Go There & Back Dave & LeeAnne Travel the World in 2007

Diary of a Car Camper – New Zealand

Not ours, but I wish it was...
Not ours, but I wish it was...

We’re starting kind of a second leg of our stay here in New Zealand, the bikes are gone and we’re renting a car for the rest of the trip. Of course it’s going to give our legs a break and let us have a lot more range in terms of where we can go and what we can see in a day. But it will also help us out in other ways – when we were on bikes we could really only buy enough food to get us through the day, now we can get a cooler and buy stuff that will last us a few days.

We got really lucky on the rental. We were looking for a two week, one way rental from Christchurch to Auckland, and expecting to pay extra for the one way bit. But, it seems Christchurch has too many rentals and Auckland too few – so we’re getting a car that normally rents for 49 NZD for 19 NZD (About 14 USD), and it comes with unlimited mileage and insurance. What a bargain!

Yes, a bargain. The downside is it’s a 1996 Toyota Corolla that I can only imagine has flipped it’s odometer about a dozen times. And while it has radio and tape player, it has only one speaker – you read that right. It’s not that the other speakers don’t work. It shipped from the factory with only one speaker – who could ask for anything more? When you’re in the drivers seat and you have the system cranked you can kind of hear the tinny treble bits of the music that’s about it.

Driving is a lot easier than riding, but at the end of the day it’s actually more tiring I think. We’ve done several long days already – with more to come – and I have to say when driving you still end the day and feel like you need a nap, but you don’t have the sense of accomplishment or the endorphins you have when you complete a day of bike riding. Of well, they’re small islands, but we still need the car to see everything we want to on them.

Well be having some long days from Christchurch we’ll jump down to Milford Sound then up the West Coast of the South Island, then back over to the east where we take a ferry back to the North Island. You get the picture. Luckily the miles are included.