Get the low down on the Hiking New Zealand and Active Earth Adventures team. We asked Anne van der Landen what she gets up to when she is not working and/or hiking.
Anne van der Landen - intern
I grew up in Alkmaar, known to tourists as the cheese city of the Netherlands. I have lived there my entire life, apart from some escapes abroad here and there. These started when I was 12 years old, when my parents decided to go after their dream of starting a business in France. They found a hotel in the Auvergne region, in a small village called Egliseneuve d’Entraigues and we called this home for three years.
Having moved back to the Netherlands and finishing High School, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to study and thought a gap year would help me decide. I spent nine great months in Seattle with a lovely host family and met some great people there. Although I didn’t want to leave, I once again returned home to the Netherlands and after having had some time to think about which direction I wanted to go, I started my Tourism Management studies in Amsterdam. Who knows maybe I will end up back in Alkmaar when I finish my studies operating cheese tours.
What are you doing when you’re not working or hiking?
I should be saying that I’m studying every spare minute I have, but I’d be lying. Right now, I try to see as much of this beautiful country as possible if I have the time (because I do actually study at times); five months sounds like a long time but that time passes by awfully fast. While I love to travel, it also gives me the opportunity to practice one of my hobbies, which is photography. Besides that, one of the things I love to do is going to concerts. And lastly, I enjoy just watching a movie or a TV show.
Fav coffee haunt?
Although I do like coffee, I don’t drink it regularly so I don’t really have a special coffee place. As bad as it may sound, I do love Caramel Frappuccinos from Starbucks…
The Tongariro Crossing
Have you done it?
Yes! It was part of the first trip I was sent on to give the guides a helping hand and see what a Hiking New Zealand tour is all about. The Tongariro Crossing is included in a few Hiking New Zealand trips, including the Northern Portion, Ultimate North and Don’t Cross the Ladies.
Why choose this hike?
It’s a challenging hike especially with the weather changing quickly, but the rewards you get along the way are extremely worth it: the Emerald Lakes, Red Crater and of course the views throughout the entire hike over the moonlike landscape. It is something totally different from anything I have ever seen before.
Anything special about your favourite hike?
This is a hike that you do together as a team. It’s tough and having fellow hikers nearby is a real motivator to get to the top together.