I already knew our guides were great, but I was blown away by their amazing knowledge of our quirky New Zealand history, native birds and the vast New Zealand bush. The phrase that sticks in my mind the most from the trip is the guides (Dan and Celia) saying they “made it” or “made it happen”. This covered EVERYTHING from the delicious home cooked food – whether it was made by the guides or just delivered to us by them, to the meals out, to the West Coast weather cooperating for us! Truly the ‘Rimu‘ was definitely a trip of a lifetime!
The Angelus Hut was my favourite place on the trip. My jaw dropped as we climbed the last few steps and came around the corner to a stunning vista of tussocks edging a beautiful clear blue lake surrounded by mountain peaks, to top it off our accommodation for the night was RIGHT THERE with 360 degree views!
Okarito Lagoon was a stunning spot, tucked away and easy to miss if you didn’t know it was there. A beautiful haven for so many birds, kayaking out on the lagoon was the best way to embrace the lagoon – we glided quietly past heron’s fishing for dinner and just sat there mesmerized by the beautiful lighting on the water, imagining the size of the mountains that must be just behind those clouds!
Dave was awesome when swimming with the seals in Kaikoura, he got us all kitted out for the swim and led us into a small bay, funny enough Dave kept apologising for the lack of seals swimming that day, but to us it was magical, the few that accompanied us danced around in the water, while the gorgeous little seal pubs sunbathed on the rocks just metres away.
Looking back I can’t believe how many beautiful spots we visited in just the eight days I was with the group! We spent so much time actively exploring every spot; either hiking, cycling or kayaking, yet it never felt like too much – there was still time to laze in the hot pool at Franz Josef or relax with a glass of wine and reminisce about the excellent day we just had.