South Island in August with pregnant wife -- what to do?
Replies: 6 - Last Post: Jun 7, 2013 6:51 PM Last Post By: Commissioner
May 2, 2013 8:11 PM
South Island in August with pregnant wife -- what to do?Hi all,
My wife and I are considering a trip from the USA to New Zealand in August 2013. That is the only time she gets off work, so unfortunately it has to be then, which I understand is winter in NZ. She will also be about 5 months' pregnant then. We love to travel and are considering a trip to Australia and New Zealand as our last "big trip" before the arrival of our first child. We figure if we don't hit Oz/NZ now, we won't be able to visit for about 20 years!
Because it will be August and she will be pregnant, we are concerned that there won't be much for us to do or see on the South Island. We love natural beauty, hiking, and skiing (we routinely travel to Switzerland and Colorado), but obviously with a 5-month pregnant wife, most strenuous activities are out, especially skiing. And we do not want to get ourselves into a situation where we're so remote that if something goes wrong and she needs medical attention, we're hours away from civilization. Relatedly, because it will be winter, we are not keen on doing our own driving since we'll be very unfamiliar with the roads; if there were shuttles or buses available to get to certain locations, that would be preferable.
So my question is: what can we see or do on the South Island that would be worth our while in August, is not too strenuous for a pregnant woman, and isn't too far from civilization for first-timers? This may be a lot to ask, but even just going up a gondola to an observation deck could be worth it for the views. Or maybe if there was a place that had non-strenuous hikes with great views and not too much snow, that also is a possibility. Does anyone have any suggestions? Thank you!
May 3, 2013 6:15 AM
1The South Island is at it's best in winter. The scenery is fantastic, there will be plenty to see and lots of things to do. I would look for cheap flights to get between most of your destinations. There's also the TranzAlpine train. There are buses and I understand they have quite good coverage (try intercity buses and the naked bus for timetables and routes) but I haven't used them and I don't think I'd want to be using them if I was 5 months pregnant and needed to pee every five minutes. Consider basing yourself in a few places and doing day trips from there. Queenstown, Nelson and Te Anau are a few places that come to mind immediately. It depends on how long you have.
You're unlikely to ever be hours away from medical help.
May 3, 2013 10:26 AM
2it is now May so your wife is only just pregnant and has no idea how she will feel later on. How fit is she now? The middle trimester is supposed to be the easiest though. Make sure you are ok for insurance. Queenstown is actually a relatively small place and the nearest big hospital is Invercargill, two hours away.
BTW NZ is a great destination with older kids who like walking, so don't imagine you won't be able to come back for 20 years.
May 3, 2013 2:07 PM
3First baby, she shouldnt be enormous at 20 weeks. But as hereandtherenz says, the need to p e e (someone didnt like the word so probably end up as double post) could over ride everything..Intercity and Naked Bus buses are reasonably comfortable but neither have loos on board.
But if I was her, I'd want to carry on with life as normal for as long as possibly possible, something I did with mine.
May 5, 2013 3:18 AM
I had my first baby only 4 months ago, and travelled (just to Melbourne) when I was 7 months pregnant and was fine, just got tired after walking all day :) my husband and I went to New Zealand on a cruise- I must say this was a brilliant way to travel and see so much of the country, with no fuss or stress as all meals and accomodation is included, so you also have very little unexpected costs!
In terms of the south island, obviously there is queenstown which is incredible, and if you can cruise Milford sound, please do so!!!
Another little great that not many people know of is the otago railway at Dunedin, it's a beautifully scenic rail trip! In Dunedin there is also the Cadbury chocolate factory, a bit of a tourist trap, but it is a bit of fun!!
Hope this helps,
Jun 7, 2013 10:54 AM
5Don´t forget that you can also travel with children - no need to think you won´t get anywhere just because you get a child and particular NZ is very childfriendly.
There is a post on the forum "kids to go" where some TT members have listed all the places they have travelled with their little ones.
Jun 7, 2013 6:51 PM
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