Top Ten Australia & New Zealand Motorhome Destinations
A motorhome provides you with so much more than just a convenient place to sleep, it allows you to explore places in your own time and without the need to rush off to the next place, extend hotel bookings, or deal with flying from place to place. Owning a motorhome means you get to enjoy quality time discovering places with your loved ones while making amazing memories.
So where are the best places to visit in Australia and New Zealand when travelling in a motorhome? This article aims to help you find the very best, must see destinations across these 2 countries when using a motorhome. Read on to discover some of Australia and New Zealand's best kept secrets when it comes to motor homing.
Known as the world’s youngest country, New Zealand offers a whole host of exciting destinations in some of the most astoundingly scenic settings imaginable. If it is raw and natural beauty that gets your motorhoming heart beating, then this is the country for you. Many of us have unwittingly seen New Zealand's majestic landscapes on TV and in movies such as The Lord Of The Rings, The Hobbit, The Chronicles of Narnia and Vertical Limit. Its rugged and green landscapes make for a destination in which you get to reconnect with the wild, and this is all made easier when staying in a motorhome.
You will most likely find yourself entering or exiting through here, so it makes sense to dedicate a few days to explore the local area. Driving in New Zealand is a cinch as there is not much in the way of traffic, the roads are in great condition, and finding your way is easy as there are not that many roads across the country as you would find in many other developed countries.
So what is there to do in Auckland? Well, apart from the obvious sightseeing such as the harbour, a trip up the Sky Tower and a look at the Viaduct, there is an amazing beach not far from the city called Piha Beach, which is located to the west of Auckland. Reaching Piha Beach is not possible by bus or any other form of public transport, so owning your own motorhome makes reaching it easy.
If you feel like having a day or 2 by the beach, you can get a pitch at the Piha Domain Motor Camp, which is located just a stone's throw from the beach and Lion rock. The site has all the usual facilities such as a toilet and shower block and makes for an ideal first night pitch up when travelling.
If beaches are your thing, then the Coromandel Peninsula will be one of the must see places on your itinerary. Famed for its Cathedral Cove, the nearby town of Coromandel is the perfect place to try some local Specialty cuisine such as green lipped mussels cooked in butter.
There is also a beach known as 'Hot Water Beach' which holds a layer of hot water just beneath the sand. Take a spade with you and dig out your own natural hot water spa pool. Getting tide timings is important as reaching the layer of hot water beneath the sand is only possible 2 hours before or after low tide. If one day is not enough time for you in this beautiful part of New Zealand, you can pitch up at Long Bay Motor Camp and spend a few more days exploring in your own time.
Rotorua is a town of cultural and ecological importance. Famed for smelling of eggs, this town is surrounded by a whole host of natural springs and volcanic geysers and mud pools. Many of the local residents are Maori, so having a chance to explore the local customs, traditions, and lifestyles make for an interesting and educational stay.
For £30 you can take a tour to Whakarewarewa, one of the only thermal villages left. Here, the locals will show you how to cook underground using the naturally occurring thermal heat before treating you to a cultural show passed down through the generations. Kuirau Park Motor Lodge Park is the perfect place for setting up base for a day or twos exploring of the local area.
Taupo and Tongariro National Park
Taupo and Tongariro National Park is one of the most astoundingly beautiful national parks in New Zealand. A backdrop of volcanic mountains makes for the perfect hiking and adventure location. There is a free motorhome site called Reid's farm, which allows visitors to pitch up at no cost. In the local vicinity, you can enjoy many adrenaline pumping activities such as sky diving, mountain climbing and visiting the falls.
Containing 3 active volcanoes, a hot river, plenty of chances to partake in bungee jumping or have a ride on some vertigo inducing swings, the park offers entertainment that the whole family can enjoy. The park also contains some of the best hiking opportunities in New Zealand, with the day long Alpine walk being the jewel of its crown. Crystal clear waters, hot springs and thermal lakes provide a plethora of opportunities to soak off any aches and pains and feel at one with nature, so make sure you carry some swimwear and a towel with you.
No trip would be complete without a stopover in Wellington. This bustling city offers everything an intrepid explorer could want. It is one of those rare places where the rolling countryside meets a bustling, metropolitan city surrounded by the ocean. Wellington is a modern city and Cuba street should definitely be on your to do list. Filled with art, modern décor and plenty of chances to do some shopping, Cuba Street is the more ‘hipster side’ to wellington.
One of the ultimate activities to do when in Wellington is to take the cable car to the top of the hill and look over the city. Enjoy a sunset or a sunrise trip to make the most of your experience before wandering back down through a perfectly designed botanical gardens. To finish your trip, enjoy a drive around the entire bay and take advantage of some fine dining opportunities on the beach. There is plenty of local seafood on offer and many excellent places to stop off and explore along the way.
Given its proximity to New Zealand, Australia also makes for a fantastic motor homing destination. With roads that stretch beyond the horizon, lots of monuments and iconic landscapes, some of the friendliest people on earth, and activities to keep everyone entertained, Australia is more than just a backpackers destination. So what are the top 5 places to visit in Australia in a motorhome?
Naturally, the first destination on this list is Ayers Rock. Possibly the most famous landmark in Australia, Ayers rock is one of the natural wonders of the world. While there are not masses of things to do in the area, seeing the towering rock at sunrise or sunset makes for a magical experience. Here you will also experience the brightest and clearest views of the stars like you never knew possible. There is a feeling of serenity in the area and it is one of the few places where you can enjoy true silence of an evening.
Ayers Rock Campground - Ayers Rock Resort is the perfect site for parking up and staying a day or two. Of course, you could always park out in the wild open space if you preferred.
Kakadu National Park
Located around 170km southeast of Darwin, Kakadu National park is roughly half the size of Switzerland and has plenty of fun and relaxing activities to take part in. Being a landmark of outstanding natural beauty, Kakaru National Park can offer several days of exploration for the intrepid explorer.
The park offers you the chance to take part in one of its many bush walks where you will get to see plenty of the local and native flora a fauna. There are also helicopter rides available so that you can get a bird's eye view of the land below. One of the best ways to enjoy your time in Kakadu National Park is to take a wildlife boat tour where you will be guided along the waterways with a knowledgeable guide. Discover the history of Australia's wild bush and explore some of the best scenery on offer. The national park contains many sites for motorhomes to pitch up at and helps you get the most out of your time in the area.
Shark Bay is the most western point of Australia and is a must for those who appreciate beaches, reefs and crystal clear ocean waters. Located 820km from Perth, a motorhome is the perfect way for reaching Shark Bay. Aside from the sprawling natural beauty of the countryside, there are plenty of fun sea activities to take part in.
Shark Bay is home to the largest population of sea slugs in the world, it also has the world’s biggest sea grass fields. While at Shark Bay, you will also have the chance to see plenty of marine wildlife from Indo-pacific bottle nosed dolphins, humpback whales, whale sharks and green back turtles. There are many tours on offer in the area, with the glass bottomed tour boats being the best for looking beneath the waves without actually getting wet.
Shark bay has lots of different types of accommodation available, including plenty of centrally located motorhome and camp sites. Given its natural beauty, Shark bay should definitely be towards the top of your ‘to visit’ list.
Port Arthur is one of Australia's best preserved convict settlement sites. From 1833 to 1853, port Arthur was maintained by British rule and used as a place of punishment for both British and Irish criminals. Port Arthur was surrounded by shark infested waters, meaning that any man who tried to escape would ultimately meet his maker in the jaws of a shark. Historically, the site is very important and allows visitors a look back into the history of British punishments.
At port Arthur you will get to see the buildings as they were during the time and give you a chance to explore some of the homes, the factories, coal mines and the island of the dead. There are plenty of motorhome and campsites available across the Tasmanian peninsular making exploration of Port Arthur and the surrounding areas an easy experience.
There is no other place that screams ‘Australia’ more than Bondi Beach. Located just 7km from Sydney, this is a must see destination for everyone exploring Australia. Possibly one of the most famous beaches in the world, Bondi offers you the chance to sit back and soak up everything Australian. Spend a day taking surfing lessons, browse the many shops and markets selling local wares, enjoy a meal and a drink at one of thousands of local bistros, bars and restaurants, or simply lie back and enjoy the sun.
Bondi has many conveniently located motorhome sites which make travelling around Bondi, Sydney and the surrounding vicinity as easy as pie. While public transport is readily available in the area, being able to drive where you want when you want makes your visit all the more personalized to what you want to do.
No matter where you travel to in Australia or New Zealand, one thing is for sure. You will be greeted with friendliness while being given the chance to see some of the world most beautiful hot spots and all with the added luxury of doing it at your own pace.