I’ve been talking about adding adventure to my life, and this was another fun way I got to do that this year! I love trains, so when one of my friends suggested we travel down to Wellington for a writing conference by train, I was all in.
It was with a group of author friends, and it’s a journey that takes about eight hours down the length of the North Island of New Zealand.
It was a cold and rainy day in Hamilton as we boarded the train, but as soon as we met the others (who’d travelled from Auckland) we found our seats and settled in to enjoy the ride. The large windows next to our seats showed off the rolling North Island countryside to advantage, and we were very soon out of the bad weather and into sunnier climes, with lush forest, rolling paddocks of sheep, and even craggy canyons and fast-moving rivers. When we weren’t watching the scenery, we were catching up with old friends, and talking about books, reading and all things writing!
In a word: bliss.
We also did writing sprints, checked out the food carriage and went onto the open air carriage at the end, which was actually my favourite place on the train. It’s freezing cold. because you get buffeted by the strong winds from the speed of the train, and the scenery moves by too fast to see anything, but it’s the most invigorating place to be because of all that.
If you’re thinking about doing the Northern Explorer train ride in New Zealand, I highly recommend it! (It’s also an awesome place to write a novel…. Just saying.)