Well, for a starter why would you not want to go!
She is a beauty and worth the long haul journey by plane if you are coming from across the other side of the world. If you have more time, you could venture down using the luxury of a cruise ship and for the more adventurous by sailing a yacht.
Yes, it is the remotest country on earth. We usually, and I emphasise “the usual”, don’t have extreme weather so a visit can be achieved in all four seasons. Perhaps I can be daring and suggest that a visit mid-summer to mid-autumn when the weather is more settled. Unless of course, you indulge in some skiing then winter down on the slopes either in the North or South Island will be ideal.
As Billy Connelly, who has visited New Zealand on more than one occasion, has been known to quote; “There is no such thing as bad weather, just inappropriate clothing.”
So what’s so special about the place?
- Original Maori name: Aotearoa – translation – The Land of the Long White Cloud
- Fantastic scenery, fabulous festivals, superb food and wine [vineyard visits from Auckland to the East Coast of the North Island [Hawkes Bay], down to Marlborough and Central Otago in the South Island.
- Unique culture and amicable people [need I say more]
- Over a 1/3 of New Zealand is made up of protected parkland and marine reserves.
- Within a few hours, you can be skiing on a mountain to paddling your feet in the Pacific ocean.
- No dangerous or poisonous animals (with the one tiny exception of the Katipo Spider) – unlike our Aussie mates across the ditch where they have a few!
- It can be a haven for those seeking peace, rejuvenation and relaxation as well as a playground for thrill seekers and adventurers [the bungy jump!]
- There’s no place in the world where you can eat a kiwi [fruit], say hello to a kiwi [aka New Zealander], and see a bird called a kiwi! Which can be all achieved on the same day. For real – it’s true!
- Our unique Christmas Flower – the pohutukawa tree
Want to see and experience the ‘real New Zealand’?
Then visit the small towns and the less populated coastal beaches.
Other places worth a wander around would be:
THE NORTH ISLAND – Te Ika a Maui, meaning the fish of Maui
Raglan – surfing, beaches, bush walks, art and cafe scene
Gisborne – surfing, incredibly scenic drive around the coastal roads, first city in the world to see the sunrise
Mangawhai an Artists Haven, fishing, beaches, beautiful harbour areas
Whakatane/Ohope Beach – beaches, Maori culture
One place that isn’t known just for their beach scene and more world renowned for their Art Deco buildings and vineyards would be the Hawkes Bay.
For those interested in activities on the water:
- East Coast of the North Island for Big Game Fishing
- Central Plateau/Taupo for Trout Fishing also the South Island
- There is beach fishing in many parts of both Islands
THE SOUTH ISLAND – Te Wai Pounamu, the waters of greenstone
Golden Bay – art scene, beaches, bush and coastal walks
Hokitika – Food Festival, wild beaches, bush walks
Akaroa – a small town with a French heritage with a beautiful harbour and quaint township.
Te Anau – a small town worth a stop and not just the gateway to The Milford Sound
The Catlins, Southland. – a remote and beautiful area at the bottom of the South Island.
Especially when you do wander around the smaller places what you will find is a more relaxed feeling as you kick off your shoes and have a walk along the water’s edge, as you listen to the waves gently lapping at your feet. I can guarantee at some stage during your visit you will have a wide sweeping beach mostly all to yourself.