Helensville: Campervan and Duck Heaven!

Who knew that our campervan would take us on so many little adventures… to get it fixed?! Our latest campervan issue, (the fact that the fridge is busted and stinks), brought us to the small town of Helensville.

This is the base of Jucy By Design, a sort of campervan pimp-my-ride garage where Jucy Rentals personalise all their campers. If you ever get to see any of their campers, (which you will all over New Zealand) you’ll see that they are one of the best in New Zealand at kitting out campers. That’s kind of why we went to them when we didn’t have enough money to buy ourselves a new fridge, (#backpackerproblems). Amazingly, they were kind enough to help us out in exchange for some sexy 360 photos of their vans. (More on that later on in the year).

We went to their swanky Auckland office to organise everything (see 360 below), and few days later, the fridge was ready to be installed in Helensville!

To be honest, we didn’t know much about Helensville, other than that it’s a good place for finding WWOOFing hosts for backpackers. But here we were with the opportunity to explore while Jucy installed the fridge.

Those green and purple campers

First things first, we headed to the Jucy By Design garage. Robin, drone pilot extraordinaire, couldn’t resist getting the drone up in the air to show you the many campervans they produce here. It’s pretty incredible to see how they transform characterless white vans into fun green and purple campers with all the fixings! Then, while the fridge was being installed, we headed into Helensville township to see what’s going on.

Jucy campervans in the making. Jucy campervans in the making.
A Helensville heron looking all graceful and what-not. A Helensville heron looking all graceful and what-not.
Picnic banter! Picnic banter!
Graham showing us our brand spanking new fridge. Graham showing us our brand spanking new fridge.

Rocking out on the riverside

What do backpackers do when visiting a new place? Go for a wander! We’re putting the wander into wanderlust right here. It wasn’t long after walking past a few coffee shops and historic-looking buildings that we found an entrance to a riverside walk (behind the pharmacy, if you’re interested). Instantly, we could hear the sounds of ducks going crackers, or should we say quackers? (Wheyy, pun time!)

Just a quick walk along a riverside boardwalk gave us front-row seats to the bird show! Herons, pukeko (those long-legged blue birds), ducks, seagulls, butterflies, skink lizards… more birds we didn’t know… and all that fun stuff. It wasn’t a bad picnic spot either!

The beer cooler is complete!

About four hours later, the fridge had been installed. It’s all fancy, shiny and new! Graham, one the Jucy guys, showed us how to operate the fridge, showing us how to save on the energy consumption when we are not using it (take the fuse out! Genius!). It beats the hell out of the old fridge and its nostril-insulting smell.

All in all, it’s a relief to know that the shamelessly English girl can now keep her beers cool, while the shamelessly French guy can now store his cheese…

On that note, we’ll leave you to mess about with this 360 image of us outside the Jucy office in Auckland. As you can see, it’s the aftermath of us finding out we were getting a free fridge. Plus, it’s on Fort Street, a pretty cool street in Auckland. Enjoy!

Laura and Robin

Want more?

Why do we need a campervan anyway? For our year on the road! Check out the full details of our New Zealand’s Biggest Gap Year. Even get a chance to see the campervan’s progression from neglected piece of junk to a roadworthy beast in Preparing the Campervan for a Year on the Road.

If you want to plan your own New Zealand campervan adventure, check out all our advice in Different Types of Campervans in New Zealand and Buying a Car in New Zealand Step by Step.

Until our next blog post, be sure to follow us on good old Instagram and get some more New Zealand travel tips on Facebook.

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  1. Thank you so much for your time in developing this educative article.

    Comment avatar Tashina Catmull
    30/05/2016 at 3:24 am
  2. Good luck for the trip, I’ll ready you daily with my morning coffee

    Comment avatar ibraam
    23/06/2016 at 7:19 pm
  3. I can’ even find Helensville on a map 🙁

    Comment avatar inka
    06/07/2016 at 7:10 pm
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