With the advent of aircraft and cars, many people believe that trains have become an archaic relic, left over from a bygone era. However, the train is far from dead. For those in GP jobs in New Zealand, the train offers a great way to explore the country at an enjoyable pace.
With around 4,000 km of rail, bridges, tunnels and viaducts to choose from, the rail experience in New Zealand is one of the best ways to see all that New Zealand has to offer. With this in mind, here are two rail adventures for the expat locum doctor.
1. TranzAlpine – Christchurch to Greymouth
When expats think of New Zealand, their thoughts tend to drift to mist covered mountains and epic glaciers. While the Lord of the Rings trilogy has spread this vision throughout the world, you cannot fault Sir Peter Jackson – New Zealand is truly majestic.
One of the best ways to get a view of some of the spectacular scenery that has influenced people around the world is through the TranzAlpine rail journey. Beginning in Christchurch, doctors can explore this Garden City by taking a stroll along the beautiful Avon river or if you are after a more romantic form of transport, glide along the tranquil water in one of the city's iconic punting boats.
Once you are ready to hop on board the world-famous locomotive, the journey will take you from the fertile dairy farms of the Canterbury Plains to the mighty peaks of the Southern Alps. The spectacular views are only heightened by the excitement and suspense created by the narrow corridors, which open into spectacular views of the region's rugged alpine landscape.
Once you arrive at Greymouth, the potential for adventure only increases as it is close to a number of natural attractions. From the spectacular Franz Josef Glacier or simply relax and take in the scenery with a Monteith's Original Brew – a west coast brewery dating back 150 years.
2. The Northern Explorer – Auckland to Wellington
Ever since Maori first discovered Aotearoa New Zealand, the North Island has been the island of choice for both local communities and European immigrants. So when doctors make their way to New Zealand, it is essential that they explore, enjoy and discover everything the north has to offer.
Boarding at the Auckland Strand Station in the CBD, an expat doctor will travel from the bustling metropolis through hills of rolling green, country towns and along rugged coastlines. However, the greatest drawcard for doctors in search of the quintessential Kiwi experience will be the three volcanoes you pass on the way.
Travelling along the volcanic plateaus, riders will experience three distinct volcanic mountains: Ruapehu, Tongariro and Nguruhoe. While Mt Ruapehu is the highest peak in the North Island, with its only continuous skifield, and Tongariro is known for its distinctive three craters, Mt Ngauruhoe is typically unknown to visitors.
Yet this geological gem is crowned with a perfectly formed crater and is up there with the likes of Mt Fuji and the Arenal Volcano. Doctors traveling on the Northern Explorer will be greeted with a spectacular view of this volcanic cone as they travel towards their destination.
With the fast paced nature of contemporary life, taking the train to see some of the most spectacular scenery the world has to offer is an attractive proportion. From the pleasant meandering of the great Canterbury plains to the jaw-dropping sites of Mt Ngauruhoe's spectacular cone, New Zealand's rail trips have it all.
If you would like to know how you can transform your fantasies into real life experiences, talk to the consulting experts at Ochre Recruitment today.