For the thrill seekers
How about rolling down a hill in a transparent cushioned ball filled with water? You will travel downhill at speeds up to 50 kilometers per hour! Game for it? This revolutionary adventure activity is called Zorbing!
Or if speed thrills call on you then Jet Boating is a must do – take a ride of your life in an adrenalin-pumping jetboat while enjoying the stunningly beautiful scenery.Experience the thrill and excitement in the rivers and lakes of South Island.
For the ultimate adrenaline pumping moment – bungee at the world famous AJ Hackett site.
Skydive from 12000ft: It takes a certain kind of person to jump from an aircraft into thin air. It takes courage. Harnessed to an experienced jumpmaster, expect sensory overload as you step out that aircraft door and for some 60 seconds plummet towards the ground @200kph. Game?
New Zealand’s most breathtaking road journey is State Highway 94 in Fjordland on the remote southwest side of the South Island. The route winds through towering mountains and steep valleys of dense native forest. At the road’s end the valley opens into the deep, narrow fiord of Milford Sound and one of the world’s great views, with Mitre Peak rising majestically from the water. It’s popular, but no matter: board a boat to explore the passage that leads 10 miles to the open sea. Seals and penguins can be spotted and bottle-nose dolphins will sometimes bow-ride the passenger boats.
From the lovely bay side town of Whakatane, explore White Island, a spectacular active volcano that you should head out to. Head out on an ocean adventure to find dolphins and explore the bays of Whale Island (Moutohora) – a wildlife sanctuary 7 km off the coast. The island is home to some of NZ’s most endangered species including the iconic kiwi, saddle back birds, blue penguins and the native tuatara.
For the wildlife enthusiasts:
Common Dolphins – We frequently encounter large pods (up to well over a thousand) of these powerful, quick swimmers. Beautiful colorations and highly photogenic!
- Bottlenose Dolphins – With their permanent grin, the most recognised and likeable of all dolphins. We tend to see them in smaller pods of around 30.
- Sea Birds – Gannets, shearwaters, pied shags, spotted shags, giant petrels, the albatross and the adorable little blue penguin.
- NZ Falcon – Only 4000 pairs of falcon are left in the country – fierce and fearless, they live on live prey and dive on humans if you go near their nest.
- Sharks – We occasionally encounter hammerhead, bronze whaler and mako sharks – usually spotted by their fins gliding silently through the water. Shy creatures that don’t hang about for long.
- Little Blue Penguins – The world’s smallest penguin, they grow to about 40 cm tall and weigh a little over 1 kg. They feed at sea during the day and come ashore at dusk to their burrows on Whale Island
Fly over the Aoraki Mount Cook National Park and walk on a glacier on this a unforgettable ski plane flight!
Share in the most breathtaking adventure of a lifetime. Enter the world of one of nature’s most magnificent mammals – the giant sperm whale.
Stay in a farmhouse
Off the regular tourist trails, get a first hand feel of the real ‘New Zealand’ by opting to stay in a farmhouse. (You may get to enjoy home-cooked meals, and you will have the chance to join in with whatever is happening on the farm. Depending on the type of farm and the season, you could experience milking, shearing, lambing or harvesting kiwifruit and other crops).
Images courtesy: The Wanderers; New Zealand Tourism
By Meenakshi Shankar
About Meenakshi Shankar, a passionate writer who loves to explore new cultures and sample exotic cuisines – Wandering comes naturally to her!