Autumn is a great time to head outdoors in New Zealand
New Zealand is beautiful all year round but, with the changing of the seasons, autumn from March to May is a special time as the glorious gold and red hues spread across the land. Walking through forests and vineyards is a magical experience. Although cooler, the days are often sunny without the excessive summer heat making autumn a great time for many to take part in their favorite outdoor activities.
Things to do and places to be
Autumn brings more stable weather and is a great time to get outdoors and try your hand at cycling through the countryside or hiking the great walks. Trout fishing is a popular pastime as the spawning season begins and trout make their way up the rivers. Whale watching comes alive as greater numbers of migrating whales pass through New Zealand waters making their way north to escape the cold of the Antarctic.
Some spectacular scenery is on show in the autumn months, especially in places like the North Island’s Hawkes Bay and the South Island’s Central Otago. And don’t forget that these two regions are producers of some of New Zealand’s world famous Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir wines so there’s an added incentive to hit the vineyard trails. Relax and take in the views while enjoying the premium wines and hospitality offered by some fantastic vineyards.
Camping in Autumn
With the more settled weather when it comes to things to do in autumn camping is up there. One of the best things about this time of year is that there are fewer tourists at campgrounds and out hiking so it’s a perfect time to do some camping in a quieter more relaxed setting without the large crowds everywhere. As well as fewer people there are also fewer mosquitoes and sandflies making the evenings sitting around a cosy campfire much more pleasant. And campsite costs are also lower at this time when compared to the peak summer season.
What to Pack
Camping in cooler weather requires more careful thought and planning if you want to be comfortable. To stay warm, make sure that you have a suitable camping gear. Good three or four season tents for sale in NZ are recommended. Designed to be lightweight, compact and durable, they’re constructed from materials that can withstand the weather. You’ll also need more protection to maintain warmth coupled with greater ventilation options to prevent condensation build up on cool nights.
Sleeping pads, airbeds or air pads are also essential gear if you’re camping during autumn. These pads are insulated underneath to heat up the sleeping bag to keep you warm throughout the night. Ensure that you have good quality sleeping bags with comfort ratings that are sleeping bags are able to handle the lower temperatures you’ll be camping in.
With the shorter days camping lanterns, flashlights (torches) or headlamps will make life easier when the sun goes down. And of course, make sure that you have adequate warm clothing like thermals, fleece and down jackets to match the cool weather conditions.
With a little preparation, camping in cooler autumn weather can be a great opportunity to see New Zealand under a different light. Be sure to check out local camping specialists for must-have supplies before you go.
5 Places to Visit in the Autumn in New Zealand, BackpackerGuide.nz
7 Tips to Survive Cold-Weather Camping, PopularMechanics.comCold Weather Tents: How to Choose the Right Product, Survival-Mastery.com