Miriam Houliston

Active Adventures Travel Specialist

Miriam, or 'Miri' as she likes to be called is a Kiwi gal and has experienced the broad spectrum of life in New Zealand, from time living in the Chatham Islands to a stint in the capital city, Wellington, to the southern 'Scarfy' town of Dunedin, where she completed her bachelor of Physical Education. After studying she moved inland to Queenstown and guided on the Routeburn Track for three seasons, before relocating across the ditch to Australia with her now hubby, Mark. Miri and Mark spent five years in Australia saving money for travel and a house back home. In between coaching others on their gym technique, running gym classes, health promotions and sports events Miri trained for triathlons and kept fit ready to tackle the trail running races back in New Zealand. Now that she's back home in Queenstown, the adventure capital of world and the Active HQ, she plans to compete in a few races, so watch this space! 

Miri is not just a New Zealand expert, she's also spent a fair chunk of time travelling in Nepal as well as in Central and South America - perfect really, considering where we run our trips! Her travel highlights include all the hikes as well as a stint working in a Wildlife Park in Bolivia. Whether it's hiking or running on backcountry trails, mountain biking Queenstown's burgeoning single tracks or rafting and kayaking the local rivers, Miri loves it all and is keen to swap adventure tales!  

Miriam and partner at Machu Picchu

Favourite quote: 
“Sing like no one's listening, love like you've never been hurt, dance like nobody's watching, and live like its heaven on earth.”

Trip Reviews

  •   4.60 out of 5 (from 1936 reviews)

    Exceeding expectations and more!

    We had been planning this trip for about a year and I had been dreaming about this trip for about 7 years, therefore the expectations were high. Active Adventures did an excellent job and our guides Kuru and Liana made this a trip of a lifetime. The most amazing part is that they always were one step ahead of planning the next meal, hike, bike or even maneuvering around the NZ wild weather. All the planning ahead and adjusting on the fly would normally turn a trip to be very stressful but we were able to sit back and relax (not literally because it was very active) and truly enjoy the beautiful landscape and everything NZ had to offer. Truly the trip of a lifetime!
    Ryan Hussey Review Image
    – New Hampshire, United States
    Tui, December 2016
  •   4.39 out of 5 (from 1251 reviews)

    Very Glad We Added Kauri to Our Trip

    We added Kauri to our Rimu trip because we wanted to spend more time with the Maori culture and see the north island. Our wishes were more than fulfilled by this excellent trip.
    Rick Lent Review Image
    – Massachusetts, United States
    Kauri, December 2017
  •   4.48 out of 5 (from 297 reviews)

    Wonderful Adventure around the South Island

    We do a lot of travelling and this was one of the best trips we have ever done. the guides - Elder and Nick - are top notch. Their attention to detail, sense of humour and advanced cooking skills made the trip. The weather made it a bit of a challenge, particularly on the west (wet) coast, but they kept our spirits up and all of us safe and sound. I highly recommend this trip to anyone who wishes to see and experience the most of what the South Island has to offer. In slightly less than 2 weeks. If you are mentally prepared for some coolish, wet weather, so much the better. This was an active trip, with many options for additional cycling and hiking, which we took advantage of - which made it all the better. Fitness helped a lot. A must do.
    Murray Beare Review Image
    – Ontario, Canada
    Weka 13-day, February 2017
  •   4.77 out of 5 (from 119 reviews)

    Lean Review

    What an incredible trip! The itinerary has the perfect balance of activities to keep the trekking exciting but not too exhausting, and provides flexibility in the case of unexpected changes that may come up. The food was one of the highlights of the trip; there is nothing quite like setting up a picnic on the side of a mountain full of cheeses, meats, and other delightful treats. But what truly made this an exceptional adventure were our guides Phil, Andy, Jean Marc, and Jean Marie. Their energy, enthusiasm, and flawless teamwork provided the signature of an ACTIVE Adventure, and continues to make these trips stand miles apart from any other travel company. Though we started as 10 individuals, we quickly became 1 family. Thank you for another unforgettable journey; we look forward to the next one!
    Georgina Lean Review Image
    – California, United States
    Tour du Mont Blanc, July 2016
  •   4.60 out of 5 (from 1936 reviews)

    Perfect amount of adventure

    From gazing upon Franz Josef Glacier to biking along Hawea Lake Trail, to gliding on calm waters in Milford Sound, it's been a most memorable adventure! Our guides Tess and Amanda were a great duo! I loved that it was just enough activity without being sore while still being able to see so much of South Island.
    Grace Zheng Review Image
    – Hawaii, United States
    Tui, January 2017

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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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