New Zealand is a country that offers a wide variety of tourist attractions and adventure activities. Long and narrow, we have miles of endless coastline, with beaches of all kinds – long and sandy, picturesque bays overlooked by our magnificent silver-green and red-flowered pohutukawas, and the stony beaches of the west coast of the South Island, perfect for hunting dogs. Beautiful lakes dot the landscape and fjords dent the coastline. The many tumultuous rivers make their way through the hills and the magnificent mountains.
It’s no wonder New Zealand is a paradise for those who love the outdoors. Water sports of all kinds, from the most exhilarating extreme sports to pumping adrenaline to the calmer ones such as swimming with dolphins, whale watching or fishing. Whether it’s river sports like rafting or water sports like surfing or kitesurfing, there is a complete list.
Our mountains offer a different selection of nerve-wracking options, as well as the more popular but popular snowboarding and skiing. Heli-skiing is popular with skiers who want to try something a little more demanding, while those who pursue the dream of climbing as many peaks as possible are drawn to our many demanding mountain challenges.
Being exposed, we have our fair share of wind! While the views for aerial sports are magnificent. Wind sports are numerous and
* hang gliding
* go up
and all these activities requiring sailing and wind are found in the main tourist destinations of the country.
Our bush is unique in New Zealand, with lush green subtropical growth – ferns, tree ferns and a wide range of trees native to New Zealand, over a thousand years old. The kauri is the king of the forest. This large spread out trees forms an awning in our many bushes on several levels.
Tramping and hiking
Trampling and hiking are very popular pastimes, and there are trails that range from a few hours to a few days to go, with rivers and streams, waterfalls, alpine plants, springs, and beautiful scenery mountainous and coastal. The most famous is the Milford Track, with several other well-known tramps (the New Zealand term for hiking) in the same region – Greenstone, Routeburn, and in the northern part of the South Island the Heaphy Track. In the North Island, the most popular day trip that some suggest to the world, certainly the southern hemisphere, is the Tongariro Alpine Crossing. This 17 km trek takes place in the territory of the Lord of the Rings or Mt Doom!
Personally, I would not have said that New Zealand was a natural country for sports like cycling. We have a lot of hills! But those who are enthusiastic, try it. There are many wonderful places for mountain biking. The campsite is very well taken care of. Our beautifully located golf courses attract golfers from around the world. Trout fishing and deep-sea fishing are other activities that attract people from afar. The rich and famous find that they can escape into the desert, down here, and often slip in and out quietly, for a break from their high-level life.
If culture is more your thing, we have something to intrigue you. The traditional Maori culture and way of life is a unique experience. They came by canoe from Hawaii over 800 years ago. Rotorua, with its thermal geysers, mud pools, and fascinating landscapes, is the best unique city to embrace all that is Maori. The most traditional Maori culture is found on the North Island, where the majority lived.
Our historic center is located in Waitangi in Northland. It was here that New Zealand’s founding document, the Treaty of Waitangi, was signed in 1840. The history of New Zealand is relatively new. Our “old” buildings cause some fun for visitors to Europe and the countries where they are old, older than even New Zealand when the Maori arrived!
Museums and art galleries
Museums and art and craft galleries are scattered throughout the country. New Zealander is a creative and innovative person. Perhaps this came from the pioneering spirit, or perhaps from our isolation. But we do many things a little differently. That is why our fashion designers have become internationally known for their originality. Te Papa in Wellington is the official national museum. The Auckland War Memorial Museum is also an excellent, more traditional museum. Maritime museums, Kauri museums, technology museums, car museums – they are numerous and varied, with different aspects of the history of New Zealand.
New Zealander loves their gardens and there are many that are open to the public. Ranging from tropical gardens in the north to cooler climate gardens with glorious spring flowers, there is real variation. Partly due to the climatic and soil variations. In the spring and summer, there are many annual garden tours.
Wine and food
If you are looking for internationally renowned wines, New Zealand has them too. We are lucky, with such a changing climate and soils, that we have many wine regions, each of which tends to specialize in varieties that are best suited to the area. With more than 400 wineries, the choices are numerous. Many New Zealand wineries also have excellent restaurants. Food and wine – what a vacation! And I can promise that as soon as you become addicted to New Zealand coffee, you will get withdrawal symptoms when you go home!
New Zealand has excellent music and our local productions and concerts are worth experiencing. Not only are there more traditional concert venues, but many open-air concerts are held in vineyards, parks and gardens. Some are sponsored by local councils and free. If you are here at the right time, you can enjoy a great musical event in New Zealand. Auckland has several major free concerts in the summer, where up to 200,000 people are present. So check out the tourist information centers.
With landscapes to stimulate the senses, photographers and artists have an endless range of constantly changing subjects to inspire while taking their New Zealand vacation. It really is the ultimate holiday destination.