New Zealand is an incredible place; it is truly unique, like no other place on this very planet. The setting of great films such as King Kong and the Lord of the Rings trilogy, it really does have an otherworldly aesthetic. There’s an amazing amount of exploration to be done – forests, beaches, glaciers, mountains… New Zealand has it all. You have your modern, “western” cities mixing with traditional Maori culture to create a one-of-a-kind melding of styles.
New Zealand Experience
For those looking for a tour around New Zealand, you can book an organized tour or take a selfdive with a rented car. For those who are seeking adventure and tranquility New Zealand can offer magnificent views and excellent outdoor activities. From tropical beaches to beautiful mountain scenery New Zealand has it all.
Kiwis have a very happy go lucky attitude, friendly , very helpful and make you feel at home all the time. Roads are in excellent condition, although one way bridges are a bit weird. With a good map you will find your way easily and always remember to get your accommodation direction maps to make your holiday hassle free.
Top Tourist Attractions
- Auckland City tour and island hopping
- Bay of Islands
- 90 mile beach
- Waipoua – Kauri Tree Forest
- Waitomo Caves
- Abel Tasman National Park
- Kaikoura Peninsula
- Haast Pass
- Mount Cook
- Arthur’s Pass
Auckland City tour and island hopping
Auckland is the largest and most populated city in New Zealand with 31 percent of the country’s population. Auckland also has the largest Polynesian population of any city in the world.
This city has various parks such as Auckland Domian which is one of the largest parks within the city offering good views of the Gulf and Rangitoto island, Albert Park, Myers Park, Western Park and Victoria Park. Some volcanic cones can also be found within these parks including Mount Eden, North Head and One Tree Hill.
Various ferries organize transport to islands such as Waiheke Island and Rangitoto Island.
The Waitekere Ranges Regional Park to the west of Auckland offers beautiful and unspoiled forests with some very good trails such as the fairy falls track.
Bay of Islands
The Bay of Islands is located in the North island, north-west of Whangarei and is close to the northern tip of the country. It is popular for fishing , sailing and for its numerous small private islands and sandy beaches.
One can take a trip with a modern catamaran that takes this historical route of the original Ferry offering an extraordinary day tour around the bay of islands , visiting various islands, departing from Paiha. It also continues to transport visitors and locals between Paihia and Russell throughout the day.
90 mile beach
Ninety Mile Beach is a beach located on the western coast of the North Island and stretches towards Cape Reinga . The beach and the northern dunes are the most popular with tourists , looking very much like a desert landscape and are often used for Body boarding.
Ninety Mile Beach used to be a runway for some of the earliest airmail services between Australia and New Zealand. Sometimes it is still used as an alternative road to State Highway 1 north of Kaitaia, though mainly for tourist reasons, or when the main road is closed due to landslides or floods.
Waipoua – Kauri Tree Forest
Waipoua Forest preserves the best species of kauri trees remaining in New Zealand. It is famous for having two of the largest living kauri trees, Tane Mahuta and Te Matua Ngahare.
The forest is located in the Nortern Region and is associated with the Mataraua Forests. Waipoua has the largest population of North Island Brown Kiwi. The forest also contains three quarters of New Zealand’s remaining kauri trees.
The Waitomo Caves are cave formations known as a major tourist attraction in the southern Waikato region of the North Island. The word Waitomo comes from the Maori Language wai meaning water and tomo meaning a sinkhole. These Caves are believed to be over two million years old.
The main caves in the area are Waitomo Caves and Aranui Cave. Their major attractions are their stalactites and stalagmites, and the thousands of spectacular glowworms.
Abel Tasman National Park
Abel Tasman National Park is located at the north end of the South Island. It is the smallest of New Zealand’s national parks and consists of forested, hilly country, valleys and it is bounded to the north by the waters of Golden Bay and Tasman Bay. It is named after Abel Tasman, who became the first European explorer to sight New Zealand.
Department of Conservation administers the National Park. The Abel Tasman Coast Track is a track which follows the coastline; while an inland route, the Abel Tasman Inland Track, is less popular. Kayaking, camping , swimming and sightseeing are other activities carried out in the park.
Kaikoura is a town on the east coast of the South Island and is located 180 km north of Christchurch. The Kaikoura Peninsula extends into the sea, and the currents bring an abundance of marine life. The town was developed as a centre for the whaling industry. The name ‘Kaikoura’ translates to ‘meal of crayfish’ and the crayfish industry still plays an important role in the economy of the region.
Kaikoura has now become a popular tourist destination, mainly for whale watching and swimming with dolphins. There is also a colony of fur seals. At low tide one can get a better view of the seals as the ocean gives way to a rocky base which is easily accessed on foot. In Kaikoura it is also possible to see open ocean Albatross.
The town has a picturesque setting, with the Southern Alps on one side and the sea shore on the other. The mountains come nearly to the sea at this spot and this area offers various walking tracks around the mountains and coast. A common track is the Mt. Fyffe track, which offers a breathtaking view of the Kaikoura peninsula .
Haast Pass a mountain pass in the Southern Alps of the South Island is named for Julius Von Haast, an explorer from the Canterbury region. It is one of the three passes which have a tarred road from the east to the west over the Southern Alps.
The Haast Pass road has no settlements between Haast and Makarora. The road passes through beech forest and spectacular waterfalls such as the Fantail fall. The pass is within the limits of Mount Aspiring National Park and forms part of the boundary between Otago and the West Coast.
Mount Cook is the highest mountain in New Zealand and lies in the Southern Alps . It is a popular tourist destination and is also a favorite challenge for mountain climbers. Mt Cook consists of three summits lying slightly south and east of the main divide, the Low Peak, Middle Peak and High Peak, with the Tasman Glacier to the east and the Hooker Glacier to the west.
Mount Cook’s average annual rainfall in the surrounding lowlands is around 7.6 m. High rainfall leads to temperate rain forests in the coastal lowlands and a reliable source of snow in the mountains keeps the glaciers flowing. These include the Tasman and Murchison Glaciers to the east and the smaller Hooker and Mueller Glaciers to the south.
Arthur’s Pass is a mountain pass in the Southern Alps of the South Island and marks part of the boundary between Westland and Canterbury. The pass lies in a saddle between the valleys of the Otiro river, and the Bealey river in the east.
Arthur’s Pass highway is the highest of only three roads crossing the Southern Alps, the other crossings being the Haast Pass and the Lewis Pass . While passing through mountains and rivers one can admire the strange rock formations lying all around the region.
Most common accommodations are hostels, bed and breakfast and budget hotels, the majority of which hold very good standards. One can choose depending on his/her budget.
A Self drive tour is highly recommended with better opportunities to explore New Zealand’s Landscape. Drive through scenic roads and stop in various signed lookouts. You can also go for short or long walks on wooden paths all very well maintained.
It is very easy and convenient to rent a car. All major airports have their car hire facilities and you can find all class of cars for your personal needs. Fuel station accepts major credit cards which is very convenient.