Meet our 2021 Kiwi Guide Team
When you travel on one of our small group tours, your MoaTrek Kiwi Guide will be your best friend in New Zealand. From morning till night, this is the person who is at your side helping make your trip one that you will remember for a very long time.
Our Kiwi Guides come from a wide range of backgrounds and life skills, we're very proud of our team and they are some of the most experienced guides in New Zealand. What they all have in common is a passion for New Zealand and sharing it with visitors.
Meet the 2020 guide team below, find out more about them, see some photos of them in action and hear what guests on recent trips have had to say.
Nigel's home is in Tauranga in the North Island and when he's not guiding you'll find him out on the harbour in his boat. He has many years experience guiding in both New Zealand and Australia and his early career included time in the military, so when he says you're leaving at a certain time we notice everyone tends to show up. Nigel's forte is adding personal touches like his famous Kiwi Barbeque on the beach at Punakaiki on the last night of our trip.
Hear what recent guests of Nigel say
Nigel is not only knowledgable but so obviously proud of his country: he’s really funny and works incredibly hard to make sure that everybody has a good time. His local knowledge meant that we saw and discovered things you would never get to see or experience if you were doing your own fly drive. Also he has an admirable level of patience, because of course no two people behave in the same way!
Andrea Boardman, UK, who travelled with Nigel on our 21 Day Kakapo tour in December 2019
Tim de Jong
Tim has more than 25 years experience both guiding and running tours here in New Zealand, with experience in walking, cycling and adventure tours. After running his own business and working as a tour operations manager he is now back in his "happy place", which is at the head of the pack out on the road guiding tours. Originally from the South Island, Tim now lives in the Bay of Plenty where his extended family are.
What recent guests of Tim said
Tim de Jong is an outstanding person. He invited us into New Zealand rather than telling us about it. He has a passion for the ecology, the people, the history and the food. Our trek was definitely enhanced by having Tim as our guide. We became friends over the weeks and we respected his vast knowledge of NZ and its history. Wonderful person.
Bill Farrell, USA, who travelled with Tim on our Kiwi 12 Day Tour in November 2019
Andre's field of expertise is botany and ecology, and after studying this at university he worked as a park ranger and gardener before becoming a full time guide. Ten years on he is loving life out on the road showing the best corners of New Zealand to visitors. You can tell Andre's a true Kiwi because whenever you see a photo of him he's wearing shorts, regardless of the weather!
Hear what guests of Andre have to say
Andre the Guide was phenomenal. I am not sure that I can write down enough superlatives to describe my impression of how much he did for our group. Most excellent young gentleman who cares for his group. He was extremely knowledgable of all the areas that we visited, had an excellent wit and sense of humour and went out of his way to make sure that every detail that he could control to make the trip run smoothly...he did.
Lynn Cindric, Canada. Lynn travlled with Andre on our 21 day Kakapo tour in March 2019.
Helen came to guiding after a career in the public service and ten years in is loving every minute of it. She lives in Christchurch and loves everything the South Island has to offer: walking; cycling and skiing are her favourites. She's guided all over New Zealand and internationally in Europe also and brings her love of exploring new places and cultures to every trip.
Hear what Helen's guests had to say
Helen was GREAT, the standard has been set very high for any other tour that we might do. She was well organised, had the day well planned and looked ahead to avoid any "hiccups". Went out of her way to make sure we all had what we needed.
Ian & Lesley Jones.
Originally from the UK, New Zealand is now Andrew's home. When he's not out on tour you'll find him with his sleeves rolled up working on his properties in Christchurch, where he lives now, or perhaps unwinding at the Yoga studio! Andrew was been a professional tour guide since 2015 and loves being out on the road sharing is favourite spots and stories with visitors.
Read what recent guests of Andrew's said
Andrew’s love of New Zealand, and knowledge about every aspect of what we were observing and experiencing made this trip richly rewarding. He knew when to provide information and observations and when to let the group “rest”. He was attentive, warm and a joy to be with.
Christina Manning & Michael Flynn, USA, who travelled with Andrew on our Kakapo 21 Day Tour over Christmas and New Year 2019/20
Before beginning his guiding life with MoaTrek Graeme worked as a geologist all over the world, so if geology is your thing then you'll love being out on the road with Graeme. He even wrote his thesis on the volcanoes of Tongariro National Park! When he's not out on the road you'll find him working on his property North of Auckland.
Hear what Graeme's guests say
Graeme made our trip memorable. Any problems eg weather were addressed and slight variations made to ensure our holiday ran smoothly. We knew we were in safe hands even when the weather turned for the worst.
Richard is a born and bred South Islander, he grew up on a high country station in Canterbury so is right at home in the great outdoors. His background is in off shore drilling and has some great stories to tell from his time in far flung places like outback Australia and Antarctica. When he's not guiding or spending time with his family he loves exploring the South Island on his beloved BMW motorcycle.
Hear what Richard's guests say
Richard was great, so knowledgeable about every area. Nothing was too much trouble for him to deal with, and always with a smile. Even when the weather turned, he still kept trying to make things better for us. Thoroughly enjoyed it all, recommend to all, over too soon.
Sean is a keen surfer and traveller, he loves the great outdoors and is passionate about the environment and you'll feel this right away when you're on a tour with him. He is also trained artist and graduate of Elam School of Fine Arts, so when you're travelling with Sean you're seeing landscapes in a unique light.
Here from Sean's guests
Sean was one of the best guides I have experienced on tours. A nice very caring young man.
Brent de Jongh
Brent is a proud Aucklander who was destined to work on the tourism front line showing visitors to New Zealand our beautiful country. Brent started his guiding life in 2003 and is still going strong, he has also worked in the safety audit side of tourism too so knows how important all the back end systems are to keep everything running smoothly on tour. In his own words "I have what some say, an unhealthy love affair with New Zealand, an obsession for great service and a penchant for cheese scones!" You can't argue with that!
What Brent's tour guests have to say
Brent is AWESOME! He is an excellent driver, I always felt safe. He is very knowledgeable of NZ and of the different areas we visited. Loved his stories! And he was very kind and attentive when I become ill when we crossed to the South Island. I've never been sick on a trip, so I really appreciate the help getting the care I needed. Thanks, Brent and thanks MoaTrek.
Janet Donahue, USA. Janet travelled with Brent on our Kakapo 21 day tour back in 2018.
MoaTrek Small Group Guided Tours
The guides are a big part of our tours and what guests always come back to us and tell us they loved most about the tours. Our guides love two things most of all, New Zealand and meeting visitors to our country, their work with MoaTrek combines these two passions perfectly.