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Discover New Zealand
New Zealand, or Aotearoa is comprised of two islands in the south-pacific. The islands were so remote that it was one of the last places to be settled and has no endemic land mammals, making it a paradise for birds. New Zealand, in many ways, is the southern counterpart of the United Kingdom and shares a lot of similarities. But the islands are steeped in all the richness, culture and geology that would make it seem more akin with the pacific islands. It is rich in Maori and Polynesian history, with stories and traditions that have become recognized the world over. You only have to think of the Hakka to understand. The south island or Te Waipounamu, has picturesque fjords, snowy mountains, valleys and quaint village like towns and cities that remind one more of Scandinavia, Scotland or even Middle-earth. The North Island or Te Ika-a-Maui, is a Volcanic land with black sand beaches, hot springs, prismatic lakes, volcanic peaks and subterranean networks that are home to some incredibly otherworldly creatures. It seems impossible that such diversity could exist on two small islands. It is a destination not to be missed.

It is a destination not to be missed.
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How to plan your trip:
New Zealand is a fairly expensive place and touring the country is often difficult if you don’t have a car. Because of its diversity, it is important to plan ahead. The weather can change at a moments notice and the temperature and climate can change drastically from region to region. Shopping at a supermarket is often more expensive than eating out, and as a result you may find yourself spending a lot of money on food alone. Most major roads have only two lanes, so it can take longer for you to travel from A to B than you may expect.  

Lake Wakatipu

Transport:
In order to reach New Zealand, most visitors will need to transit in either Asia or Australia. If you are heading in from the United States, sometimes it is cheaper to buy a one ticket to Hawaii or a one-way ticket to the pacific islands, and then purchase another one-way flight to New Zealand. You will most likely arrive via Auckland in North Island first. The best way to catch a domestic flight cheap to another NZ city is to book a night rider ticket with Air New Zealand, which starts at $39.
If you can avoid it, don’t book a tour. Tour buses will get you to some of the sights in New Zealand but they cost a lot of money. If possible hire a car or campervan that uses diesel (petrol is expensive), to explore the country, and this is one of the best and cheapest ways to travel in NZ extensively. Alternatively, you can buy a car privately, from trademe.co.nz and sell the car/van before you leave. This can save you a lot of money as you can get most of your money back, and as insurance is not compulsory in NZ it makes purchasing a car very easy (I would recommended buying insurance though). If you decided to buy a car, you may need to get an international driver’s license before you arrive. You will also have to buy a postal address to register the car.

ACCOMMODATION:
Booking a hostel is a cheap way to stay in New Zealand. However, outside of Auckland, most cities don’t have a whole lot of accommodation, including hostels, to choose from and they book up very quickly. Following from above, renting a campervan can take the hassle away of trying to book accommodation from city to city and there are plenty of free places you can camp in NZ. Alternatively, if you buy a van you can put a bed and camper-stove in the back for a build-it-yourself styled accommodation. A lot of hostels will advertise used build-it-yourself vans on their bulletin boards. Urban nights Christchurch, Auckland and Wellington are a few places where you can grab a hostel fairly cheap. There really isn’t the greatest amount of budget accommodation outside of hostels so your options are pretty limited whilst exploring the cities. Alternatively, there are a lot of friendly people in NZ, so check out Staydu, couchsurfer or AirBnB, and stay somewhere where you can connect with Kiwi’s. Stay in nature There are some beautiful farms which offer some spectacular views, which offer reasonably priced camping or accommodation and Taranaki offers quite a few farm stays. Otherwise, once again, hire a campervan or buy a van and adventure the landscape at your own time and comfort.

Maori Ceremony

Urban nights:
Christchurch, Auckland and Wellington are a few places where you can grab a hostel fairly cheap. There really isn’t the greatest amount of budget accommodation outside of hostels so your options are pretty limited whilst exploring the cities. Alternatively, there are a lot of friendly people in NZ, so check out Staydu, couchsurfer or AirBnB, and stay somewhere where you can connect with Kiwi’s.

 Stay in nature :
There are some beautiful farms which offer some spectacular views, which offer reasonably priced camping or accommodation and Taranaki offers quite a few farm stays. Otherwise, once again, hire a campervan or buy a van and adventure the landscape at your own time and comfort.
Destination Guides


​​Australia
Belgium
Belize

Canada
Croatia

Czech Republic
England

France
Germany
Greece

Indonesia

Ireland
Italy
Malaysia
Malta
Myanmar
New Zealand
Poland
South Africa
Spain
Thailand
Usa
Vietnam

Taupo


WHERE TO SPEND YOUR MONEY

Do:
Some of the smaller and less touristic caves at Waitomo, which offer you the chance to see the glow worms in a more personal and magical way. You also get a better opportunity to take photographs, than in the main cave, as you will only be in a small group of 3-4 people.

Eat: Food in New Zealand is expensive, but the produce is incredible. The seafood is really outstanding and New Zealand dairy is world class. Just be prepared to pay for it. Drink: New Zealand has some of the best coffee roasters in the world, and most cafes offer a phenomenal cup of joe. Other than the coffee, you can’t get much better than the wine. Whites are generally better than reds, but they are still both excellent.

Now that you’re in New Zealand:
If you have some extra time on your hands, visiting the pacific islands are an easy journey from Auckland and affords you the opportunity to have a tropical get-away.


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Natural Wonders

Urban Wonders

Curios

  1. lake taupo
  2. Queenstown
  3. giant squid
  4. Marlborough Sounds
  5. Wellington
  6. charity shops
  7. Coromandel
  8. Auckland
  9. hobbiton

Lake Taupo

Queenstown

Giant Squid

The Marlborough Sounds

Wellington

The Bucket Fountain

The Coromandel

Auckland

Hobbiton