Local car rental in New Zealand from the perspective of a girl who did just that!
By Becky Coe
Becky is a passionate prose writer. She travels the world, collecting and curating stories of human condition to inspire others to make and tell their own. She shares stories on her travel blog findingsummersend.com along with beautiful photography on her personal website – Beckyalicecoe.com. It’s never about the destination, the true experience comes from the journey. As a keen traveller and avid researcher, she loves to share her best finds and secrets with her niche audience, including the less discussed mishaps on the way!
You’ll usually find her writing, taking photographs, or making friends with every cat she meets.
Local car rental in New Zealand
New Zealand is one of the best places in the world to take a road trip. There are places you just simply wouldn’t be able to see without the freedom of controlling your fate on the open road. Travelling by car is the absolute best way to see this magnificent landscape and experience the fascinating culture that the land of the long white cloud has to offer. There are plenty of options to get around; buses, coaches, cabs, even hitchhiking. But nothing is more flexible than having your own vehicle. No time constraints, no deadlines, and no missed appointments. Just you and the open road, whenever you want, wherever you want, with whoever you want.
To buy or to rent in New Zealand?
Buying and selling a car in New Zealand can be slightly tricky, especially if you’re wanting to take advantage of the best travel seasons. Selling a car in the winter out of season in New Zealand can be difficult, and you may end up losing money. If you’re only travelling for a few weeks, it’s easier and cheaper to arrange a local rental car. But a lot of companies can be pricey, have hefty bonds, and have a bunch of complicated rules. Many rental companies in New Zealand also do not allow you to travel both Islands on the same agreement. With my Car Your Rental, there are no borders! You can travel between both Islands with the same car, drama free.
Why rent a car from a local in New Zealand?
Hiring a car with My Car Your Rental means you’re dealing with local owners who don’t fuss. Renting from locals is also a fantastic option to choose over renting from traditional companies. It’s much cheaper, much easier to organise a long term rental, and you have peace of mind knowing you’re dealing with a real person and not a big, impersonal corporation. My Car Your Rental is like the Airbnb for cars. Our cars are owned by locals, so you get exactly what you see in the picture. No nasty surprises or mystery cars when you turn up to collect. Pick the appropriate car or campervan for your journey and away you go. Renting from the locals also means you’re spending your dollars directly within the community. Cars are owned, maintained, and covered by the owners. Which means we can cut down costs and pass them back to you. With a local rental, you also get local perks! Many of the owners can provide you with extras such as camping gear, and of course, a wealth of local knowledge that is far more valuable than anything in this corner of the world.
Spend more time travelling New Zealand and less time worrying.
Getting out on the open road in New Zealand couldn’t be easier. There are also no dramas on the road if you have a breakdown or mechanical trouble. Our safe and reliable platform provides all the cover you need, and our friendly local owners will be with you every step of the way if anything goes wrong.
So, you’ve rented a car from My Car Your Rental? What’s next?
Exploring New Zealand of course. To get you started, I’ve created a comprehensive list of some of the most incredible, most remote, and unmissable destinations to add to your New Zealand itinerary. I travelled to all of these places with my own personal vehicle organised through My Car Your Rental. It was in incredible experience every step, hop, and drive of the way.
Let the journey begin.
The North Island is too often under appreciated. But the land of the long white cloud has a plethora of delights hidden in plain sight among the glorious greenery and pristine beaches. From endless sand dunes, to epic surf beaches. Across splendid heaths and through mysterious forests. The North Island is what inspired Middle Earth, and it doesn’t take much to see why.
Auckland is the main hub of the North Island. The city is well worth the exploration, and is a great base to access many of the beaches around the coast such as Piha and the gloriously remote Whatipu in the West. As well as Waiheke and Rangitoto Islands to the East. Easily accessible by ferry from the mainland.
The West Coast
Did you know that the West coast of the North Island is covered with black sand beaches? You’d be forgiven for believing you were in the remote wilderness of Iceland among this effortlessly natural beauty. In the summer months, the North Island has a temperate, tropical climate. Perfect for spending a few glorious days swimming in the ocean and relaxing on the glittering black sand. My particular favourite is Muriwai Beach. Home to the largest colony of gannets in New Zealand. Clustered around the scenic cliffs, these ethereal sea birds are a captivating sight all year round.
Tongariro National Park
Tongariro National Park is the jewel in the crown at the centre of the North Island. Home to the impressive collection of dormant volcanoes Ruapehu, Nguarahoe (Mount Doom!), and Tongariro. The Tongariro crossing is one of New Zealand’s famed Great Walks, and a must do on your trip across the country. Hiking the crossing will bring you face to face with fascinating geology in this incredibly varying landscape. Pass through open land bursting with wildflowers in the summertime, get up close and personal with active volcanoes, and experience entrancing geothermal activity all year round.
Known for its unique geothermal activity. Rotorua is the heart of Maori culture in the North Island. Learn about their fascinating history in the village of Te Puia. Where you can also witness the amazing Lady Knox Geyser shooting boiling water 20 metres into the air. As well as various gardens showing the ways in which geothermal activity can shape the land, from bubbling mud pools to expansive steaming lakes.
Cape Reinga/ Northland
Northland is so often overlooked by travellers, but contains some of the most wonderful and varying landscapes in the whole of New Zealand. Travel to the very tip of the North Island to the home of Cape Reinga. There you’ll find a quaint little lighthouse that marks the most northern tip of New Zealand. Behind you is an incredible vantage point of one of the most incredibly scenic and remote pieces of coast in the country. Travel like a local and make the most of your time here. Head to the lighthouse before sunrise and be one of the first people in the world to greet the day. Then head down the East side to Tapotupotu beach and spend your afternoon body boarding in the crystal waters. By late afternoon all of the tours from the South have returned South, and left ninety-mile beach almost empty. You’ll have the epic sand dunes all to yourself to sand board gleefully into the sunset.
If you’re a Lord of the Rings fan, there are many corners of the country that will have you screaming with delight. But the most famous part of it all is Hobbiton. Wander around the land of the Hobbits. A village built from the imagination of the creators, and captured forever on screen and in our hearts. See if you can spot the fake tree somewhere among the hobbit houses.
The Cook Straight
A lot of rental companies will only allow you to drive in the Island you rented on. My Car Your Rental has no borders! It makes travelling both islands easy and effortless. Just book yourself a place on the ferry and away you go, car and all, to enjoy the peace and serenity that is the Marlborough Sounds.
The South Island is where beauty was invented. Driving through this diverse land leaves you breathless. With a new wonder around every turn, an awe-inspiring land in every corner. The home of Mountains, lakes, and adrenaline pumping activity. The South Island is where dreams are made and wishes granted.
Imagine some of the most breathtaking beaches and coastal sights you’ve ever seen. Double them, and you have an idea of what it’s like to experience the Abel Tasman. A multi-day hiking and kayaking adventure will take you into some of the most remote and stunning scenery on the South Island. Along with numerous sea birds, seal encounters and whale watching!
Driving through Arthur’s pass alone is one of the greatest driving experiences in the country. Connecting the West Coast to the Central Otago region. Arthur’s Pass is towered by mountains on all sides. With a plethora of stop offs and hiking/cycling/tramping routes along the way. Home to one of the most challenging and rewarding climbs in the country; the summit of Avalanche Peak provides incredible views over the surrounding ranges. The perfect introduction to some of the best landscapes the South has to offer.
Queenstown – The adventure capital of New Zealand. The place where adventure was invented and adrenaline seeking was born. Queenstown has it all. Experience world-class snowboarding and skiing in Cardrona and the Remarkables; test your wits with the countries highest bungee jump; relax as you make your way up a mountain on a gondola, before careering back down on a wild ride luge. Top it off with a skydive, or a scenic flight across the epic landscape. Enter the adventure capital of the world, and you’ll never want to leave.
Franz Josef and Fox Glacier
New Zealand is home to a remarkable amount of glaciers, and each one of them is simply astounding to witness. Take a helicopter flight to land directly on the ice at Franz Josef and spend the afternoon exploring deep ice caves and mountain fissures with expert knowledgeable guides. Hearing the crack of the ice and the slow rumble of the glacier as it moves almost unnoticeable under your feet is quite the phenomenon. Once you’ve tired yourself out discovering ice caves and hidden treasures, head to the Franz Josef hot pools to relax and ease away all those aches and pains.
Christchurch, the main city on the South Island, has been racked by earthquakes in recent years. The city has a unique charm, and one of the best cafe scenes to be found in the whole country. From the CBD you can easily access some of the best sights. The Akaroa coastal peninsula is merely a stones throw away, and a day trip in the Southern Alps is easily managed.
Milford Sound/ Fiordland National Park
No New Zealand trip would be complete without a mind-blowing visit to Fiordland National Park and the iconic Milford Sound. The road to Milford alone is breathtaking, with the Homer Tunnel, Egglinton Valley, and the mirror lakes providing scenes of profound beauty. It is impossible to discover completely via any other method than driving there yourself. The road from Te Anau to the sounds takes approximately 2.5 hours, but you’ll want to stop off and take in the views so often it will take at least twice that. Fiordland is also the gateway to the Routeburn, Kepler, and Milford tracks. Three of the greatest and most spectacular multi-day nature tramps around New Zealand. Travel through breathtaking mountainous terrain, across spectacular wild heaths, and along irresistible coastlines.
At the centre of the South Island is the beating heart of it all. The astonishing Mt Cook. Known to the locals as Aoraki, meaning cloud piercer. It is the tallest and most captivating mountain in New Zealand. Towering 3754m above sea level. Mt Cook is home to some of the most rewarding hikes and viewpoints across the country. Both the Hooker Valley and Kea point track provide unbelievable views of the mountains with little effort. Trekking up the 2,000 steps to Sealy Tarns and on to Mueller hut is a little more demanding, but the iconic view of Mt Cook and the surrounding mountains at the end is incomparable. Another natural wonder in the area is the spectacular Tasman Glacier. Which is the largest glacier in New Zealand. Witnessing the icebergs breaking off from the glacier edge and floating among the ethereal milky lake reminds you just how fragile our planet can be. Mt Cook also lies within the Mackenzie dark sky basin, one of the best places in the world to see the magical Milky Way.
To witness New Zealand in all of its glory is a bucket list item for many. Hiring a car through My Car Your Rental brings you one step closer to your dream trip. Get in touch today and let your epic journey begin.