Franz Josef Glacier – Activities on the Glacier

– Did you know New Zealand’s South Island has over 3000 glaciers?  Franz Josef Glacier is one offering many outdoor activities.

Franz Josef GlacierSpectacularly picturesque Franz Josef has 3 glaciers in view surrounding the New Zealand town in Glacier County. Franz Josef is filled with natural attractions. ‘Never lose an opportunity of seeing something beautiful, for beauty is God’s handwriting.’

The friendly town of Franz Josef provides access to many activities in, on and around the Franz Josef Glacier. What an exhilarating experience to explore this magnificent World Heritage Area.

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Franz Josef New Zealand – Glacier Country Experiences off the Glacier

– Do you want to know and see the activities beyond the glaciers in Franz Josef?

Franz Josef New Zealand

Nature’s splendor surrounds Franz Josef New Zealand with rain forests, ice glaciers, mountains, the Tasman Sea, and the bird life. In summer there are gorgeous flowers, tall fern trees in the rainforest or as the New Zealanders say the magical Jurassic Forest, and crystal clear lakes, rivers and creeks.

The Franz Josef World Heritage area is chock full of easy to extreme activities from Continue reading

Akaroa New Zealand – for beach, wildlife, great seafood

Akaroa New Zealand

Akaroa New Zealand Harbour and cloudy skyWe are wildlife voyeurs and take every opportunity to experience the animals in their natural habitats on all of our travels. When Coast Up Close Wildlife Adventures invited us to join them while we were on New Zealand’s South Island, we planned a couple days in Akaroa New Zealand. So glad we did! See Akaroa with us … Continue reading

TranzAlpine Scenic Railway Journey – 5 reasons to take the train

New Zealand’s TranzAlpine Scenic Railway Journey

KiwiRail's TranzAlpine Railway empty carWhen thinking of the Alps, the Swiss Alps come to mind; I never considered any other Alps, and yet New Zealand has the beautiful Southern Alps.  And the TranzAlpine Scenic Railway Journey is the best way to see the Southern Alps.

Simply sit back and gaze at the stunning scenery through the huge windows in the comfortable seats of the TranzAlpine Scenic Railway.   What a wonderful opportunity to take in the Canterbury Plains, the farms, the foothills to the mountains, the gorges, river valleys, and the jaw dropping snowcapped Southern Alps, even in summer. Or …

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Top 10 Favorite Places in New Zealand’s South Island

Top 10 New Zealand’s South Island

Want to know the best places to spend your time when in New Zealand’s South Island?

Lochmara pole carvingsAfter completing a trip of a lifetime, we are excited to share our favorites. Four and a half weeks in New Zealand’s South Island, and we can show you mountaintops, snow, beaches, oceans, wineries, seafood, varied history and culture.

This is the first article in a series on the top places to visit in New Zealand, Australia, and the Pacific South Seas. Since there is so much to share, this first article will give an overview of our top 10 favorite places in New Zealand’s South Island. It will be followed by more in-depth information and photos about each of the top places we recommend and others, as well as those to avoid that are over-hyped. Continue reading

Ecuador’s Quilotoa Loop Adventure

A top spot on my Ecuador Bucket List was our Quilotoa Loop Adventure.  The draw was the many colorful indigenous populations and their markets, the perfect turquoise blue Quilotoa Lake, the art of the Tigua people, and the surrounding snow-capped Andean volcanoes.  Get the picture?  Here are a few.

The Quilotoa Loop

The Quilotoa Loop is a route around the lake’s remote back country towns off of the Pan-american Highway and Continue reading

Ecuador’s Diverse Distinct Regions

 Amazingly Diverse Distinct Regions in Ecuador

Peguche Waterfall - Ibarra

Peguche Waterfall

Ecuador is tiny. In the diverse distinct regions in Ecuador, you will find extreme beauty from its historic Andean cities to its nature. The nature of Ecuador consists of micro-climates from snow-capped peaks (there are 44 peaks with 14 active volcanoes) to humid jungles to warm coastal beaches.

It is home to: Continue reading

Traveling Ecuador

2 months Traveling in Ecuador

ecuador quito teleferico

Tom and I spent 2 months in 2015-2016 traveling the small but diverse country of Ecuador. On Tuesday of this week, as I was leaving the gym, a woman from my dance class asked, “Why did you choose Ecuador? It is an unusual choice.”

We loved the variety of experiences and enjoyed many of the local people we met in Ecuador.

Why choose Ecuador? 

Here are the reasons to visit Ecuador:  Continue reading

International Travel, Part 2, 10 Key Things

This is Part 2 of our post on International Travel and the key things we have learned to do during travel to make it more enjoyable.

[Click here to see Part 1 of this post]

International Travel – To get the most from the local environment

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Costa Rica Adventures

Rainforest adventures in Costa Rica Costa Rica is an interesting and diverse country chock full of fascinating nature-related adventures.  This series of posts provides what Costa Rica Adventures we chose to do and why, when to go, accommodations, and some of the professionals we used to enhance our trip.

While many people fly into San Jose, Juan Santamaria International Airport, because they want to see the volcanoes and cloud forests, we chose to fly to Liberia, Daniel Oduber Quiros International Airport in Guanacaste, which is in the Northwest on the Pacific side.  Guanacaste is the drier region, and offers great Costa Rica land and sea adventures.  Guanacaste has the jungles, rivers, zip-lines, and more.  The Costa Rica Adventures that  Continue reading