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New Zealand
Travel Guide

Immersed in rich Maori culture and generous with natural wonders; discover more about the land of the long white cloud.

Top Places to Visit in New Zealand

Aotearoa – the Maori name for New Zealand, is made up of two main islands – the North and South islands. Also known as NZ, Kiwi land and the land of the long white cloud; whatever you call New Zealand, the country has something for every traveller, from natural beauty, museums, world-class gastronomy, adrenalin-inducing sporting adventures and more. Below are our picks for the top places to visit in NZ!

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World-class skiing, bungy jumping off a suspension bridge and jet boating through canyons; this New Zealand jewel is an extreme sports fans dream.

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From famous attractions and cultural institutions, to breath-taking landscapes - New Zealand’s most populated city has something for everyone.

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Visit a Maori village, feast on a traditional Hāngī, raft down a waterfall or take a dip in a hot spring. Visit Rotorua to take in the natural wonders and immerse yourself in Maori culture.

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Shop your way through a variety of markets, visit historic towns and monuments, or stroll through one of the many parks or Botanic Gardens.

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Waiheke Island

An island in the Hauraki Golf of New Zealand boasting world-class vineyards, eco tours and a thriving art scene.

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Hawkes Bay

Famous for its wine and gastronomy, Hawkes Bay is definitely one for the foodies and wine-lovers! Or relish in nature with hikes, waterfalls, and mesmerizing beaches.

Getting around New Zealand

With more than 15,000kms of coastline and around 2,026 km separating the North and South islands, New Zealand is a vast country to make your way around. Fortunately there are ample ways to travel around Kiwi land.

By Air

If planning to travel to a few of NZ’s top cities, in between the two islands, or if you’re short on time, flying may be a good option. There are a number of major airlines, budget airlines, and smaller regional airlines that connect to all major cities and/or the outer islands. Some of these include Air New Zealand, Jetstar and Barrier Air.

By Car or Campervan

A popular way of getting around New Zealand is hiring a campervan due to the abundance of caravan parks around the country, and the budget-friendly way of seeing many different destinations with built-in accommodation. There are a number of companies which rent out campervans, including Jucy, Escape Campervans and Maui.

Then there’s always the standard car rental route you can take to sightsee around the land of the long white cloud. Prices vary based on length of rental and type of vehicle chosen but most of the major car rental companies operate around NZ, including some smaller companies. Just remember to check whether you need an international license, or if you can get by using your local license. The New Zealand Transport Agency outlines rules on licenses for driving on New Zealand roads.

By Bus

There are a few bus companies which can transport you around NZ, including InterCity and Kiwi Experience – just make sure you check which provider offers trips to your chosen locations. Also be sure to check out the different types of bus passes on offer – you may be able to save some$$$ by getting a pass!

By Boat

The main reasons for travelling around NZ by boat would be to visit one of the outer islands such as Waiheke Island or Great Barrier; or if travelling between the North and South islands. The Interislander ferry runs a service between the two – more specifically between Wellington on the North Island and Picton on the South.

Things to do in New Zealand - Not to Miss Experiences!

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Explore Milford Sound

Undoubtedly one of New Zealand’s most spectacular natural wonders; this fiord off the west coast of New Zealand’s South Island is abundant with waterfalls, rainforests and mountain peaks all ready to be explored.

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Experience Middle Earth ™ at Hobbiton™

Take a tour around the grassy meadows of the Shire ™ - seen in The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies films - and visit some of the most recognisable locations from the films!

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Enjoy Gastronomical Marlborough

Seafood tours, a chocolate factory, world-acclaimed wines, locally-grown delicacies and award-winning craft beer; no foodie should miss a trip to NZ’s Marlborough region.

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Extreme Adventuring in Queenstown

Explore Queenstown by air on a tandem skydive or a heli-skiing trip, by water on a rafting, jet boating or river surfing adventure, or on land by horse, mountain bike or four-wheel-driving!

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Get Warm at Rotorua’s Geo-Thermal Hotspots

Invigorate your skin (and soul!) in a mud or sulphur bath, visit the ‘Living Thermal Village’ of Whakarewarewa or experience the steam vents and bubbling craters of earth’s heat by taking a walk through Craters of the Moon.

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Discover Abel Tasman by Air, Land or Sea

Explore the golden beaches, marine life and lush vegetation of the Abel Tasman National Park by kayak, hang glider, on a cruise, or even underwater on a scuba excursion!

When is the Best Time to Visit New Zealand?

When to visit New Zealand really depends on the type of holiday you want, and the type of activities you plan on doing when you get there as the seasons vary greatly! As New Zealand is located in the Southern Hemisphere, the seasons are the same as Australia, with winter falling mid-year and August, and summer beginning at the end of the year.

As with most locations, travelling during the December/January period usually means it’s more crowded and expensive – on the plus side though you will enjoy the warmest weather over this time.

If visiting Queenstown, Wanaka, Whakapapa or other top spots during ski season, visiting during winter is naturally the best option if you plan on doing some skiing, snowboarding or other alpine sports.

Autumn in New Zealand is between March and May and is great if you want to see the leaves change colour; while spring – between September and November - is an excellent time for white water rafting and visiting parks and gardens due to the blooming of new flora around the country.

New Zealand Travel Money Guide

New Zealand Currency

The official currency of New Zealand is the New Zealand dollar, otherwise known as the NZ dollar, the ‘Kiwi’, or as its currency code – NZD. The NZ dollar has been the official currency since 1967 and as with most dollar currencies is made of 100 cents to 1 dollar.

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