Travel New Zealand: Jeremy Foster of travelFREAK

Travel New Zealand

At last! We have ourselves a New Zealand interview, thanks to the dish that is Jeremy Foster of travelFREAK. I (Kiri) just returned from seven months in Kiwiland and Mr Foster managed to see a hell of a lot more than me. This interview makes me want to go back even more. With a daringly gun-ho attitude towards whipping out his man business for full monty bungee jumps and a penchant for fine wine, what’s not to love about him? 

1. Could you briefly introduce yourself, your site and your experience travelling in New Zealand?

I’m Jeremy Foster, the man behind, a site featuring inspired stories for the curious traveler. I’ve been traveling solo for three years now, and I haven’t looked back, ever since I booked that one way ticket to Australia at the beginning of 2010!

Rather than focusing solely on specific information about destinations, travelFREAK likes to showcase peoples’ experiences in different locations so that readers can decide if it’s the type of experience they might be interested in. Travel is transformative, and travelFREAK aims to highlight the best of mind-expanding life-experiences.

New Zealand has become one of my favorite places in the world! The scenery is unmatched and the kiwi hospitality is one-of-a-kind (read: Hitch-Hiking New Zealand: The Adventure). I spent 15 months traveling, living and working all over the country, and I’ve gotten to know both islands very well.

Travel New Zealand

Travel New Zealand: Jeremy in Kiwi wine country

2. What made you choose this country and what were your first impressions?

I had just spent a year in Australia and, when my visa expired, I had two options: I could either spend $2000 on a flight home to Boston or $150 for a flight to New Zealand. My decision was pretty easy to make!

My first impression was of Queenstown, the adventure capital of the world, and the backpacker capital of New Zealand. To be perfectly frank, I wasn’t fully impressed. You can jump off bridges, out of planes and off of mountains, and the scenery is remarkable, but there is so much to see outside of Queenstown that many travelers miss out on entirely. Queenstown, after 8pm, is a drunken backpackers dream, but after getting drunk with backpackers for more than a year straight, I was looking for something else. It’s a wonderful place, but the hidden gems of New Zealand are really where its charm lies.

3. How much money can someone travel around New Zealand for? What are the greatest expenses? What things are relatively cheap?

New Zealand is not a cheap country to travel through. Even the residents know it’s expensive, but they don’t mind—they figure it’s the price they have to pay for living in such a beautiful place.

Accommodation will be the biggest expense, but there is a very good way around it! Rent a campervan and drive around New Zealand, sleeping on the mattress in the back. They come with everything you need (except a shower) and you’ll save on transportation and accommodation costs by combining everything into one!

It’s also worth looking into vehicle relocation options. Many car rental companies need their vehicles moved across the country, and they’ll give you the car for free, as long as you get it to the final destination within a determinate period of time.

4. What is the local cuisine like? Did you find yourself trying new things or pining for the familiars of home?

Sheep outnumber people by 4-to-1 in New Zealand, so lamb is a very popular dish. Luckily, it’s also one of my favorite things to eat! The agriculture in New Zealand is unspoilt and most of the meat is organic. Order your lamb rare and enjoy the best cut of meat you’ve ever had. It’s completely safe to eat uncooked meat here and many people eat their lamb completely raw! New Zealand lamb is universally known as the best in the world.

Travel New Zealand

Travel New Zealand: travelFREAK

5. What cultural activities and events would you suggest everyone seeing or taking part in while travelling in New Zealand and why?

I think it’s important to learn about the history and culture of every country you visit. The Maori’s are a fascinating people and it’s worth getting to know their values and way of life. There are many opportunities to do so, as they can be found everywhere throughout the country. If you’re traveling through, look into local events or gatherings and get yourself involved. At the very least, speak with them! The Maori’s are very friendly people.

6. What is your favourite thing about travelling this country? What is your least favourite thing?

The scenery! It’s stunning, and unlike anything I’ve ever seen. New Zealand is so unique and the landscape varies greatly, from the mountainous South Island to the rocky east coast of the North Island, to the beachy far, far north!

My least favorite thing about traveling New Zealand is the cost. It’s pricey, but it’s definitely worth it.

Travel New Zealand

Travel New Zealand: travelFREAK

7. What things do you focus on most when you blog about this country? Why do you choose these things?

New Zealand is its own little paradise. I love to showcase how, in so many ways, New Zealand is so paradisaical. From the wines to the adventures, I’ve covered it all.

8. What’s one thing you can’t travel around New Zealand without?

A thirst for adventure (and wine!). From bungy jumping to glaciers to insane hiking options, New Zealand is the adventure junkie’s dream. A trip to NZ feels like you’re taking a big gulp from the cup of life. To top it off, New Zealand wine is world renowned, so prep that palette and get drinkin’!

9. What kind of response have you had to your blogs about New Zealand? What post had the most interest?

I’ve had a very positive response to my articles about The Land of the Long White Cloud, and am on board with numerous other publications as a resident contributor for New Zealand.

One of my most popular articles covered my naked (yes, full monty) bungy jump in Queenstown, New Zealand. Somehow, the cute girls at the counter talked me into it. The guys, however, were not as happy to see another man’s bits first thing in the morning, though (read: Bungy Jumping Naked in Queenstown, NZ).

Travel New Zealand

Travel New Zealand: Jeremy’s full monty bungee

10. If you could think of one thing you wished someone told you before you started travelling in New Zealand what would it be?

“Prepare yourself!” New Zealand is my beloved little corner of the earth, and it has changed me immeasurably. The friends and family that I gained in New Zealand, along with the direction of my life expanding, have steered me towards discovering (and getting) what I really want out of the world.

No place, except New Zealand, could have done that for me.

Wow, what an impression this beautiful country has had on him. Thanks Jeremy.

For more of his adventures go over to travelFREAK. He’s on Facebook and Twitter too.

Been to a country you want to rave about? Have some travel blogging tips to share with our community? Contact us for an interview





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One Response to “Travel New Zealand: Jeremy Foster of travelFREAK”

  1. Anthony says:

    Choice bro, I’ve been to NZ a few times and loved it there. Pretty laid back, compact and lots to see and do.
    Anthony recently posted..Air Crash Investigations (Mayday) – ‘Funniest’ Accident EpisodesMy Profile


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