New Zealand: A Retrospective

I’m currently writing this post from a modestly sized hotel room in the outermost suburbs of Christchurch. Outside my door I can hear a constant stream of traffic, and planes landing at the airport down the road like clockwork. Inside my well heated room is a fully equipped kitchen, a television, a shower and a toilet. The centre of the room is completely taken up by not one, but two large beds. I shouldn’t feel so far out of place here, but I do.

This is day thirty-one in New Zealand. My month of travelling has taken me 5,000km around the country, with another 265km of walking in between. I’ve lost enough weight now that my pants no longer fit, my mind feels sharper than it ever has - and for the first time in my life I have enough fuzz on my face that in the right lighting, could almost be mistaken for a beard.

This trip has changed me inside and out.

It can be said that at times I’m prone to hyperbole, and that a month away isn’t really all that long in the grand scheme of things. I beg to differ though. I would almost consider a month away the perfect amount of time for what I’m calling “a hard reset”. It provides an opportunity to look back at the life you’ve put on pause, and pick out points that you’re able to refine or completely change. I would also say that spending the majority of my time in New Zealand alone has allowed me to reflect without the influence of others. I often find that at times, my entire personality can change based on who I’m around, or where I am - so it’s been interesting to experience a completely unadulterated version of myself for the first time.

I would say this though - whilst there are absolutely benefits to travelling alone, every non reflective experience I had in New Zealand would have been far better spent in company. To be able to turn to someone and say “holy shit - look at that!” is completely different from counting likes on Instagram & Facebook. Friends would have noticed I was far more active online than I ever am back home. I would say that beyond being a show off (yes, I have an enormous ego that needs feeding), this was also my way of sharing these experiences with anyone that would join me - if only for a few seconds of their day.

So with the mushy, self indulgent nonsense now out of my system - I wanted to sign off on the New Zealand blog with a collection of some of my favourite moments/photos of the trip. I also wanted to thank every single one of you for keeping me company this whole time! I’ve loved the messages, the feedback, and just knowing that all across the world there’s people taking time out of their day to read about my silly little adventures. It really means a lot to me. So until the next trip (which of course I’m already starting to plan), thank you again for reading!

Photographer at @valleypeakweddings & @explorevalleypeak. Two time university dropout. Owner of at least three shirts.