New Zealand

How to NOT Earn Airline Award Miles

by Allie on August 25, 2011

Even though we are experienced travelers, we continue to learn new things about the perks and quirks of international travel. And often, it is the quirks that give the most memorable lessons. This is a tale about how we screwed up and learned how NOT to earn airline miles. Having lived in the San Francisco […]


A South Island Tramp

by Allie on March 24, 2011

We are back in Palmerston North enjoying a low-key day, after a very full three weeks on the South Island.  A few highlights and lowlights of our adventures in the South, in no particular order: Penguins. We saw nearly a hundred penguins in Oamaru, a small town that is home to two penguin species, the […]


Only in New Zealand

by Allie on March 2, 2011

After spending five lovely nights catching up with friends Craig and Adi in Palmerston North, and Justin and Lucie in Wellington, it was time for us to head to the South Island. We had booked our flight to Christchurch over a month ago, and since the airport reopened a few days ago we decided to […]


Climbing Mt. Taranaki

by Mark on February 28, 2011

Mark: Hey look – there’s a big mountain in the middle of Taranaki. Let’s go climb it! Allie: Uh, OK. And with those famous nearly-last words, we find ourselves climbing straight up the side of Mt. Taranaki, the North Island’s second highest mountain at 2,518 meters, and as a nearly perfect cone volcano, one of […]


Christchurch earthquake: We’re OK

by Allie on February 23, 2011

Hi everyone, thanks for the kind messages. We just got back online after spending the last two days in Tongariro National Park. The Christchurch quake happened shortly before we went offline, so we’re just now coming to grips with the extent of the damage. We are on the North Island in Palmerston North, and all […]


Welcome to New Zealand: Stay Right!

by Allie on February 18, 2011

Fourteen hours on an Air New Zealand flight, and we exchange the snowy landscape of Tahoe for this lovely green country in the middle of summer. This is Mark’s first time to New Zealand, and a return trip for me. I lived here for a year on a school exchange program, in the ag/college town […]