Jun 10 • 17M

New Zealand Confidential: That's a wrap from Middle Earth

In this episode: Waiheke island, the Weta Workshop, and final thoughts on visiting New Zealand (recorded 6/10/2023 in Auckland, New Zealand)

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Appears in this episode

Christopher Elliott
Aren Elliott
Iden Elliott
Straight talk about consumer news and travel. It's the podcast the travel industry doesn't want you to hear.
Episode details

Today we are bidding farewell to New Zealand. After two months of exploring Middle Earth, we’re leaving with many happy memories — and a little decision paralysis.

Welcome to the Elliott Confidential podcast. To get the full Elliott Confidential experience, please subscribe to this newsletter. PS: I’m giving away a box of Aquavault ChargeCards to random subscribers this week. They’re small but powerful chargers that will ensure your phone never dies when you're traveling.

Here’s this week’s question: Have you ever had decision paralysis when it comes to choosing a destination? Some countries offer so much that choosing just one place is impossible. I imagine the United States is like that for a lot of foreign visitors. Where do you go? I would love to hear your story. As always, we’ll read your comments in the next podcast.

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What kind of decision paralysis did we have? Well, we can’t really decide which part of New Zealand we would come back to. We loved the North Island and South Island. I’m thinking January in Christchurch would be incredible. Tune into the podcast for the debate.

No visit to New Zealand would be complete without experiencing Middle Earth. And there’s no better place to do that than at Wētā Workshop, the film effects company known for its work in The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit and Avatar.

The boys and I are big fans of these movies and we were fascinated by the tour. However, if you’re expecting to see a lot of memorabilia from the famous films, you might be better off renting the movies. Copyright laws make it impossible to do, say, an Avatar-themed attraction. But still, it was pretty awesome.

The weather in Auckland has been spectacular, considering it’s the middle of the winter. We waited for a calm day to head out to Waiheke Island. It offers ziplining, wine tours, biking, and expensive real estate. We found a nice beach and Iden edited a video while I caught up on some phone calls.

The beaches on Waiheke are not sandy. They’re little pebbles, which remind us of the islands in Alaska. (Nicer weather here, though.) If you want to go island hopping in Auckland, do it during the week. The weekends get super busy, with long lines for the ferry.

Don’t forget this week’s question: Have you ever had decision paralysis when it comes to choosing a destination? We love getting your comments.

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