Here at the Old Countryhouse, we absolutely LOVE winter: the cold season brings the most amazing mountain sceneries and the coolest (pun intended) sports: you can go skiing, snowboarding, ice-skating, hiking and so much more!

However, there is one thing that must be kept in mind: staying warm during the cold season isn’t always easy, especially when travelling and sleeping in a campervan. So here’s our top 5 tips and reminders on how to stay warm when it gets colder: After all, you wouldn’t want a flu to keep you from exploring all of New Zealand’s beautiful mountains, would you?

  1. Head, hands and feet. Those are the #1 parts of your body that should stay warm at all times. This is where the heat comes out so put on your wool hat, gloves and socks and you’ll be ready to go and explore!
  2. Keep your body and your clothes clean and dry. Dry clothes will keep you warm much longer than wet ones (that includes sweaty clothes as well). Change into your PJ’s at night, take frequent showers (yes, even you’re freedom campers!) and get into some new clothes in the morning  every time you feel your clothes are getting a bit humid. Make sure your clothes have time to dry properly before you wear them. This is especially important when sleeping in a car, where your body heat will make the humidity level rise at night.
  3. Move as much as you can! If you get cold, don’t just stay seated: go for a run, go skiing or snowboarding, explore the area: stay active and your body will keep you warm.
  4. When staying at hostels, make sure the one you choose is well equipped for winter; here at the Old Countryhouse, we are happy to offer our guests toasty warm central heating for the cold season, topped up with Spa pool and Sauna facilities. However, having travelled around New Zealand ourselves, we are well aware that not everybody is blessed with such good winter equipment. In fact most houses in New Zealand aren’t as well isolated as what people are used to in North America or Europe. Many hostels will however offer electric blankets and hot water bottles when requested and some even warm up the hostel with a fireplace. Just call and ask!
  5. Treat yourself to a spa day. New Zealand has some amazing Spa Pool resorts all around the country: From the Hot Springs in Rotorua up North to Hanmer Springs and Lake Tekapo on the South Island, you will be able to get a day pass at a very affordable price. Just face it: after hiking for days (or not!), you do deserve some time relaxing in hot pools! From Christchurch, our personal favourite is Hanmer Springs: You can easily catch a morning shuttle to the picturesque alpine village, go for a hike and then spend the day in the hot pools, before catching your return shuttle back to our hostel in the evening.

With all those tricks at hand, who is ready to go and explore New Zealand this winter? But we’ll let you in on a secret: Snow only shows itself on top of mountains. The rest of New Zealand doesn’t even get that cold. See you on the ski fields!