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Lauren Alexander

New Zealand Guide

Lauren was born in the UK, in an area of London called Croydon. She grew up in Christchurch on the east coast of the South Island. Lauren's special talents include being 'sort of' good at making hummous, and she also knows every word to the song 'Allstar' by Smash Mouth! When she's not making hummous or singing along to Smash Mouth you'll find her playing football, surfing, tramping, painting, or doing yoga. She never stops!

What has been your greatest outdoor adventure?

I'm not sure I can choose something specific - I think just lots of fun camping and tramping with my family! One of the most memorable ones was doing the Abel Tasman Coast Track when I was little; it rained and rained the first night and we had to cross a tidal estuary that was really flooded! That was fun!

What did you do before you became a guide?

Before I became a guide I spent six months backpacking across the United States, Canada, Iceland, the UK, and some of Europe. I also spent two months working with children in a refugee camp in France. Before that I was at university.

So you have studied beyond school..... What did you study?

Yep! I did a Bachelor of Arts double majoring in Cultural Anthropology and Developmental Studies, and minoring in Pacific Studies and Education at Victoria University in Wellington.

Do you have a favourite quote?

"A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step."

Lauren 2

Testimonials

“Lauren, she’s a gem. Prepping, cooking and serving a bunch of hungry guests. Very professional and such an encouraging gal. I felt such accomplishment when I made it to the Summit on our last hike and without Lauren ‘s patience and encouragement, it wouldn’t have happened.”
- Terri Krawietz (San Antonio, Texas, United States), Tui November 2018

“Lauren is a dedicated, top-notch guide. Kind, friendly, fun, encouraging and helpful everyday in every way. AND....an incredible cook; meals were not only perfectly cooked but presented beautifully....a real surprise and treat on an adventure trip. And, she responded to the many different diet considerations, which I think is a hallmark of your prior planning as a company. ”
- Cheryl Brewster (Berkeley, California, United States), Kiwi February 2018

“ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!! She was, patient, fun, energetic, caring and had a good energy with her co-worker. She worked so hard making us amazing meals. Not only did she wake up early to prepare breakfast, but when we got back from a long day of fun activities she had to cook and clean. I was impressed!”
- Vicki Igou (Jamul, California, United States), Rimu November 2017

 

Trip Reviews

  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 5004 reviews)

    Rimu is Wonderful - A few tips if you plan to go...

    My husband and I took the Rimu trip in early November 2016 and had a really terrific time. I encourage everyone who is seriously considering the Rimu to go ahead and sign up. That being said, with all of the fun we had, I do wish we had known a few things ahead of time. I include these tips for you, the soon-to-be Rimu traveler, to make your trip more enjoyable. However, I can promise that even if you do none of these things, you will still have a marvelous time:

    1. Guys, if you opt to snorkel with the fur seals be sure to shave your mustache before you leave home. It seems obvious now, but it never occurred to my husband that the mask wouldn’t seal properly to his face with his mustache. Do yourself a favor and shave it off or spend the afternoon dealing with a leaky mask.

    2. I also wish I had known just how intense and challenging the 3-day multi-hike through Nelson Lakes would be. If you’re an office worker and occasional hiker like me, then I encourage you to take this trip but do lots of practice/fitness training in advance. Load up your pack and get on the stair-master or start climbing really steep hills. The hike is gorgeous and worth it, but I can promise you it will be a lot more enjoyable if you’re in good shape for it. Also, there are no showers at the huts and only latrines (port-a-potties) for toilets, so bring baby wipes for exactly the same reason you would use them on a baby (wink wink). And also bring hiking poles! I know it says optional on the gear list, but I really found them to be essential. As for the water bottle – leave that at home and invest in a good water bladder system (a “Camelback” or similar). We found the water bottle to be a hassle to take in and out of the bag (forcing us to stop each time), which made us want to drink less water. The water bladders allow you to keep moving and you’ll find you’re more hydrated.

    3. The sea kayaks (and, honestly, New Zealand in general) are not made for people over 6’ 2” in height (187 cm). Watch your head everywhere you go, and as for the kayaks, it may help to have the taller person sit in the front seat of the kayak instead of the back.

    4. Also, pack enough clothes for a week and then expect to do laundry. Bring some travel-sized laundry soap packets to help save money and make sure you have enough 1$ and 2$ coins for laundry before you get to the hotel (the machines are generally pretty expensive: about $3 for the washer and between $3 - $5 for 30 minutes in the dryer).

    5. Bring good cycling shorts – yes, the ones with the weird-feeling padding on the bum. It will help prevent the dreaded ‘grumpy grundle’.

    6. And finally, a heads-up to my fellow outgoing introverts (yes, we exist): this trip contains long days of social interaction (think 7:15 a.m. – 9:30 p.m.), with few breaks for introspection/solitude. If you need some down time, skip dinner or unfurl all of the emergency blankets and build your own fort at the back of the bus and hang a sign that says, “Stay Out!” (just kidding about that last one).

    A great big thank you to our guides, Rachel and Jordan, who were informative and helpful beyond measure. How they managed to remain cheerful and engaging considering they had to do all of the exertion we clients had to do, plus all of their work on top of it, is beyond me. They are the embodiment of Kiwi hospitality! We are already thinking of coming back for a North Island tour sometime soon.
    Lauren Gerth Review Image
    – Missouri, United States
    Rimu, November 2016
  •   4.49 out of 5 (from 305 reviews)

    Weka - New Zealand

    Wow!! What a trip! This hiking & biking tour was breath-taking both figuratively and literally. Our guides made our adventure challenging, yet fun. They were knowledgeable, encouraging and you could tell they are truly passionate about what they do. This tour captured all the great highlights of New Zealand staying just off the beaten path so we could really experience the diverse beauty and savory tastes of the island. Our group enjoyed ourselves so much we are already discussing another Active Adventure trip in 2019. Thank you Active Adventures for a wonderful experience!
    Sue Stohrer Review Image
    – California, United States
    Weka, March 2018
  •   4.39 out of 5 (from 1228 reviews)

    5 day Kauri Trip

    Tongariro Alpine Crossing was the best hike of my life!
    Grace Zheng Review Image
    – Hawaii, United States
    Kauri, January 2017
  •   4.60 out of 5 (from 1902 reviews)

    Unbelievable weather!

    Our guides really made the trip! Katie and Eve were fantastic, and the South Island was so beautiful. I can't recommend the Tui trip enough.
    Katrina Linder Review Image
    – Pennsylvania, United States
    Tui, November 2017
  •   4.60 out of 5 (from 1902 reviews)

    Graduation gift of a lifetime

    As a recent college graduate, the one thing I wanted to do was travel. I was completely unfamiliar with New Zealand, and my parents wanted to ensure I was safe and could know where I was going each day. Active Adventures was a great way to have the time of my life while being safe. Our group ranged in activity levels, but Andy and Jo made sure we all were comfortable while encouraging us every step of the way. From my initial call with the Active team, to booking, and eventually the trip, I did not have a single problem and had the experience of a lifetime! Thanks Mom and Dad, and thank you Active Adventures!
    Sara Elwell Review Image
    – Pennsylvania, United States
    Tui, February 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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