New Zealand is the country that sits just southeast of Australia. Because Australia and New Zealand are located close together, they are often combined into one visit. Please know that these two countries are entirely different from each other and even within each country, the landscape changes dramatically as you travel. Today we are focusing on New Zealand and 8 reasons you may want to visit this lovely, diverse country.
Reason 1: The Countryside
New Zealand stretches over 2 main islands, North & South, and encompasses about 600 smaller islands. Because of its length of about 1600 km. (990 miles) from tip to tip, its diversity is great. There are lush green pastures and rolling hills dotted with sheep, rain forests, and active volcanoes and geysers. Along its 9,300 miles of coastline, it sports beautiful beaches and breath-taking fjords depending on where you are. It is like a journey to several countries with dramatically different landscapes, but you are visiting only one.
Reason 2. No Worries Travel
There’s little to worry about in New Zealand. Of course, be aware of your surroundings and proceed with proper caution as you would anywhere. In New Zealand, you don’t have to drink bottled water, be suspicious of street vendors, or avoid restrooms. New Zealand is safe and clean. If you are out in the country hiking or biking, you don’t have to worry about dangerous wildlife and snakes. Public transportation is available, easy to use, and again, clean. If your travel requires that you fly within New Zealand, all the flights are less than two hours. If you rent a car, and I do not recommend doing so, one thing to know is you’ll be driving on the opposite side of the road.
Reason 3: Its People
Believe it or not, this country was one of the last settled places on earth. It wasn’t until the 13th century that Polynesians made a landfall. The Maori culture is their legacy. Colonization by Europeans began in the 17th century. Today New Zealand is part of the British Commonwealth and the official languages are English and Maori. Known as “Kiwis”, New Zealanders are friendly, outgoing, and sporty people in general which makes it a delight to interact with them on your visit. They will always make you feel welcome.
Reason 4. Accommodations
Unless you are visiting on a cruise, you have a variety of accommodation options, and some are quite unique. You can stay in a glasshouse near Christchurch with fabulous vistas and a view of the Southern night sky. Be brave and spend the night in a haunted castle on the Otago Peninsula. Retreat to the Mother Goose rhymes of your childhood and sleep in a boot in Nelson. Or be a cowboy one night and sleep in a covered wagon. It’s great fun for the adventurous at heart.
Reason 5. Eat, Drink & be Merry!
With rich pastures for cattle and lamb, over 500 vineyards, and extensive access to the sea, there is no end to the rich, natural array of foods with which New Zealand chefs create their culinary offerings. Be sure to taste local dishes with your daily dining. Award-winning restaurants are not unusual.
Reason 6. The City-Life.
Wellington, the capital city on Cook Strait, located on the North Island, is highly recommended. Here you can stroll the waterfront promenade, sun on the beach, or visit the Botanic Gardens above the city. Of course, you will get there by its famous red cable car. The city is compact so you can easily stroll about visiting its restaurants, quaint cafes, and shops for which it is known. Auckland, also on North island, is another great city to visit with its two harbors, the Sky Tower, an extinct volcano in its park, fabulous restaurants, and more. Queenstown on the South Island is a great jumping off point for exploring and adventure sports.
Reason 7. The Adventure.
If you love sports and adventure, New Zealand is calling your name. You will enjoy hiking (you can hike inside a glacier) biking, kayaking, bungee jumping (it started here!), sailing, river jetting, and skydiving! Less stressful outdoor activities such as fishing and swimming with dolphins are also available.
Reason 8. Variety of Experiences.
All manner of experiences are on offer here from farm visits to vineyard tours to gondola rides with meals. To enjoy as many activities during your visit as you can, just about every activity mentioned in this article (and many unmentioned) can involve being whisked to and from by helicopter. And then there are sight seeing tours from the vantage point of a helicopter tour. If you are a Tolkien fan, no visit to New Zealand would be complete without visiting the various settings of the movies, and having your photo taken, or taking a selfie, in front of a hobbit house.
As you can see, New Zealand encompasses a lot. As your travel professional, I will design a custom itinerary based on the things you wish to see and the activities you’ll enjoy. I will arrange all your travel plans, including round-trip air, hotel accommodations, ground transfers to and from airport/hotels, tours/excursions, rental cars, travel insurance, and payment plans when applicable. There are land tours and cruising options available as well. Your choices are endless! Are you ready to experience New Zealand?