To Kim and Leigh-Ann
We were so thrilled to work with Ahipara on this holiday. We picked them because they worked exclusively with New Zealand, and because they specialized in one-on-one experiences, and they certainly didn’t disappoint. Their knowledge of the country and attention to every detail was exceptional.
Ahipara worked with us from the start to craft an itinerary that fit with our (fairly short) schedule and which reflected the kind of travel experiences we wanted. They were wonderful at being able to create a trip that stayed within our budget, keeping those things that we most valued and offering alternate suggestions and choices in areas where we could save money. Across the board, their hotel suggestions were beautiful. Their picks were just right for us – luxurious, but also small and personal with incredible service. Ahipara obviously has wonderful relationships with the hotels they work with as we had rooms with incredible views everywhere we went.
From the very first day when we checked into our starting hotel and received a handwritten letter and welcome package from Ahipara we knew we were in good hands. We stayed in eight hotels in 14 days and met up with countless tour guides, travel companies, airlines, and transfers on our journey. Despite all of the moving parts, everything ran seamlessly. All of our transfers were on time and our schedule well managed. Everyone we encountered knew where we had to be and when. We could tell that Ahipara put extraordinary thought into communicating with all of the hotels and guides who brought us along. This allowed us to relax into our trip – we never worried about calling anyone to confirm our next day’s activity. Everything ran like clockwork and we felt that Ahipara was looking out for us every step of the way.
The main thing that we valued in Ahipara was their relationships with extraordinary, meaningful experiences and tour guides. Some of the experiences they set us up with were truly amazing, and ones that we would not have encountered on our own. Our day spent with Tom Loughlin of Kai Waho, was a true highlight, an unforgettable time spent learning about Maori cooking and culture on Maori lands. Another was our day on the Tasman Glacier with Southern Alps Guiding led by Charlie and Ant. Initially, the weather was not cooperating with us to go up to the glacier on the helicopter, but it made the day all the more memorable when it did happen. The experience with this small company run by true mountaineers was truly authentic. Ahipara was on call with us throughout the day and helped rearrange travel plans to accommodate our weather-related schedule change. We also loved our wine tasting day with Mick from Prestige Adventure. One of the primary reasons we came to New Zealand was to taste in different wine regions. We so appreciated that Ahipara set us up with a sommelier for this experience, Mick’s knowledge and love for the industry elevated the day.
We are so pleased to have done our trip with Ahipara and would highly recommend them!
Ted Faiella & Lindsay Bosch