Wherever you go in the world, you see backpackers. Carrying their world with them, like a tortoise carries its home! These travellers embody the spirit of adventure.

The Popular Image of the Backpacker

After a long trip on an overnight, or the hop on hop off buses, a backpacking traveller may look a bit worn around the edges and in need of sleep, but they are crazy about adventures in new places and make a big impact on travel and tourism in New Zealand.

We didn’t realise, because we live here, how much of a difference these visitors make, until someone had the brilliant idea of doing a survey to find out who, what and where these brave souls ventured! Thank you Tourism New Zealand!

Lake Pukaki – location of Laketown in The Hobbit. © Miles Holden.

Discovering the Habits of the Backpacker

What impact backpackers make on New Zealand and its people?

  • Backpackers make up 10% of New Zealand’s holiday arrivals – that’s 195,000 people!
  • Backpackers contribute 14% of international visitor spending ($904m)
  • On average backpackers visit 4 or more regions. More than any other visitor manages. Go backpackers.
  • Backpackers contribute a whopping 19% of stay days. (That’s staying here doing stuff days)
  • A backpackers average length of stay is 29 days which is nearly a whole month!

Weta Workshop Building

Backpackers Plan Ahead!

When a traveller comes this far they have often done a lot of research online, and they take notice of what their friends recommend too. Social media plays a big part of helping people decide who goes where! Some adopt no worry tourism packages, and others adopt a nature friendly eco-tourism route – everyone, like you, will visit to discover new and amazing things.

  • If you come to visit us at the Dash Kitten Crew, make sure you plan ahead to make the most of every day here. Going back around the globe to the USA this is just what we did when we visited BlogPaws® and Arizona!
Trolls at Weta Cave, Miramar, Wellington, New Zealand
Cave Trolls from The Hobbit film. © Marjorie Dawson

Lord of the Rings Destinations for Everyone!

Many backpackers who visit New Zealand have a Lord of the Rings itinerary planned with their dream destinations sitting alongside a bungee jump or a canyon swing. They will visit MataMata (Hobbiton) and many of the fantastic locations used by Peter Jackson in the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit movies.

We are also lucky because we can show visitors locations nearby like Kaitoke where the Rivendell sequences were shot, and our favourite venue Weta Workshop. Our own Window on Weta visit report is here although you will need to visit yourself for the real magic.

So, the next time you look at that fearless traveller carrying a heavy backpack, they might be on their way to visit New Zealand, coming to explore this amazing country. Backpackers and fearless travellers make a big difference to our country with their adventuring spirit and they will always be welcome.

Can we hope to see you one day?

Miranda Kitten
Backpackers Adventure Report
Miranda Kitten Image





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  1. Seville at Nerissa's Life

    November 7, 2017 at 5:01 am

    That’s a LOT of peeps backpackin’ through New Zealand! MOUSES! Who would have known there’d be so many. purrs


  2. mommakatandherbearcat

    October 25, 2017 at 10:06 am

    A new place to add to my list of places to visit. The pictures you shared are stunning! Oddly enough, I saw the Lord of The Rings movies for the first time a couple months ago. But there’s so many non-related places in New Zealand to explore … I would love to visit! The Department of Tourism should thank you!
    mommakatandherbearcat recently posted…Dweeble Dumb and Dweeble DumberMy Profile


  3. Marv

    October 25, 2017 at 4:07 am

    When I was young, I wanted to backpack around New Zealand. Now that I am old, I think I want to hire a car…
    I LOVE the new blog look. I found the sliders disconcerting and hard to find the most current post! Kudos to the change!


  4. 15andmeowing

    October 24, 2017 at 1:09 pm

    That is interesting. I am too lazy to backpack 🙂


    • Dash Kitten

      October 24, 2017 at 8:04 pm

      I think I might be too Miss Ellen, but they do and see so much these backpackers – amazing!


  5. Charles Huss

    October 24, 2017 at 3:04 am

    I would love to plan a backpacking trip there but my wife won’t do it.


    • Dash Kitten

      October 24, 2017 at 7:52 am

      Their packs look so heavy to me but they go everywhere and do everything!!


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