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Melissa McArtney

New Zealand and Nepal Guide

Mel was born in Christchurch and guides for us in both New Zealand and Nepal. It takes a special character to face the challenges of leading trips in a foreign country, and Mel certainly ticked all the boxes. Before guiding for Active Adventures Mel spent plenty of time travelling and working overseas. After two years in Europe and the UK she knew it was time to come home and felt a deep sense of duty and pride to show off New Zealand! She credits her desire for adventure and travel to her family who encouraged exploration of the great outdoors from a very young age. 

Favourite hobbies? 
Getting outdoors, biking, running, swimming and sports. Exploring new places! And Cooking :-).

mel content

Testimonials

“Mel was absolutely fantastic. She was great fun to trek with, was incredibly patient with us (especially on the hard days), and knew all the special spots in the villages we stayed (bakeries, cafes, viewpoints). I was really impressed by her knowledge of Nepali and inspired by her energy level (she went on training runs most days after we finished walking!); I also really appreciated her calm leadership and how cheerfully, respectfully and patiently she worked with Bishal, our team of porters and the lodge workers. Finally, I loved seeing her play with the children and dogs we encountered on the trail--that really encouraged us to interact more and learn more from the villagers we met.”
- Ronnie Shi (West Covina, California, United States), EBC March 2018

“Mel is a true inspiration to me. Watching her interact with the group and also the locals still makes me smile. ”
- Linda Sughrue (New York, New York, United States), EBC November 2017

“Mel was great. She did a great job with the food and the big meals she made were excellent. Mel was low key and funny at the same time and it was a pleasure being in her company. She was knowledgeable about New Zealand and would often provide tid-bits of information about the geology, birds, history, etc. She also remembered little things about us individually which you would realize when she would bring you something that you didn't even asked for but she may have overheard you say something about it. For example; there was no water bottle cage on my bike and I asked her to hold my water bottle. A little while later, when we made a stop, she found a cage (I don't know where) and put it on my bike. Mel and Dani worked really hard ALL day and night to make us comfortable in every way.”
- Patty King (White Plains, New York, United States) Rimu Dec 5 2016 

Trip Reviews

  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 16016 reviews)

    Like an Inca in Peru

    This trip was better than I could've ever expected. The Inca Trail was the most incredible hardest thing I've ever done both mentally and physically and I could not have done it without our guide Zac and my new found friend Cynthia. Machu Picchu was the perfect culmination to the pilgrimage. The rest of the trip and all of my other wonderful new friends including our guide Erick will never be forgotten. I will be talking about this trip for years to come and cannot wait to go on my next Active Adventure!
    Jennifer Kenna Review Image
    – New York, United States
    Jaguar 2017, November 2016
  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 16016 reviews)

    Spectacular Time!

    We had a spectacular time in Patagonia! The venue was beautiful, challenging and exciting; Active did a great organizational job as well as Arturo our lead guide. Arturo is a multidimensional person that took great care of us at all times. Our group was very diverse, interesting spanning all age groups which got along great. Bottom line is that we had a fantastic time at a fantastic place with fantastic people. It was a very challenging trip that we are proud to have done.
    Alan Offstein Review Image
    – Pennsylvania, United States
    Condor, December 2016
  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 16016 reviews)

    Better Than I Imagined!

    Visiting Patagonia was a dream of mine, forever and this amazing trip was better than I could have possibly imagined! Everything was perfect and I can't wait to travel with Active Adventures again!
    Laura Goldner Review Image
    – New Hampshire, United States
    Condor, March 2018
  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 16016 reviews)

    Outstanding Adventure Vacation

    Our Active Adventures trip was outstanding! The entire process was a tremendous experience. Staff were responsive and friendly during the "sign up" phase. Our guides Jordie and Holly are two of the finest professional, friendly and knowledgeable guides we've had the pleasure to work with. Shout out for both of these wonderful people! They did a marvelous job managing group dynamics to ensure everyone was motivated and individual needs were met. Well trained and both have mastered the skillful art of quality customer service. Keep up the good work!
    Lilly Golden Review Image
    – Texas, United States
    Tui, July 2017
  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 16016 reviews)

    Beautiful Scenery and Great Hikes

    My husband has wanted to do this trip for several years. I hesitated as the Refugio stays were way out of my comfort zone. The whole trip was great, and even the Refugio’s were ok. Our guide Cynthia was just amazing - she knows what she’s doing, is prepared for everything, and was very encouraging. I really don’t know how she did it all! We were with a great group of people, and feel we have gained new friends that we hope to meet on another trail some day.
    Cathy Tileston Review Image
    – Florida, United States
    Condor, March 2018

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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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