I'm hiring a campervan with a couple of friends to drive around our beautiful country, which is something I've always wanted to do. We'll be doing the freedom camping thing (tidying up after ourselves of course) but I did have some concerns about safety when you get off the beaten track. Do you have any suggestions for staying secure on the road?
If you pay attention to the news, there's definitely been a number of horror stories involving freedom-camping tourists - most of the incidents tend to involve overseas visitors who've heard that New Zealand is a "safe country" and have been a bit complacent. It's a bummer too, because it's not exactly the greatest impression - although to our credit, Kiwis tend to rally around these unfortunate travellers and help them make the most of the rest of their holiday.
So it's great you're thinking about this - some of the most beautiful spots in the country can also be very isolated, which is a danger. I've asked my contacts at Jucy Campervans to help out with some tips.
Here are some basics:
Last week I answered a question about bringing kava back to New Zealand from Fiji. Zbigniew Dumienski of the Auckland University Kava Society got in touch with me via Twitter to raise awareness of the fact that it is possible to get great kava in New Zealand. If you've developed a liking for kava's sedative effects, do a bit of research - there just might be a kava club near you.