New Zealand ferry ride
new zealand, travel

The New Zealand ferry experience

As we boarded the ferry, I couldn’t believe how gigantic it was. We drove our rental car onto the boat and just kept driving, and driving and driving! Up a ramp we went as we followed the cars in front of us.

Finally we arrived at a point where a ferry worker was guiding cars into specific lanes to park. I can’t remember how many rows there were, but it was definitely more than the ferry boats I’m used to back home (in Seattle). I’ve never been on a cargo boat, but this felt like it could have been one!

We got out of the car and followed other passengers to the nearest door. At the entryway, another worker was standing and handing out plastic markers that indicated what level of the boat you were parked on. At the stairwell, another worker stood smiling and directed us to go up.

“It’s so organized here!” I thought.

We settled into a spot on one of the several passenger floors next to a window.

“How long is the ride again?” I asked Bryce.

“Three-and-a-half hours,” he replied.

“What?! Really??”

I couldn’t believe that sailing from the North Island to the South Island would take us longer than flying from Seattle to, like, LA!

New Zealand ferry ride

It was lucky we found a “good spot” to post up. We were at a table with chairs and a cafeteria was just around the corner. Oh, and by the window meant we had great views of the voyage!

During our sailing we ate breakfast, did some journaling and I took a nap.

More than once there were announcements over the intercom about a movie that was about to start in the theater. (Yes, there was a movie theater on this ferry!) I’ve never been on a cruise but this sure felt like one! At one point there were ferry workers who were carting around freshly made biscuits for purchase. What service this ferry had!

New Zealand ferry ride

Who would have thought that the ferry ride itself would have been such a fun experience? I did get a bit sea sick on the ferry ride back at the end of our trip … that time we were on a slightly smaller boat and I guess we must have been chartering choppier waters.

I still can’t get over how “cruise-like” that first ferry ride was though. All that was missing was an all-you-can-eat buffet and pool!

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