How is it fair that we wait our whole lives to retire, only to be…
The world is finally opening back up, but actually, why would you go anywhere else when New Zealand is an amazing place to explore during the winter months!
From the snow capped mountains of the South Island, to the winterless north, there’s so much to offer for a weekend or more. So check out our top picks of places to enjoy a winter holiday this year!
Setting yourself up in a fancy hotel for a few nights in the middle of one of our biggest cities is a sure fire way to beat the winter blues. Treating ourselves to that kind of luxury is not something we do all that often, so why not make a long weekend of it? You might be able to attend a few shows, wander an art gallery, and indulge in some delicious food.
Surrounded by snow
Of course we’re lucky enough in New Zealand to have a couple of prime winter locations where you can check out the snow up close. The Southern Alps always put on a spectacular performance during the colder months of the year and the picturesque towns of Arrowtown and Cromwell are a delightful destination.
With more than 15,000km of coastline, you’re sure to find one or two beaches to enjoy.
You could head north and explore the Bay of Islands at a time when there aren’t too many visitors to get in your way. And it’s also a region of New Zealand which escapes that real winter chill.
Or head west to a more windswept location, where you could get beachfront accommodation and simply take pleasure in the view from indoors. There’s nothing quite like a roaring fire, a good book and the rain lashing the windows to make you feel cosy and comforted.
Just because it’s winter, it doesn’t mean the outdoors is off limits. The geothermal highway that stretches from the Bay of Plenty down to the Central Plateau is an exciting trail of bubbling mud and gushing geysers, and it almost feels like you’re transported back into
prehistoric times. Learn about the buried village after the explosion of Mt Tarawera, soak in hot pools set in the bush at the world-class Secret Spot just outside Rotorua and stop off at Te Puia, Waimangu Valley and Orakei Korako on your way to Taupo – where Craters of the Moon is another must-see.
While New Zealand may not have a long history of habitation, it doesn’t mean we don’t have a rich cultural background. From Te Papa in Wellington, to the Auckland Museum and the Tamaki Maori Village in Rotorua, there’s plenty of historical highlights to captivate your senses.
Hitch a ride on the rail trail
There are a number of locations across the country that offer some exciting trips on the railway line. You can take a guided rail cart tour on the Forgotten Highway, jump aboard the Coastal Pacific and link up with the TranzAlpine, or enjoy a day out on the Awakeri Rail Adventure – where you self drive your buggies!
Wine & dine
Hawkes Bay, Marlborough, the Wairarapa, Central Otago – we certainly have no shortage of world-class viticulture on our front doorstep. So perhaps this winter is the ideal time to book yourself a couple of winery tours to delight in tastings and learn more about the wine production process.
The AirBnB website offers an incredible opportunity to find somewhere truly unique and special to stay right around New Zealand. Simply type in the dates for your getaway, and then choose from the various tabs across the top of the results – from yurts to treehouses, farm getaways, tiny homes, domes, houseboats and more, there are all kinds of incredible accommodation options available at your fingertips.
Well, what do you think? We hope some of the above ideas have inspired you to explore your own backyard, where you don’t have to worry about passports or tiresome international air travel, and can enjoy travelling at your own pace.
If you are considering a lifestyle change or retirement, we would love to get in touch.