We toured both Islands during Oct/Nov 2008 - my wife having relatives in Palmerston North.
On the South Island at just about every turn we were saying "Wow!!". For mile after mile it must be one of the most beautiful countries on this planet and I'd urge anyone to forget the long flight and just go.
Next year , five years on we're planning to come back but mainly the North Island as we neglected that a bit.
NZ is a landscape photographers dream country. Thanks for the reminder.
ROFL! Sorry, Jun, I meant the ones in which the mountains were clearly centre stage, as opposed to background
Re visiting, I will some day. I spent 3 weeks in a cottage on the shores of Lake Wakatipu (Frankton), views straight across toward the Remarkables and Mt Humboldt as well. I was just so relaxed there, I'd be happy to move there, if I could afford it and I was 20 years younger