New Zealand

New Zealand | A Travel Guide

Last week my younger sister and I visited New Zealand. It has always been a dream of mine to go and I am proud of myself for finally doing it. Traveling is stressful for me but when I look back, it’s always worth the anxiety it creates. I have seen some incredible places and New Zealand is now one of them. 

Mt. Eden

Our first morning in Auckland we headed up to Mt. Eden, it was about a ten minute walk to the top and we had a great view of the city. If I lived there I would do this hike every day! 

Waiheke Island

We took a ferry to Waiheke Island where we booked a wine tasting tour. I grew up in California and have been to wine country more times than I can count; it’s one of my favorite places so I didn’t have high expectations for Waiheke Island wineries. It was incredible though, not only were there gorgeous wineries and rolling hills like Napa, but there were ocean views and beaches too. You get a little bit of everything in New Zealand. 


On our third day we drove down to Rotorua and stopped at this Alpaca Farm on our way. The alpacas were so cute! They got right up in our faces the whole time and Mackenzie and I couldn’t stop laughing. 

Rotorua was beautiful and cold! We visited New Zealand during their winter and it was so nice to get a break from the Texas heat and humidity. 

The best part was this lakeside mineral bath we rented at the Polynesian Spa.  


We also drove to Coromandel but it was rainy so we didn't stay for long. We stopped at the Te Waihou Walkway on our way up. I have never seen water so pure or clean!

If New Zealand is on your bucket list you should definitely go. The landscape is so incredible, the food is fantastic and everyone is really friendly. Plus there are tons of cute animals everywhere you go! 


Ortolana : Farm to table fare in a relaxed and cozy setting. The lamb and fish entree were so good we went back the next night. 

Little Bird Unbakery : Organic, raw, vegan cafe that serves meals as well as prepared desserts, juices, salads and more. I had their sprouted bread with cashew cheese, tomato, basil and balsamic reduction for breakfast one morning and it was amazing!! 

Janken : The best Japanese food I have ever had. They have organic, gluten free and vegan/vegetarian options. I had their super greens salad and vegetarian rolls. We also had coconut based ice cream for dessert! 

Craft Kitchen : My sister only eats paleo so she loved this place. They had free-range, pastured eggs, bacon and paleo bread options. Their coffee was good too, we went every day we were in Auckland. 

Wise Cicada : Grocery store + plant based cafe with lots of great options for takeaway.

Huckleberry : Our favorite grocery store, we went several times for fruit and loaves of paleo bread! They also have a little cafe area where you can get smoothies, juice, coffee and some prepared foods.