Cycling in New Zealand

Soon after arriving in New Zealand, we bought a pair of used bikes for $50. It turned out to be an excellent deal, and we rode those bikes all over the country. Over six months, we did a lot of cycling in New Zealand. We cycled for exercise and to get around, from marinas and campsites. The bikes made life in New Zealand easier and better.

redwood forest, biking in New Zealand, Taupo
Our bikes on a bike path through a redwood forest in Taupo

Why walk when you can pedal, am I right? Nothing against walking, and the hiking in New Zealand is stellar, but you can cover so much more ground by bike. We love seeing the world from our bicycle seats: you get closer than a car, while much faster than walking. Still, we had to make some adjustments to cycling in New Zealand.

Getting Used to Cycling in New Zealand

We bought our bikes very soon after arriving in New Zealand, which helped get me used to using the other side of the road. After a few weeks of cycling in New Zealand, I was ready to drive on the left in the campervan. Overall, I found drivers in New Zealand pretty good with cyclists; I think they’re more aggressive towards pedestrians. We followed the rules and wore our helmets, stayed in bike lanes when possible, and everything went well for us.

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Hiking in New Zealand

They call it “tramping” here, but whatever you call it, hiking in New Zealand is a way of life. If you like to hike, New Zealand is paradise. It’s one of the best places we’ve been for hiking. Everywhere we visited on both North and South islands had nice hiking trails, thousands of them.

New Zealand Is a Hiking Paradise

One of our favorite ways to see a new place is by hiking. Especially after days on the boat, it’s a great way to stretch your legs and get fresh air. Sometimes you get to commune with local wildlife and people too!

hiking trail Greymouth South Island
An inviting trail in Greymouth, South Island

Some of our favorite places for hiking are The Marquesas and Curaçao, thanks to a variety of beautiful trails. New Zealand hiking is even better for variety and quality. The sheer number of well laid out trails means you can pretty much go hiking anywhere. It’s practically impossible to get lost because they are so maintained and marked.

Let's go Tramping sign
A well marked New Zealand trail

Brian and I marvel at the work that went into building these trails and then maintaining them. Someone has to bring loads of lumber into the forests to erect the stairs! Someone else carried in steel to build a bridge to cross the river. We are impressed at New Zealand’s trail infrastructure and reaped the benefits.

Pelorus swing Bridge
We hiked across this swing bridge on the South Island

Add to that the lack of dangerous animals and a temperate climate, and hiking in New Zealand is nearly perfect.

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Five Nights in Niue

Discovering a truly special place is one of my favorite aspects of this nomadic seafaring life. We recently sailed from French Polynesia to the compact island nation of Niue, spent five nights in Niue and loved every minute of our short visit there!

About Niue

I hadn’t even heard of Niue a few months ago, and that’s not surprising. Most of its visitors and many of its residents hail from New Zealand. However small, Niue is an impressive country. It left its mark on us!

Niue, which means “Behold the Coconut,” is pronounced Nyoo-Ay.

Niue is a ruggedly beautiful country in the South Pacific Ocean. Itis defined by dramatic high cliffs, which we could see as we approached by boat. This explains why Niue is also known as the Rock of Polynesia.

Looking at Niue from the water.
Looking at Niue from the water. High rugged cliffs, caves, and no beaches

For sailors, Niue has one safe bay on the western side of the island near the town of Alofi. The bay is very deep almost right next to shore (the cliffs), so Niue’s yacht club installed moorings for boats to tie to for their stay. We were one of the first boats there after several years of Covid lockdowns, so it was exciting for us and the people of Niue!

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Things to Do in Pawleys Island SC

We had a whirlwind trip to the U.S. in May, a break from the boat that didn’t really feel like a break because we were so busy! In addition to getting the coveted Covid vaccine, we spent a few weeks catching up with friends, family, and exploring new places. Much of that time was spent where my mom lives and we found a lot of things to do in Pawleys Island SC.

About Pawleys Island

Pawleys Island is a small beach town on a barrier island in the Low Country of South Carolina. Things move slower there, and it’s pretty and peaceful most of the time. Located 70+ miles north of Charleston and 25 miles south of Myrtle Beach, we drove from Florida to visit my mom.

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Hiking in Curaçao

Here’s what to expect and where to go hiking in Curaçao

When we’re near land, Brian and I like hiking. We exercise, commune with nature and wildlife, and see the local views. After too much down time, we’re grateful to be healthy enough to hike and explore the island of Curaçao. Here are some tips and recommendations for hiking in Curaçao.

trail hiking in Curacao
A hiking trail in Curaçao

Be Prepared

Any time you hike, be prepared. Pack essentials like water, snacks, and bug spray. Wear good walking shoes (waterproof), a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen or clothes with SPF protection. Before hiking in Curaçao, read the following tips.

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