Winston Aldworth

Winston Aldworth is the Herald's Travel Editor.

Room check: Mighty Deuce 2Y campervan

Winston Aldworth stays in a Mighty Deuce 2Y campervan in Waipara.

A cutaway image showing the interior of Mighty's Deuce campervan. Image / Supplied
A cutaway image showing the interior of Mighty's Deuce campervan. Image / Supplied

Getting there: A courtesy shuttle picks me up outside Christchurch Airport and drives me the two-minute journey to Mighty's pick-up centre on De Havilland Way. Don't try to walk it - especially on a cold morning. And at the moment, that's the only kind of morning Christchurch serves up.

Check-in experience: A big tent with gas heaters to keep you warm while your vehicle is readied. The campervan pick-ups have been based in this big tent since March and they're due for new premises by April. Tourists stand about warming their hands at gas heaters. The vehicles are generally ready in about 15 minutes. To a wide-eyed out-of-towner, the big tent seems very Christchurch-y and post-earthquake-y.

"We'd rather be in our new building," says a staffer.

A video with driving tips for foreigners plays - the loop runs through four or five languages and the guy in it looks like Cory Jane.

When you're on the campervan circuit, you get used to seeing the shelves of unused food other travellers have left behind.

Why do these people buy so much vinegar?

Room: For me, Mighty's Deuce 2Y has got the motorhome size situation sorted. There's just about room to swing a cat, but it's compact enough to have done away with the trimmings that make most motorhomes feel like Panzers. It's the perfect short-breaker for a couple. It's got a high roof, a cooktop and a shower/toilet unit.

Price: Minimum hire is five days and you can get into one for around $415 (including insurance). Prices vary depending on where you're picking up and dropping off, but well under $100 a day is a good price.

What's so good about this place? It's mobile and a very comfortable drive. Very little road noise.

And the bad? Possibly because she handles so lightly, the vehicle is deceptively long when negotiating a tight carpark. But you get used to that.

What's in the neighbourhood? We parked in Waipara. There are a lot of vineyards, a couple of them with fantastic lunch options.

The bed: The back third of the van converts into a good-sized double, with slats stored under the couches forming the base. It's a comfy scratcher.

A room with a view? Stunning. We were parked at a mate's house. He lives at a vineyard.

Bathroom: My "no using the toilet" policy was strictly enforced.

Noise: A lot. The mate who lives at the vineyard was having a party. Fortunately, we were the noisiest ones.

Perfect for: Anyone who likes to wake up to a different view every morning.

Would I return? I've driven the bigger motorhomes, and this size is more fun.

CHECKLIST

Mighty has a range of campervans available for hire.

The writer stayed courtesy of Mighty.

- NZ Herald

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