Our last kayaking trip in New Zealand had a rocky start. We nearly forgot our tent, the weather forecast predicted two days of rain, our first boat started sinking, and on the morning of our departure I woke up with a bunch of red bites on my stomach. Five minutes of googling over breakfast at the campground, I was convinced I had bed bugs. How I could have acquired bedbugs 3-weeks into a 3-week camping trip (with my own sleeping bag in my own tent) did not seem relevant. Read on to hear more about kayaking in Fiordland National Park! Spoiler alert: I did not have bed bugs.
After a week on the North Island, we caught the 4 hour ferry from Wellington to Picton. We would spend the next two weeks of our trip exploring the South Island. As someone who loves bobbing on waves in a tiny kayak, I'm always surprised by how quickly I get nauseous on big ships in slightly rough seas. The weather was crappy, so we couldn't spent more than a few minutes outside in the fresh air.
That evening we stayed in a scenic, walk-in, waterside Department of Conservation (DOC) campsite, where we shared the site with one other tent (see album at the end of this post). Early the next morning we drove to the kayak rental headquarters, where we emptied our belongings across their lawn and packed for our first overnight kayaking trip in New Zealand (and Henk's first overnight trip ever!). Destination: Kenepuru Sound in Marlborough Sounds on the north coast of the South Island.
Sooooo I never mentioned it ahead of time, but Henk and I just spent a month in New Zealand!! Get ready - for those of us who have (gradually and begrudgingly) become accustomed to Dutch scenery, it may take a bit of adjusting to the crazy beautiful, varying, dramatic scenery of New Zealand. We went paddling three times, so I'm planning to share three posts with you, and I'll sneak in some of my favorite non-kayaking photos at the end of each post.
For our first destination, I present you: the Bay of Islands, in the northern tip of New Zealand (-35 deg N)...
This is a blog about exploring the outdoors (mostly by kayak), traveling, trip planning, and coastal engineering. It currently focuses on kayaking in the Netherlands and Belgium, but previous posts cover Upstate New York, California, and much more. See the Complete List of Blog Posts for a history of the site. Looking for something specific? Search the site here.
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