Drive from one postcard into the other, New Zealand is simply breath taking. Clean air, incredibly rugged but very easily accessible nature, many outdoor sports and activities including the New Zealand invented Bungy Jumping. The country is 29 times smaller than Australia which almost makes it easy to travel through with a rental campervan, motorhome, car or motorcycle in a period ranging from a few weeks to a few months. There is something for everyone!
Everything is a short distance from each other: white sandy beaches, rugged cliffs, deep fjords, high mountains (ski areas!), Vast meadows with literally millions of sheep, active volcanoes and bubbling hot mud pools. In New Zealand’s beautiful west coast you can even find glaciers that extend all the way into the subtropical rain forests. The residents of this enviable country are extremely friendly and helpful. Are you planning a trip to Australia? Then it is highly advisable to combine this with a trip of at least a few weeks to the impressive New Zealand for a complete Down Under experience!
A campervan is perhaps the most comfortable way to really experience New Zealand. Spend the night at the most beautiful nature campsites of the Department of Conservation with views that even the most expensive hotels do not have or find a luxurious holiday park to enjoy a wide range of facilities. Always with the same bed, kitchen, sitting area and, if desired, a toilet and / or shower. A motorhome is the ideal road trip vehicle. Park along the way, with the best views, for a delicious lunch. Or just grab a sunset dinner on the beach before you check in on a campground.
But in addition to this luxury, a camper also gives you freedom and flexibility. You determine your route, overnight stays and how much time you spend on each one. Some spots only make you see the beauty when you see it for yourself. In those cases you just stay a bit longer. But when the weather is bad, something that regularly occurs on the South Island, you can easily adjust your route to fully enjoy your motorhome trip through New Zealand. Traveling by campervan makes you experience freedom that truly fits New Zealand.
Are you still not completely convinced about renting a campervan in New Zealand? A number of advantages of traveling by camper;
Have we convinced you yet? Not every camper model is the same, there is a lot to choose. That is why we are happy to help you find the perfect vehicle for your trip. The benefits of TotallyCampers are;
Although this practical information for traveling to New Zealand is very basic, we think it is important to mention a few points that are important when traveling to and in New Zealand. Make sure you have read this as a minimum to avoid unexpected surprises at the airport or during your trip.
A visa is compulsory for anyone traveling to New Zealand. Fortunately, this is not a difficult procedure for most travellers if the journey does not last longer than three months. Then you will receive the Visa Waiver Visitor Visa at the airport. This is however dependable on nationality. If you want to stay in New Zealand for more than three consecutive months, you must apply for a Visitor Visa.
Although there is a good chance that you will miss the toll roads completely, we still want to inform you on them. There are three toll roads, all on the North Island. New Zealand uses an electronic toll system, which does not require braking, stopping and paying at a gate. Payment is made via the internet afterwards. You are responsible for this yourself. So don’t forget to do this after using a toll road. More information can be found on the official website.
New Zealand has several campground types where you can spend the night with a camper. Wild camping is not permitted. Spending the night is only allowed in designated areas. Of which Freedom campgrounds come closest to wild camping. To go freedom camping your campervan must meet a number of requirements. You must have your own toilet on board for example. The campervans that meet these requirements are of course clearly indicated in our campervan overview.
In the event that you are self contained you can use freedom campsites. These are designated places where camping is allowed. You can find these places via Rankers.co.nz, for example. But the luxury Holiday Parks and DOC Campgrounds are also listed here. The latter are highly recommended; on these campgrounds you are often surrounded by nature, at the start of the hiking trails with the best views on mountains, bays and beaches.
Although New Zealand is much smaller than Australia, it is still a large country to travel through. Distances are therefore very different, especially if you want to see a large part of both islands in a limited time. Try not to jam too many kilometres in too few days and always arrange a few days off so that you can be more flexible with your route, considering weather forecasts. The table below gives an impression of the distances between some of the most popular destinations on the North and South Island.
If you would like to be informed about the traffic rules in New Zealand, we would like to refer you to the official website of the New Zealand Transport Agency. Specifically to the way of giving priority.
Distance Chart New Zealand: North Island
Distance Chart New Zealand: South Island