New Zealand Travel Blog

 

Welcome to our New Zealand Travel Blog DownsideUP

This blog is dedicated to inform and inspire you on all things to do with New Zealand and Australia. Actually we write posts on anything that’s of interest in the South Pacific (our home) DownsideUP was started in 2008, so there is plenty of interesting content to inspire you to visit us Down Under.  

New Zealand Wine Regions
Suzie
By
Suzie Thorp
Love delicious, high-quality wine? Down under in New Zealand, so do we – and kiwi wine is known to be some of the best in the world! From the lightest of whites to the richest of reds, New Zealand’s mild climate, contrasting, fertile landscapes and innovative spirit create delicious vintages every single year. Read On and Learn More...
Suzie
By
Suzie Thorp

Ashley & Jordi Dive the Poor Knights
Stephanie Kellenberger
By
Stephanie Kellenberger

We are Ashley & Jordi, Canadian & Dutch Tourism Management students in Amsterdam. As part of our studies we needed to complete a five month internship which we chose to do at First Light Travel in New Zealand. During our time there we were able to explore much of the beautiful country and one of our most unforgettable experiences was to dive the Knights Islands. A protected nature reserve with a rich Maori history, these uninhabited islands off the East coast of New Zealand’s North Island have now been labeled ‘tapu’ or sacred.

Stephanie Kellenberger
By
Stephanie Kellenberger

Rosa and Juuso Hike the Tongariro Northern Circuit
Rosa
By
Rosa Repo

We are Rosa and Juuso, Tourism Management students from Finland. As a part of our studies we need to complete five months of internship, and we decided to do that at First Light Travel in New Zealand.  During our stay we have explored the country, and one of our trips was to take 3-days and Hike the Tongariro Northern Circuit in the beautiful Tongariro National Park. For us it was something very special as we don’t have anything like that in Finland.

Rosa
By
Rosa Repo

Best New Zealand Day Hikes – North Island
Brent Narbey
By
Brent Narbey

Best New Zealand Day Hikes – North Island

What first comes to mind when you think of New Zealand? Our soaring Southern Alps? Windswept coastlines? Glistening lakes? Our country was made to be explored on foot – it’s the only way to experience the full extent of NZ’s striking wilderness. To show you how to incorporate a little hiking into your New Zealand itinerary, we’ve put together a couple of posts about our favorite day hikes. Here’s the Best New Zealand Day Hikes - The North Island installment.   

Brent Narbey
By
Brent Narbey

Best Small group tours of North Island New Zealand
Steve Taylor
By
Steve Taylor

For most, travelling ‘down-under’ is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity – and that is why it is so important to get it right the first time. On a small group tour is one of our most popular holiday options; a Kiwi expert will do all the hard yards for you. Visit world-famous destinations as well as New Zealand’s best-kept secrets and share stories of the country’s compelling past while you only have one job… to enjoy our beautiful country! We’ve put together some of the Best Small group tours of North Island New Zealand – see what you think.

Steve Taylor
By
Steve Taylor

Interns Enjoying New Zealand
Stephanie Kellenberger
By
Stephanie Kellenberger

We are Stephanie and Martina, tourism students from Germany and Switzerland, who were lucky enough to have the opportunity to live and work in Auckland for a few months. We love to travel and explore so were on the road every other weekend exploring the rest of New Zealand. The circumstances for this little trip could not have been better: the weather forecast was amazing and thanks to Queens Birthday it was a long weekend.  In order to explore the Central North Island we left Auckland after work on Friday, arriving in Taupo around 11pm.

Stephanie Kellenberger
By
Stephanie Kellenberger

Oh what to do in the Bay of Islands?
Sofie
By
Sofie

Anne and Sophie get out of Auckland for a long weekend and explore tropical Northland and the Bay of Islands. With adventure on their minds they intend to make the most of the three day break and are looking for fun! Oh What to do in the Bay of Islands? Hiking, Sailing and Diving and thats just the beginning....    

 

Sofie
By
Sofie

Get off the Beaten Track in Fiordland New Zealand
Brent Narbey
By
Brent Narbey

Fiordland New Zealand is probably one of our favourite regions in New Zealand, and it’s not hard to know why. Huge waterfalls, massive peaks, glass-like fiords and fascinating wildlife – it’s one of New Zealand’s crown jewels, and paradise for those that love the outdoors. To truly appreciate the drama of this place, we recommend taking a side step away from the more touristy places. Here are five ways to get off the beaten track in Fiordland New Zealand.

Brent Narbey
By
Brent Narbey

Fiordland National Park
Kirst Thorp
By
Kirsten Thorp
Famous world-­over for its untouched natural environment, it’s no surprise 10 out of 14 New Zealand national parks are found in the South Island. This is kiwi wilderness at its best; we’ve been obsessed with the hiking trails, lakes, mountains and beaches of the New Zealand National Parks – South Island for as long as we can remember. Below, we review what we think are their finest features – warning – after reading this, you may want to explore all of them.
Kirst Thorp
By
Kirsten Thorp

Te Urewera National Park
Suzie
By
Suzie Thorp

With over 18,000 square miles of diverse natural wonderland protected in our national parks, New Zealand’s best-­kept secrets are well taken care of for all to enjoy. Wondering which ones to visit on your New Zealand self drive vacation? Here’s an overview of each of New Zealand National Parks – North Island to help you decide which ones appeal the most.

Suzie
By
Suzie Thorp

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