Lakestone Lodge, New Zealand

Lakestone Lodge, New Zealand

From the lodge living room and dining room common area (and from my room) the views of Lake Pukaki and the mountains were impressive. Aoraki Mount Cook (one of the country’s most iconic mountains) was under cloud cover during my entire stay, making it impossible for me to gaze at the naked peak. Despite that I enjoyed my stay in large part thanks to its picture perfect direct lake and mountain views.

Auckland, New Zealand

Auckland, New Zealand

Perched midway up New Zealand’s North Island on a narrow isthmus of rolling hills between two major bodies of water, Auckland is a city resolutely focused on the sea. On its eastern coast, the Hauraki Gulf leads to the South Pacific Ocean, while its western side overlooks the Tasman Sea. This privileged seaside location has fostered in Aucklanders a long-standing love affair with the sea.