Dan Keys

New Zealand & Nepal Guide

Dan Keys (DK) started with Active in 2011 with a season in New Zealand before heading to Nepal to begin guiding our Himalayan adventures. He has since led dozens of treks through the Everest and Annapurna regions. Sharing the beauty of the mountains and the friendly Nepali culture is why DK returns every season. During his spare time DK works on his side project the 'Active Hearts Foundation' which is a charity he created early 2015. The mission of the charity is to build and facilitate small rural projects in Nepal prioritizing education and health outcomes, specifically for our local guides and porter's villages. You can read more and donate to the 'Active Hearts Foundation' here.

“One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.” - Henry Miller

"I'm a Kiwi with a long standing love affair with the New Zealand mountains and oceans. I began guiding in 2005 and now lead treks around New Zealand, Australia and Nepal. I enjoy exploring the world off the beaten track and really getting immersed in the local culture. A competent Spanish and Nepali speaker, I have a passion for surfing, music, trekking and seeing the world first hand. " - DK

DK profile2

Testimonials

“For sure! It wouldn't have been the trip it was without DK. He's a wonderful human being. People gravitate towards him because of his kindness, easy-going nature, good humor, and ability to make everything fun. He was an epic story teller and knew the answer to every cultural, ecological, or musical question I had. DK is one-of-a-kind and we were all incredibly fortunate that he was our guide on this trip!”
- Whitney Wells-Corfield (Montpelier, Virginia, United States), Winter Rimu June 2018

“D.K went above and beyond to make sure everyone had an incredible trip. He spent time getting to know each of us and us about him. His knowledge and love of the people and the country made a big difference in the trip as I felt I was able to touch the culture not just look at it. He is an amazing person and I consider myself very fortunate to have him as my guide”
- Anna Flynn (Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, United States), AST April 2017

“DK is top notch! I understand why he's a bit of a legend on the trail! ”
- Jamie Sulea (North Saanich, British Columbia, Canada), EBC November 2016

Trip Reviews

  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 16211 reviews)

    Amazing Honeymoon Experience

    We decided to travel around NZ with Active Adventures for our honeymoon. What an incredible decision! All the logistics were taken care of for us, so we didn't have to worry about any of it while we were focusing on planning the wedding. The staff were terrific....excellent tour guides and went above and beyond for us. New Zealand itself is such a gorgeous place and was a great place to kick off married life. Active Adventures really does it right and the group sizes (max 14) are perfect. We had an amazing experience and plan to travel with Active Adventures again on our next adventure!
    Crista Cohen Review Image
    – Colorado, United States
    Tui, January 2017
  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 16211 reviews)

    Trip of a life time

    My wife and I planned this trip with some friends to try something new and to maximize the experience of New Zealand. We spent 8 days hiking, biking, and kayaking through the South Island. Every day was action packed with something different to do. We got to try new things, test a few of our limits that we wouldn't have normally done, and learn a few things about local culture along the way. I can't say enough good things about our guides Ben and Liana. They were enthusiastic about everything we did and full of information. They helped us push limits and get the most out of the experiences we had. Everyone I've told about our trip has been wowed by the awesome things we got to see and do.
    Chris Busch Review Image
    – Pennsylvania, United States
    Tui, January 2018
  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 16211 reviews)

    Rimu - Awesome South Island trip!

    This trip is really a great way to experience the true beauty of the South Island. We hiked in beautiful areas with spectacular views, biked the Te Araroa track and sea kayaked in Milford Sound and in the Okarito Lagoon. Our guides, Ben and Emma, were absolutely great! They were cheerful, caring and attentive to our needs. They kept us well fed all along the trip even while hiking in remote areas with minimal cooking facilities. Accommodations were great and representative of the visited area. Thanks to one of our travel companions, we had magnificent weather for the trip duration… we cannot have asked for better temperatures.
    Claire Barrette-Remy Review Image
    – Ontario, Canada
    Rimu, December 2017
  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 16211 reviews)

    Joy Project; New Zealand's North Island

    The Tongariro Crossing was the highlight of my visit of the Northern Island. I felt as though we were trekking on another planet.

    Andrew and Claire shared their extensive knowledge of New Zealand’s culture, land, flora and fauna while offering great music on Dick, the bus and fabulous meals!

    I was asked about traveling to New Zealand alone. I explained I was not alone but traveling with twelve friends I had not met yet. This turned out to be factual.
    Lynn Marie
    Lynn Dulmage Review Image
    – Michigan, United States
    Kauri, August 2016
  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 16211 reviews)

    Amazing Trip

    This trip was amazing - the hikes took us to beautiful vistas, the guides were knowledgeable and fun, and the food was never in short supply ("Food is Fuel!" as one of our guides kept restating).

    Koru and Kim were great guides throughout and everyone had so much fun! I was traveling solo but 2 of the other 4 on my trip were as well, so nobody was ever left out! Having such a small group made the activities much easier to enjoy.

    The hikes, like I mentioned, were truly unbelievable, though somewhat more difficult than I expected. Everything was talked as 'full-on' or by time, but know that NZ hikes are up mountains then back down, so work on hills more than distance before you go! Even some of the small walks we did (Blue Pools, only 5 minutes from the road & the Chasm, 10 minutes from the road) were breathtaking. Kayaking the Milford Sound was another once in a lifetime experience we got to have on this trip.

    The only thing I would have liked (and got jokingly by the end of the trip) were straight communication prior to the hikes about how long they were updates mid-hike about how much longer/further. There was one day with miscommunications leading me to think the hike would be another 3+ hours uphill (nearly inducing panic) but was really only 30 more minutes.

    Overall, I really loved this trip!
    Taylor Ceithaml Review Image
    – California, United States
    Tui, November 2016

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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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