A Campervan Around New Zealand
Prior to this trip, I had never slept in a car or any other vehicle for an extended period of time, barring a quick nap during road trips here and there. With this in mind, I was a little worried about the idea of spending so much time in a camper in New Zealand. Howbeit, the flexibility was too good to pass up so I reserved a Campervan from Jucy Rentals. Surprisingly, the Campervan was quite comfortable. The first night the temperature dropped down to a cold 32F (0C). I definitely woke up cold a few times, but quickly found warmth under the covers and fell back asleep. The temperature on the rest of the trip hovered around 40-50F (4-10C), which made it very comfortable in the Campervan. The bed was the size of a full sized bed, and it took us about five minutes to setup everynight. We had a general route planned for our road trip around the South Island, but didn't have set places to stay. This sounds pretty unnerving, but we downloaded an app called CamperMate on our phone, which revealed the many campgrounds or "Holiday Parks" around the island. These Holiday Parks had kitchens, restrooms and showers, laundry, and lounges. We didn't make any reservations at the Holiday Parks, and simply drove up and asked for a spot, which ranged from $14-20 USD. Though, we traveled in mid-November, which can be considered shoulder season so I imagine that spots would fill up fast in the NZ summer months. Below is a sample of the app and the many Holiday Parks around the South Island. If you didn't feel like reading; in summary be flexible, rent a camper, download CamperMate.
The General Route (Click for Google Link)
Gem Alpaca Farm
Glow Worm Dell
This place was pretty cool, especially because it was free and you could actually take photos. They don't typically allow you to take photos if you go on any of the guided cave tours, which makes sense because people try to use flash to capture these little critters, which isn't the best for them. The only downside to this place is it's pretty far north, but I think it's definitely worth the stop, especially if you're going to the Fox Glacier.