Pacific Island Books

New Zealand Travel and Local Guides 3

[Previous Page] [Next Page] [Up] [Home Page] [Mail] [Contents]

New Zealand Travel and Local Guides 3

Place to Stay, A : Hotels of New Zealand photography by Grant Sheehan, text by Shelley-Maree Cassidy. Published by Phantom Press. ISBN 0958238820. Recommended retail price $24.95.

Deciding where to stay is one of the most important parts of planning a trip away. Whether you live here or are planning to visit New Zealand, the hotels in A Place to Stay will be an essential resource in making your choice.

Modest or grand, large or small, modern or traditional, the only things these places have in common is that each is a one-off, original, and full of character. And of course all of them are right here in one country. In
A Place To Stay – Hotels of New Zealand, you will find a wide range of choices to suit most tastes. From the luxury Lodge and Golf Course at Kaun Cliffs, in the far North, as far South as the ‘misty mountains’ of Fiordland and the back-to-nature Takaro Lodge, and many other places between, there is sure to be somewhere that appeals and inspires.

This book is a photographic celebration of some of New Zealand’s most interesting ‘homes away from home’ and a record of the diverse and often impressive landscapes that surround them. Reviewing Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings, one movie critic wrote, ”if locations were awarded Oscars, New Zealand would scoop the lot.” The country is already renowned for its scenery, its Maori culture, and its artistic cultural and sporting achievements. The tranquility of our open spaces is an increasingly precious commodity in a troubled world.

New Zealand has been praised for both its exhilarating and relaxing outdoor activities. Now it has a growing and deserved reputation for its cuisine. There are many great places to stay, things to see and do, and places to eat. Those of us who live here can be proud of that. Those who come here to visit will find welcoming hosts and all the ingredients to make their time her both enjoyable and memorable. Soft cover, 207 pages. Published in 2003.

Queenstown to Milford: “A View From the Road” by Paddy Ryan, Recommended retail price $5.00.

Queenstown to Milford is a souvenir guide to what is arguably New Zealand’s most scenic drive. It highlights interesting historical and scenic features along the way and finishes with a look at Milford Sound itself, which is dominated by Mitre Peak, described by Rudyard Kipling as the eighth wonder of the world. Also included is a map of Queenstown and numerous discount vouchers to the area. Paddy immodestly described this as “superbly” photographed in the Pacific Island Books wholesale catalog. Soft cover, 32 pages.

Rolling Thunder: The Spirit of Karekare by Bob Harvey. Published by Exisle Publishing. ISBN 0908988176. Recommended retail price $29.95. Winner Environment Section 2002 Montana Book Awards.

What is it that draws us back again and again to those special places that haunt our memory and are like a magnet to our soul? Perhaps partly because of its spectacular landscape, New Zealand has an abundance of such places. For author Bob Harvey it's Karekare Beach on Auckland's 'untamed coast'...

"Karekare is not for those who prefer safe landscapes. There's an overpowering sense of place here. The moment you arrive, you know this is a special place. You either like it instantly, or you're out of here fast, never to return. Stay, and your senses start picking up a myriad of sensations. At the carpark, you can hear the booming surf. It comes at you like rolling thunder, echoing off the valley walls and pushing into your ears. The great, gnarled face of the Watchman keens the sound and sends it hurling towards you as you jump the creek before heading towards the beach. Do this at night, and the beach amplifies pure sound, picking up bass chords from the collision of waves against Paratahi Island and sampling the shoreline surf action on the way in."

Rolling Thunder is the successor to Bob Harvey's bestselling 1998 book Untamed Coast, but where that book took the form of a jaunt through the Waitakere Ranges and up the coast to the Kaipara, this time the journey is more inward, an exploration of the spiritual, social and aristic responses to a particular spot on the planet. Karekare may have become famous as the location for The Piano and numerous other feature films, television series, fashion shoots and recorded music, but the individual response is always intensely personal:

"Beyond the headland,, the wide, wild spaces of the coastline to the Manukau Heads open out before you. People become specks against the horizon along these reaches. Karekare and its stretch of coast offers up to me unexpected gifts. One day a seahorse skeleton, another, a lost doll. A lone leopard seal in winter, perhaps sick or old. And the tragic surprise of a beached whale. Here, I never feel like a visitor; I know that I belong to this place and time. Everything seems to fit here in my life, and probably it's the same for other Karekare people. These days, I may have quietened down a little, but I refuse to snuff out the spark this place has given me. It burns within me, part of the universe of fiery stars and comets. This place demands homage and participation. Karekare is not for the passive."

Generously illustrated with works by leading artists including Gretchen Albrecht, Dean Buchanan, Peter Siddell and Stanley Palmer, this book also presents a selection of work from leading photographers, from the 19th century to the present day.

Bob Harvey was born and educated in Auckland, and spent three decades building and running one of New Zealand's largest advertising agencies, which he sold in 1991. Since then he has been elected Mayor of Waitakere City three times. In 1998, on behalf of the city, he was awarded the UNESCO Cities for Peace Prize for the Asia-Pacific region. He is a member of the New Zealand Film Commission and is a former President of the New Zealand Labour Party. An active surf lifesaver, runner and swimmer, he has been a Karekare weekend resident for more than 40 years. Bob Harvey is the bestselling author of Untamed Coast: Auckland's Waitakere Ranges and West Coast Beaches (Exisle, 1998), a finalist in the Montana New Zealand Book Awards.

Top Walking Tracks of the Wellington Region by Geoffrey Churchman. Published by IPL Transpress. ISBN 0908876939.Recommended retail price $6.95.

The magnificence of Wellington's scenery as viewable from 17 of the region's best walkways is presented in this all-color souvenir guidebook.
The book gives practical details, and a summary history and description of each walk. In total there are 49 superb color photos and a color map. Soft cover, 48 pages.

Tramping in New Zealand by Jim DuFresne. Published by Lonely Planet Publications. ISBN 1-74059-234-4. Recommended retail price $19.99.

Jim DuFresne is a US based outdoor and travel writer. He’s written 15 outdoor and wilderness/travel books so when he tells you that he spends a summer tramping in New Zealand (backpacking to you North Americans) whenever he can, that tells you something about the beauty of the country. New Zealand packs some incredible scenery into its relatively small land area and much of this is only accessible by leaving the black top and walking. This Lonely Planet guide gives you the where, when and how. Soft cover, 385 pages. Published in 2002.


Untamed Coast - Auckland's Waitakere Ranges and West Coast Beaches
by Bob Harvey. Published by Exisle Publishing. Recommended retail price $24.95.

Untamed Coast by popular Waitakere Mayor, Bob Harvey, was an instant hit when it was published. Now in its third reprinting, the 208 page book was a finalist in the prestigious Montana Book Awards and remained in the New Zealand best-seller lists for weeks. The book describes in loving detail the area alluded to in the title. Harvey's quirky humor shines through and one is constantly aware of the stories he isn't telling on the grounds he may incriminate himself and his equally crazy friends. This man has seen life. The book is enhanced by innumerable color photos (I gave up counting when got to 300), most by Ted Scott. This book is a must for any expat kiwis out there or folk wishing to see behind the postcards on their visit to kiwiland. Soft cover, 208 pages.

Click here for reviews

Visitor’s Guide New Zealand: Itineraries for Routing & Exploring by Grant Bourne and Sabine Körner-Bourne. Recommended retail price $18, our price $12 (see newsletter for new offer).

With the motorist or independent traveler in mind, Visitor’s Guide New Zealand guides through both main islands along routes carefully chosen for their scenic or historic interest. Explore untouched rain forests, discover lonely beaches of golden sand: whether you want to bungy jump off a bridge in Queenstown or enjoy a traditional Maori feast in Rotorua this book provides the key.

Included are 14 separate and well-planned itineraries for routing and exploring New Zealand. Full color maps show clearly the suggested itineraries and main places of interest. Further information files at the end of each chapter includes phone numbers, addresses and opening times of all places of interest mentioned in the text. An extensive fact file gives information on climate, currency, entertainment, shopping and souvenirs and much more. Soft cover, 240 pages.

walking the Abel tasman thumbnail

Walking the Abel Tasman Coast Track by Philip Holden. ISBN 1869588150. Recommended retail price $12.95. Published by Hodder Moa Beckett.

Every year almost 30,000 hikers of all ages experience the beauty of the internationally-famous Cost Track in the Abel Tasman National Park.

Walking the Abel Tasman Coast Track is a useful guide for day-trippers and overnight hikers alike.  It briefly outlines the history of the coastline, then follows the track through a changing landscape of golden beaches, estuaries, coves and stands of native forest.  The book also features the varied flora and birdlife along the track, and provides helpful details on types of accommodation, sea-transport options and suitable gear.  Illustrated with color photography throughout, this book will be an indispensable guide as well as a lasting keepsake of one of the most stunning walks in New Zealand.

Philip Holden is one of New Zealand’s most successful writers on the outdoors.  Once a professional hunter, he now writes full-time.  Through his Station Country series, he gained a reputation as a landscape photographer.  His most recent books include Walking the Routeburn Track and 50 Great Farmstays in New Zealand. Soft cover, 64 pages. Published in 2000.

walking the Roueburn Track thumbnail

Walking the Routeburn Track by Philip Holden.  ISBN 1869587634. Recommended retail price $12.95. Published by Hodder Moa Beckett.

The Routeburn Track, which crosses the main divide of the Southern Alps to the north-west of Queenstown, is one of the most popular walking tracks in New Zealand.  Each season more than 10,000 trampers follow the 39-kilometre trail, which is normally tackled over three days.

Walking the Routeburn Track follows the track as it winds through an unsurpassed range of mountain environments – luxuriant rainforests, tundra-like scrublands, dramatic alpine peaks and lovely river flats.  Discover the history of this famous track and learn about the fascinating flora and fauna that you will encounter along the way.

For anyone planning to take on the challenge of the walk, this book will be an invaluable guide as well as a treasured memento.

Philip Holden is one of New Zealand’s most successful and prolific writer on the outdoors.  His previous books have earned him a loyal following among readers of all ages.  Once a professional hunter, he now is a full-time writer living in Queenstown. Soft cover, 64 pages. Published in 2000.


Walking the Milford Track by Rosalind Harker. Recommended retail price $12.95. Published by Hodder Moa Beckett.

The Milford Track in Fiordland National Park is a four day walk of diverse beauty, with lakes, rivers, waterfalls, snow-capped mountains, alpine flowers, ferns and forests (and sandflies). This informative guide will help walkers gain the most from their experience with details on bird and plant life that walkers will encounter, a history of the track and full colour photographs. Walking the Milford Track is an ideal guide and souvenir of an incomparable wilderness adventure.

Rosalind Harker is a biologist with a degree in Applied Sciences. She developed an early taste for the outdoors during her childhood on a farm. She gained a detailed knowledge of the Milford track after spending three summers running one of the huts. She has recently returned to her interest in biology, leading special interest nature, birding and garden tours in New Zealand and Australia for overseas groups. Soft cover, 64 pages.

Wellington: A Capital Century by David McGill.   ISBN 0-908876-19-X.  Published by IPL Transpress. Recommended retail price $36.95.

From Victorian teaparties to New Zealand's Top Town this book is the complete history of Wellington during the 20th Century.

War, Depression, Riot, Earthquake, Demolition and Restoration - the story of the harbor city is as vigorous as the winds that swirl through its streets. The capital has always been a magnet for movers and shakers like controversial mayors Michael Fowler and Fran Wilde, national politicians King Dick Seddon and Peter Fraser, visionary exhibition designer Edmund Anscombe, pioneering transsexual Carmen and film director Peter Jackson, personalities at the forefront of the surge from Victorian teaparty town to the country's most cosmopolitan city.

In 1900 Wellington was a scruffy little town with no civic center. This book traces Wellington's surge from dull Victorian days to the present entertainment and lifestyle hub of the country. Several outstanding civic leaders -- with a few duds in between -- drove the capital to recognition by an Auckland magazine as the country's top 21st millennium town. It was an almighty struggle, with many of the country's cultural, political and civic tensions played out in their most concentrated form in the few square kilometres of this harbor city. A culture of political interference by politicians passing through and the bureaucratic lethargy, indifference and in recent times corruption had to be confronted, along with the 1980s body blow of the public service infrastructure cut out of the city. Like successful surgery, the removal of this grey blight allowed the city to finally put its houses in order, a breezy and beautiful harbor city emerging from under this stifling fog, inspiring its rich and compact cultural mix of citizens to establish the most innovative and creative lifestyles in the country.

This century of struggle is brought to life by the personalities both involved in and observing the city's emergence:

· Old Wellington chronicler Pat Lawlor recreates the fighting in Wellington between 'swaddies' and pro-Boers, the opening of the Victorian town hall that gave the city a center and a catalyst for change, the city slums and the socialist agitators, King Dick Seddon the politician and King Dick the lion, the bubonic plague kept at bay and the mysterious man calling for help in the new sewer system that replaced the night cart.

· Charles Norwood is remembered for the Lady Norwood Rose Garden, but this is the story of how he turned a venal and dangerously unhealthy milk delivery system into a model exported round the world.

· Pat Lawlor and other reporters provide eyewitness accounts of the 1932 rioting that left smashed shopwindows through central Wellington and a gun holding back crowds attacking Whitcombe and Tombs shop in Lambton Quay.

This book is a continuous commentary from Pat Lawlor's childhood investigating Katherine Mansfield's Thorndon, the sighting of the country's first car and the wreck of the Penguin. The story moves through the grim times of Depression and earthquake and war, waterfront strike and rebellious youth, the better days of test matches at the Basin and Athletic Park and street festivals, the worst day of the Wahine wreck. The modern era saw Wellington the proving ground for the mixed blessings of public housing, a motorway through the heritage heart of the city prompting the country's preservation movement to fight rampant progress. This climaxed in the demolition frenzy of the 80s, the stalemate of preservationists and progressives failing to destroy the Michael Fowler Centre and the old town hall. The result was both structures combining to make Wellington the cultural capital of the country.

Many of the pristine pictures of developing Wellington have not been seen before, including fold-out panoramas as only the old plate photographers could make them, of beach and city vistas, culled from Wellington City archives, the Museum of Wellington City and Sea and the Alexander Turnbull Library. Appeals to the public have also yielded personal images of the way we were in war and peace, offering one of the most comprehensive records of any 20th century city.

Some 400 historic big photos, including 100 in color. Hard cover 325 pages, published in 2003.

Westland Foothills & Forests: A Walking and Tramping Guide by Pat Barrett. ISBN 1877251283. Published by Shoal Bay Press. Recommended retail price $28.95

The towering mountains, ancient glaciers, primeval forests and wild beaches of Westland are legendary and exploring the region is an adventure in stark contrasts. It offers the climber, tramper or explorer a wide range of experiences, from alpine routes for the serious climber to gentle tracks suitable for the whole family – some through places of historical interest and all through areas of great natural beauty.

n this book Pat Barrett, author of Canterbury Foothills & Forests, brings together his extensive tramping and climbing experience and his skills as a superb photographer to provide a guide to all the marked walking tracks, huts and recognized tramping routes of the region, many of which have never before been documented in this form. All the longer walks in the book can be completed in a day or a long weekend and are within the scope of most averagely fit trampers. Every route is graded (from easy to super-hard) with an estimate of the walking time involved.

Other details include access information (including phone numbers for landowners where applicable), descriptions of the best route available, and notes on the attractions of the particular track/peak, the weather and terrain, and equipment you’ll need to carry. The magnificent scenery of Westland is not simply to be admired: this book will help you experience it first hand for yourself.
Soft cover, 160 pages. Published in 2004.

Wild at Heart ... the South Island's West Coast by Paddy Ryan. Recommended retail price $14.95.

This was the first in Exisle Publishing's "New Zealand behind the postcards" series. It celebrates the diversity of people, flora, fauna and scenery in this rugged beautiful region. It is profusely illustrated. If you intend to tour New Zealand a visit to the West Coast is a must and so is this book. Soft cover. 72 pages.

Click here for reviews

Click here for photos from Wild at Heart

Wild Walks: Sixty Short North Island Walks by Mark Pickering. Published by Shoal Bay Press.
ISBN 0908704410. Recommended retail price $19.95.

New Zealand's North Island has an astonishing variety of natural habitats, and many of them are within easy walking distance, once you step out of your car. This book describes sixty short, readily accessible walks, from Cape Reinga in the north to Pencarrow Head in the south. In between it explores mangrove swamps, windswept beaches, bubbling hot springs, primeval forests and barren plateaus - all of them accessible to walkers of all ages and levels of fitness.

The commentary on each walk provides a mixture of practical advice, vivid descriptions of the delights in store for the visitor, and fascinating asides about particular historical or natural features of the area. Each is illustrated with superb full-color photographs by Nic Bishop and the author, and clear, easy-to-follow maps.

Mark Pickering has packed a wealth of detail into a compact, easily-carried form: the book is not only a useful guidebook, ideal for the glovebox of your car, but entertaining and informative reading in its own right.

A companion volume to Wild Walks: Sixty Short South Island Walks, this will prove just as popular with New Zealanders and overseas visitors who want to explore the North Island's many wonderful wild places. Soft cover, 168 pages. Published in 1996.

Wild Walks: Sixty Short South Island Walks by Mark Pickering. Published by Shoal Bay Press, 2001. ISBN 0908704267. Recommended retail price $19.95.

The South Island of New Zealand is blessed with wild places, many of them right under our noses. Only a short way from many of the more conventional tourist centers you can visit rainforests, estuaries, granite gorges, beaches, windswept coasts and coastal lagoons, tussock plains and hot springs.

This book describes 60 short walks, each with a landscape feature or wildlife habitat that makes it unique. It is not a book for the dedicated tramper or hiker. It is for the tourist or holidaymaker with an hour or three to spare, who likes to put on his or her walking shoes and take a short stroll into the unspoiled magic of wilderness.

Native wildlife abounds in these ancient and untouched sports; little blue penguins, shags, sealions, Hector's dolphins, kakas, keas, kiwis, kereru, albatrosses … the list goes on. Many are unique to the habitat in which you will see them.

The walks described range from 15 minutes to about 4 hours (return) and are suitable for people of all ages. Location maps and concise directions make them easy to find and follow. Keep Wild Walks in the glovebox of your car; your passport to the South Island's special wild places. Soft cover, 164 pages. Published in 2001.

Click on links below for these books.

Great Escapes: A Guide to Motorcycle Touring in New Zealand by Peter Mitchell

[Previous] New Zealand Travel Two
[Up] New Zealand (Aotearoa)
[Home] Home Page
[Mail] Send E-Mail to Pacific Island Books
[Contents] Pacific Island Books Contents

Thanks for visiting Pacific Island Books

Last modified on Thursday, August 20, 2009