Our guides' experience, dedication, and enthusiasm make them ideal ambassadors for your destination. They chart the course, finesse the details, and speak the language (English, as well as the local language). They also possess a truly rare skill, knowing when to let serendipity and inspiration take the lead.
Born and raised in New Zealand, Jan Kirkpatrick grew up with the outdoors as her playground and received a diploma in Outdoor Recreation and Management, which allowed her to steer her career into the environment she loves. Involved in setting up outdoor programs for people over 50 and running programs for woman over 30 to ‘give it a go’ in outdoor adventure, her passion has always been tramping (the term used for “hiking” in New Zealand). From here, it was a natural progression to move into guiding where she is able to share her Kiwi culture and love of the flora and fauna unique to New Zealand. In addition to tramping, Jan enjoys many other active activities with her family such as biking, paddle boarding, sea kayaking, motor biking, and snow skiing.
A New Zealand native, Lauren Stokes has traveled and guided extensively around the world but for her, the uniquely raw and un-populated scenery around New Zealand can’t be beaten. With 10 years of guiding under her belt, Lauren’s passion for New Zealand’s South Island beauty continues to shine as she loves sharing her native country’s wonderful and contrasting scenery with other enthusiastic travelers. When not guiding, you can find Lauren teaching Hatha Yoga, meditating, and spending time in nature.
Mark Brinsden is an avid adventurer and outdoor enthusiast. He has a diverse background having worked in financial markets and bio-science but it is in tourism were his passion lies. A proud ambassador for all things Kiwi, he enjoys nothing more than sharing the wonders of his home country with fellow travelers and visitors from the world over.
Nicola Tomlinson has an outgoing and adventurous approach to life with a varied background working in tourism on land, sea, and in the air—she is not only a professional tramping guide, but she has been a spa manager on a cruise ship and spent four years managing an airplane cabin crew! Nic is a true people person with a passion for the history, flora, and fauna of her native New Zealand and is a highly qualified photographer always willing to share some tips for capturing the beauty of her home country.