Archive for March, 2017

How Locals Vacation in New Zealand

You often hear about New Zealand’s incredible, stunning luxury lodges around Hawke’s Bay and Queenstown, but Kiwis themselves have always been drawn to out-of-the-way places. They want to be at the far corners of the country, where big waves roll just off the front porch, long-legged seabirds scavenge in the sand for insects, and the only sounds are cicadas chirping. The iconic New Zealand “bach” (vacation home) personifies the Kiwi character: unpretentious, individual and creative. It is also a place to find solace and silence. There are extensive listings of Kiwi beaches for rent throughout the country, of course, but we found out about these three awesome places where you can stay to have a real Kiwi baech experience.

Onemana Bach - lo res

Onemana Bach

Coromandel: Paradise Found at Onemana

Internationally renowned New Zealand music producer Chris Parry (The Cure, The Jam) has slept in some of the world’s most luxurious penthouse suites, however, when he thinks of paradise, his beach on the Coromandel Peninsula is what comes to mind. Accessed only by a forestry road, his beach at Onemana, north of popular Whangamata Beach, is the polar opposite of his jet set music life. It is remote, slow moving and soul restoring – and you too can rent it!

Woodpecker Bay lo res

Woodpecker Bay

Woodpecker Bay: Built on the Rocks

When big waves pound the South Island’s West Coast at Woodpecker Bay, guests at this mid-century era bach have a seaside seat. Owner Daniel Beetham says guests love the bach’s wild location and the sense of peace they get when they walk through the door. Lovingly furnished with New Zealand art and items bought from secondhand shops, there is an old claw bath and a wood-burning stove. Guests at Woodpecker Bay Bach – Life on the Edge (15 minutes north of Punakaiki) can sit and watch the rough sea batter the rocks just outside the window or – for those who want to get their feet wet – there is a great swimming hole at Fox River, 2.5 miles to the south. As for the name, “Woodpecker Bay,” well it is a Kiwi mystery… New Zealand has no woodpeckers!

Stewart Island: A Bird Lover’s Paradise

Located only 39 steps from the bach to the beach, guests at Skip’s Place are woken by a deafening dawn chorus as bellbirds, grey warblers and kakariki warming up their vocal chords. Owner Holger Lachman, originally from Germany, visited Stewart Island – on New Zealand’s southern extremity – as a backpacker 20 years ago and never left. The weatherboard bach has been fully modernized, yet some original features remain – guests have to light a fire for hot water – but Lachman says visitors like the rustic do-it-yourself aspects. They also enjoy how dark it is when night falls, which is great for stargazing and seeing the Southern Cross. kip-039s-place-stewart-island- new-zealand.html

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