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Maddi Keurntjes

New Zealand Guide

We have another Australian in our midst! Maddi was born and raised in the outer eastern suburbs of Melbourne, Australia. The city that likes to claim every title... most liveable city, sporting capital and best coffee to just name a few (her claim, not ours!) But unfortunately it does not claim adventure capital of the world, so that is why you will find her here in Queenstown

What has been your greatest outdoor adventure?
My greatest outdoor adventure was spending 28 days backpacking in the Nelson Lakes National Park and travelling off-trail for multiple days at a time, being far, far away from any civilisation, visiting tremendous alpine lakes that very few people have witnessed before. Being completely disconnected from the outside world (with no mobile phones or showers), I truly gained a connection with nature that I will treasure forever.

What are your hobbies?
If I had to only pick a few hobbies, I would have to say: snowboarding, hiking, camping and travelling the world. Although, anything that gets the blood pumping and being outside is a hobby of mine!

Do you have a favourite quote?
"Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wilderness is a necessity" John Muir.

Describe a life experience that has shaped you today?
Once I finished studying at University I decided to experience a Canadian winter in the Rocky Mountains. My original plan was to stay for 3-6 months, but I ended up staying for nearly 2 years once I realised my strong love for the mountains. It was then when I became fully aware that my true passion is to be adventuring in the great outdoors. Ever since then I have been chasing the mountain lifestyle.

Have you studied beyond school? If so in what?
Once completing high school, I continued my study and graduated as a Myotherapist (Remedial Massage) at RMIT University in Melbourne. I enjoyed the short years of practising as a Myotherapist, decreasing client's pain and improving functional movement. But now it's time for me to get serious about playing in the great outdoors!

Maddi Keurntjes


“Maddi was fabulous. Our meals were all delicious and she went out of her way to find local delicacies when we expressed an interest in trying them. She listened to our preferences, for example, my husband loves banana bread. She made banana bread french toast on our last morning. Little acts of consideration like this were quite typical of Maddi. I found Maddi to be very no-nonsense in a gentle and patient way when she helped me on our bike ride and she helped me become a better hiker. She and Liana took turns being with me as I was slower than the others and their support and knowledge made the trip more enjoyable for me.”
- Sherrilee Rothwell (Red Lake, Ontario, Canada), Kauri October 2018

“Again... as with Jacki... I cannot say enough positive comments about Maddi. She was great... entertaining... and, just a great person to be around. She made great meals - and - was full of positive energy.”
- Greg Deffenbaugh (Denver, Colorado, United States), Kauri July 2018

“It WAS a most awesome trip and Maddi was an important part of it. It didn't take long to find out that Maddi knew how to prepare a great meal. I was impressed when she went over my participant info at the outset, noting my health issues and inquiring about my likes and dislikes. From day two on she always had a cold Coke waiting for me and it was very much appreciated. She was good to check up on me along the way, making sure I didn't leave something behind and encouraging me in my physical endeavors.”
- Steve Ashby (Memphis, Tennessee, United States), Rimu December 2017


Trip Reviews

  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 16016 reviews)

    See the best of Patagonia and eat like a king!

    Great itinerary to see Chilean and Argentine Patagonia! While many people come to hike Torres del Paine, which is awesome, I thought Mount Fit Roy and Cerro Torre were even more spectacular in Argentina! Wished we could have hiked to more places in Argentina. Also loved the food and the ability to choose your own meals! I ate like a king!
    Patrick Nguyen Review Image
    – Colorado, United States
    Condor, February 2017
  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 16016 reviews)

    New Zealand and Kiwis are the Best!

    It would be difficult to overstate how impressed I was with our Active Adventure tour. Mel and Claire were absolutely incredible!! Steve was great too, but he was only with us for the hike up and back from the Aspiring Hut. Plus, he was weighed down by a rock he so generously carried up the hill for Mel.
    Anyway, Mel and Claire made Active Adventures (and New Zealand) look so good! They were EVERYTHING I could hope for: friendly, funny, knowledgeable, professional, hard-working, kind, easy-going, energetic, .... Thank you for one of the best 2-week periods of my entire life!
    Mike Schimpf Review Image
    – California, United States
    Kea, January 2017
  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 16016 reviews)

    Worth every penny!

    As someone who mostly travels independently, the thought of signing up for a two week organized group trip was rather intimidating but after reading all the reviews for Active, I thought I would give it a try... and I am so glad I did! Active Adventures made everything flow effortlessly- from the second I signed up until we were dropped of at the airport. The itinerary for the Condor trip is phenomenal, covering lots of different areas of Southern Patagonia and highlighting the most beautiful places. The W trek was one of the highlights of the trip and was even more enjoyable thanks to our guide, Cem, who was a wealth of knowledge about the flora and fauna and brought such a fun energy to the group. Additionally, our tour leader, Zac, had such a positive spirit, strong sense of humor and passion for his work that showed during our two weeks getting to know him. He was so well organized and made sure everything was lined up so we could relax and enjoy our downtime- including nailing a birthday dinner and cake! Would highly recommend this trip and organization to anyone in the future!
    Laura Postles Review Image
    – Pennsylvania, United States
    Condor, December 2017
  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 16016 reviews)

    Fantastic trip

    This was my first hiking trip, and I must say it was fantastic!!! Patagonia is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been (and I travel a lot). I want to mention that you have to be in reasonably good physical condition to enjoy this trip. I am glad that I trained for it. Arturo, our tour guide and Catherine (the W Trail guide) were excellent. They also made sure that they accommodated my dietary requirements (gluten, diary, and soy free) on the W Trail, which is not an easy task. I enjoyed every moment of the trip. I will definitely book another trip with Active Adventures, now that I know how much I enjoy hiking and active trips.
    Simona Walsh Review Image
    – Pennsylvania, United States
    Condor, August 2017
  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 16016 reviews)

    Challenging and Fun!

    My trip to Argentina and Chile was more than I imagined it would be. I was in awe of the natural beauty of the areas we hiked in. However, the most important thing I take home with me is the personal relationships I formed with my group, especially my leader, and now friend, Mayra Callo. She was amazing. I am a "beginner hiker" so her patience and close attention on the harder treks was appreciated! She knew so much about the area and it was a pleasure learning about South America from her. In addition, her personality made all of us feel like family, with Mayra being the Mother :) She took great care of all of us. We all had so much fun was sad to leave. Anyone who has any reservations about booking a trip should just do it! They won't be disappointed!!
    Tina Avallone Review Image
    – New Jersey, United States
    Condor, March 2018



Why travel with Active Adventures?

Above all, we aim to be amazing hosts. We're proud of our kiwi roots, and our professional, warm and relaxed style of running trips around the world is unforgettable.

We're VERY picky about who we select to work in our team, and we have people from all over the world lining up to guide our trips. So we get to hire the absolute BEST in the business.

As soon as you get off the plane, we've got all the details of your vacation covered – top notch meals, comfortable transport & accommodation, amazing guides and INCREDIBLE service.

Whether you’re new to adventure travel, or you’ve never travelled in a group before, you’ll find yourself arriving home positively different from when you left.

With our small groups (no more than 14), you'll get to know our team, your fellow travellers, and have the flexibility and freedom to do as much (or as little!) as you like.

It's all about getting there under your own steam – on foot, in a sea kayak, or by bike. What better way is there to experience mind blowing scenery? If it's your first time, no worries – our expert guides have got you covered.

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