Kaikoura.

A sperm whale at Kaikoura (South Island).

A one track bridge.

A one track bridge (very common in rural New Zealand).

Cowshed bay near Picton.

Cowshed bay near Picton (South Island).


Auckland harbour (North Island) from the ferry.

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