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Adventure Guide Internship - Rotorua, NZ

Outdoor Guide Training, Experience & Work


90 Days


New Zealand


This is our specialised mountain biking and rafting program, featuring 8 weeks intensive practical and theoretical training, world-recognised guiding qualifications, plus work placements in the adventure tourism industry with the possibility of job placements to follow.


10 Sep - 8 Dec


From technical skills to emergency safety and group dynamics, this comprehensive course will prep you with all the skills needed to pass your guiding qualifications and feel confident to guide groups. 

Work experience and adventure tourism industry networking round off this awesome three month adventure in the North Island of New Zealand.

This North Island based program specialises in the following guiding disciplines:

  • Hiking
  • Mountain Biking
  • Rafting


Our aim is to prepare our participants for entry-level employment in global front-line adventure tourism positions.


While this is an Adventure Guide Internship, it's not all about the outdoors and outdoor pursuits. There will be cultural activities and exchange; sightseeing and touring; personal development; community and social events; free time and plenty of opportunity for exploration.  


To become a global guide, you will embark on a remarkable journey of learning, experiences and coaching. New Zealand’s diverse and spectacular outdoors will be your classroom, with lessons on leadership, technical skills, group dynamics and group psychology, and strategies to help in every area of life. 


Whether you are looking for a stepping stone into the adventure tourism career pathway as a guide, or just an awesome educational opportunity to live and work in the most amazing places on earth, the Pure Exploration Adventure Guide Internship is an epic, constructive, and rewarding way to spend 3 months in New Zealand. 



  • 12 week adventure tourism training and qualification program based in Rotorua, New Zealand
  • 12 weeks accommodation and 8 weeks meals (the last 4 weeks self-catered)
  • Employer networking opportunities and paid work placement available
  • All technical equipment, program related transport & travel
  • Qualified & experienced technical instructors
  • 2 x NZ Outdoor instructor association leader qualifications (hiking + mountain biking or rafting)
  • Pre-hospital emergency care qualification
  • Modules on guiding and leadership skills, critical incident management & technical skills
  • Live, learn, socialise and join the exciting cultural centre of Rotorua, as well as exploring many North Island regions!


  • English Language Fluency
  • Be 18 years or older at time of commencement
  • Moderate fitness is recommended. All professional development and training is provided
  • Have a passion for travel, adventure, & tourism
  • A desire to accept challenges, a thirst for knowledge, a love of outdoor activities or for our natural environment
  • Be a social team player that enjoys helping others discover adventure!

Note spaces on this program are extremely limited, as work placements are held with tourism operators for limited staff numbers. 


20171013NZAGP0704 Dana

Exciting & Adventurous Times!

Dana Ester - Florida, USA

"If you're considering this program, just go for it! I've always wanted to come to NZ, this course was the perfect opportunity to come here but also further my adventure career goals. If you push yourself, this course will help you get where you want to go."
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Climbing, exploring, loving NZ

Michel Affkerback, Germany

The highlight of the course so far for me is learning to climb multi-pitch by myself, or with a friend, and knowing what to do. If you are into the outdoors and thinking of becoming a guide, do this course! It's based in beautiful New Zealand and you'll learn a lot.

Becoming an adventure guide in NZ

Cyril Delteil, France

Coming from France I was worried about my English, but being here everyday and speaking with native speakers means my English has improved so much, alongside my outdoor skills.


A diverse and exciting program designed to keep everyone interested and busy throughout their stay, balancing plenty of action, learning, social and free time. If you are interested in furthering your mountain biking or rafting skills, this NZ based program is perfect for you.


Argentinian Orientation

Adventure lovers, welcome home. Considered by many as the ultimate adventure travel destination, we know you’ll instantly love this place. Clean air, wide spaces, unreal mountainscapes, your camera is going to get a work out as much as your legs!

The program begins in the humble mountain village of El Chalten, Argentina. This is the gateway to Patagonia’s most famous treks and the Los Glacieres and Torres del Paine National Park. All areas that you will come to know well and feel forever connected to.

Get to know your program mates and your base camp. Spend a few days getting familiar with the local area, learn local customs and culture, do a bit of administration, and fully absorb exactly what you’ll get up to over the next 12 weeks.


Introduction to Adventure Skills & Leadership

Time for an introduction to the disciplines that will become your bread and butter for the next eight weeks. You’ll get an in-depth briefing and training on hiking and guiding giving you the core skills needed for the training ahead. You’ll be doing this training while trekking on some of Patagonia’s most famous hikes - not a bad way to learn!

You’ll work on your knowledge of equipment, weather, and nutrition, then introduce you to essential training in group management, risk analysis, and leadership.


Become an Expert

It’s time to start putting your skills and knowledge to the test, as we start to push your limits and see if we can create some outdoor diamonds!

After getting loads of practice in the bush and on the rock, choose a strand to continue developing your abilities in the outdoors.

In groups of eight, you’ll receive training to satisfy NZOIA leader qualifications in Hiking, and one of the following:

  • Sea Kayaking

  • Rock climbing


Complete your training with two safety certificates

  • 40-hour Pre-Hospital Emergency Care
  • Swift Water Rescue

Then jump right into guiding!

You’ll be placed with various employers over these final weeks to satisfy log book requirements, giving each of you a minimum of 5 client days as lead or assistant guides in bush walking and in your chosen strand.

Finally, crunch time! Buckle down and consolidate your learning in preparation for your NZOIA assessments. 


Each week will include*

  • 4 days of Technical Training
  • 1 day of Self-Directed Learning
  • 1 day for Classroom Learning
  • 1 day for Admin or as Free Day

*The order of days will change each week and as your training progresses. This is simply a general outline.


If you're keen to maximise your time with us, you might want to consider the following paid add-ons...

Guaranteed* work placement position - NZD$1,500
If you pass your assessments, and have demonstrated a great attitude and potential for guiding, this is when we support your preparation and assist you in being placed into your paid work!

Self Led Expedition - NZD$1,875 - Choose a location, plan and lead your own expedition! Put all your new outdoor guiding skills to use for a self led 2 week adventure including transport, equipment, meals and accommodation. Chat to us for more details. 

Other Pure Ex Programs
We have a number of exciting programs in a range of countries that you may be keen to experience. These include:

Expedition Leader Program - For those keen to push their skills in high alpine regions, and begin to specialise in altitude and advanced technical hiking. A global course that finishes in the Himalayas.

International Educator Program - Perfect for those looking to become valuable contributors rather than just volunteer tourists. Learn how to make an impact and run your own global community, service and conservation projects.



This is a sample itinerary. Modules may occur in a different order due to weather conditions or scheduling requirements

*Guaranteed work placement positions are available as a paid add-on to your course fee, paid in full along with your course fee. We will assist you wherever possible in obtaining employment post course, on the conditions that you have passed your relevant assessments, hold a Working Holiday Visa in New Zealand, and have demonstrated a good attitude. You will be placed with one of our partner companies.