There’s nothing like spring hiking in New Zealand, particularly the months of October and November. Gidday, my name’s Andrew Wells, I’m a ‘Kiwi’ hiking guide and here’s why I reckon you’ll love a spring adventure on the trails and tracks of New Zealand.
Thank goodness for spring! It’s that incredibly uplifting time of year we all love so much, winter’s behind us, new life abounds and the promise of warm days and great weather to have some fun outside is now a reality. For us hiking guides, it’s a really exciting time as we’re fresh from our winter hibernation and are super excited about the new season!
When is spring in New Zealand?
Going by the calendar, our spring is usually the months of September, October and November, but just like where you live, this doesn’t always follow hard and fast rules. To us Kiwis, a more regular sign of when spring has arrived is the sign of baby lambs frolicking in the fields, a sight which even warms the hearts of the grizzled old farmers (and hiking guides!)
What’s the weather like in spring?
Anyone who’s visited us down here in NZ will know that the weather doesn’t follow any hard and fast seasonal patterns so the trick is to be prepared. Here’s some hard and fast facts:
Average Spring Daytime High Temperatures:
Auckland 18°C (64°F)
Christchurch 17°C (63°F)
Queenstown 15°C (59°F)
It’s usually pretty comfortable in the daytime, you’ll need a long sleeved jacket or sweater but usually nothing more. Mornings may be a little cooler, perfect for that New Zealand merino wool sweater you’ve just picked up.
What’s to love about spring hiking in New Zealand?
Wildlife up close and personal
This is the time of year our friends in the animal kingdom are welcoming their young into the world and they’re there for us to see. On our spring trips we’re regularly delighted by the sights of baby fur seals on the Fiordland Coast, penguins returning to their nests after a day’s ‘work’ out fishing in the ocean and sharing our walking tracks with families of native birds.
If it’s the plant kingdom which captivates you then New Zealand will be paradise - spring is the time our natives start blooming and many flowers have completely gone by summertime, making October and November the best months. There are literally thousands of types of flowers here in NZ, many of which you will have never seen before. My springtime favourites are the Mount Cook Lily, Greenhood Orchids and New Zealand Tree Fuchsia.
New Zealand is a country of waterfalls, from the most intricate and delicate trickles to the raw unleashed power of mother nature. With the snow melt after winter, spring is ‘waterfall season’ and you’ll be in awe of the waterfalls in and around the glacial valleys of the Southern Alps. Where is my favourite place for waterfalls? From the towering falls of Milford Sound, the sheer force of Giant’s Gate Falls on the Milford Track to the picture postcard of Little Homer Falls on the Hollyford Track - Fiordland is waterfall heaven.
Get a great deal on your airfare
If you’re coming to New Zealand in October and November, great news, this is the time of year the airlines want you on their planes and will have deals running. High season in New Zealand is from the end of December through to February but the spring months are ‘shoulder season’ and the best time to find a great airfare. Just like the airlines, we often run specials for spring trips too - see our current travel deals here.
So there it is, my take on spring hiking in New Zealand. I’ve been guiding hiking trips here in New Zealand since 1999 and some of my best memories are from spring trips. Everything is shiny and bursting with life, the whole country is on a high, which is the perfect vibe for your trip.
Every spring, we hit the road on our ‘World Heritage Walking Tour’, a fully guided small friendly group tour with absolutely everything on your New Zealand ‘Trip of a Lifetime’ wishlist. You’ll love the best walks and unforgettable activities in the most stunning spots and after each fun day, relax in the comfort of four star accommodation and savour fabulous New Zealand food and wine at the best hand picked restaurants.
If you’d like to talk about your New Zealand ‘Trip of a Lifetime’ then drop us a line now!
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