New Zealand Awaits
About Us

Our values

Our Mission

New Zealand Awaits’ mission is to provide our guests with exceptional travel experiences that not only enhances their lives, but also the lives of the people in the communities they visit.

Excellent Customer Service

We strive to provide the highest quality experience to our customers through honesty, sincerity, respect and professionalism.


New Zealand has spectacular natural beauty, and it’s our responsibility to do all we can to sustain it for those who come after us, future travellers and future generations. We limit our group tours to 12 travellers, lessening our impact on the environment, and allowing us to work with smaller local operators who value environmental responsibility

Social Responsibility

Supporting local communities and small business owners is extremely important to us. We stay in New Zealand owned and operated lodging wherever possible. We use locally owned and operated activity providers supporting them in sustaining their businesses. In return we receive exceptional experiences with real local people, not anonymous companies.

Who We Are


Debbie Clarke


Like many New Zealanders, my appreciation and love for New Zealand has grown deeply after living and travelling internationally. I’ve lived and taught English in Japan and Hungary, backpacked through inner Mongolia, China, and South East Asia, and hitchhiked through Turkey, Syria, Jordan, and Israel, where I accepted generous invitations from locals to stay in their homes. What a gift it was to travel in those countries and experience that hospitality at a time when it was safe to do so. Those authentic experiences with locals shaped my outlook on life and have driven me to create similar experiences in New Zealand for our guests.

We want you to experience not only the well-known, iconic spots that most tourists visit, but the unknown nooks and crannies where we’ve spent time with family and friends that most tourists never see. I’m fulfilling my lifelong dream of sharing the joy and magic of my homeland with others. It’s a return to my teenage years when I used to pick up foreign hitch-hikers and bring them home to the farm to show them some good kiwi hospitality.


Karen Lang

Tech Guru

I’ve lived in several different countries, but none are as magnificent and spectacular as New Zealand. I first travelled to New Zealand with Debbie back in 2001. I immediately fell in love with the country and the people. I knew one day I’d be living there and sharing Debbie’s dream of helping others experience this stunning country. I feel privileged to get to travel to so many diverse and beautiful parts of New Zealand. My role with New Zealand Awaits is more behind the scenes, working on the administrative side (webpage, bookings etc).


Wendy Hansen

Travel Consultant

I have a love for travel, and have done a lot of travelling both when I was younger with my husband, Neil, and later in life with our three kids. We continue to travel internationally as much as we can, as well as travelling extensively in New Zealand, deepening our knowledge and love for our magnificent country. We’ve ridden most of the multi-day cycle trails in New Zealand, and tramped many of the great walks. We also get out into the less travelled areas to mountain bike and tramp and love sharing that knowledge with our guests. Planning our holidays as well as our clients’ is a passion of mine. I love listening to what a couple or a family wants on holiday, then matching them with the perfect blend of experiences and accommodations that we have available to us in New Zealand.