New Zealand Travel Guide

New Zealand Travel Guide

Situated roughly 900 miles east of Australia, New Zealand is an island nation comprised of two giant land plenty—the North Island and South Island—and practically 600 smaller islands. Whether you’re seeking unique wildlife, world-class restaurants, pristine hiking, unmatched cultural experiences, kayaking in dolphin-stuffed waters, hair-raising adrenaline sports or sandy, tropical beaches, New Zealand brings it all together in one unforgettable nation.

New Zealand is historically unique in that it was one of the final main land plenty to be settled by humans. Estimates put the arrival of the first Māori settlers between 1250 and 1300, and European explorers didn’t arrive till the 1642 voyage of the Dutchman Abel Tasman. The primary assembly between Māori and Europeans resulted within the loss of life of four of Tasman’s crew members and at least one injured Māori, and Europeans didn’t return until 1769, when James Cook mapped nearly the whole lot of the nation’s coastline.

Via the whaling and trading industries, European exploration of the realm intensified, and starting within the early 19th century, Christian missionaries began changing much of the present Māori. By the late 19th century, the Māori population was at forty p.c of its pre-European contact level, due largely to European-launched diseases.

On July 1, 1841, the Colony of New Zealand was formally formed from the Colony of New South Wales, and in 1907, upon request from the New Zealand parliament, New Zealand was proclaimed a dominion within the British Empire. Traveling around New Zealand Zealand fought in both World War I and World War II and suffered by the Nice Despair as well.

In more latest history, there’s been a resurgence of Māori tradition and a number of other movements aimed at selling better awareness of their traditions.

New Zealand is commonly the story of two teams, Māori and Pākehā (European tradition within New Zealand), and cultural achievements aren't any exception. Within the Māori tradition, there are lots of stunning examples of carvings and weavings, both of which typically have religious and storytelling significance. From the early Pākehā, landscape paintings and some Māori portraiture were common.

One of the most widely recognized cultural parts of the Māori individuals is the haka, a posture dance that involves stamping feet, rhythmic cries and overtly uncovered tongues. The All Blacks, the New Zealand rugby union workforce, has performed this ritual earlier than matches since 1905.

While there has historically been little international interest in New Zealand’s cultural exports, the film industry has seen a latest boon. New Zealand films Once Had been Warriors, The Piano, Heavenly Creatures and Whale Rider all loved nationwide and international success, and the Peter Jackson–directed Lord of the Rings shot New Zealand into the mainstream spotlight.

On the music front, the Takapuna-born artist Lorde has broken into international acclaim, and the musical comedy duo Flight of the Conchords enjoys worldwide success as well.

When touring in New Zealand, hold a number of the following in thoughts:

CURRENCY
New Zealand’s currency is the New Zealand dollar. Solely in uncommon circumstances can you pay with US dollars right here, so always convert into the local currency. Most retailers settle for major credit cards, and ATMs are plentiful. If you happen to’re going someplace notably remote, just be sure to stock up on money beforehand. When exchanging money, the worst rates will doubtless be at the airport and in hotels. Simply withdrawing from an ATM tends to provde the most favorable rate.

TIPPING
While tipping’s not mandatory in restaurants, it’s still widespread, particularly in touristy areas. A ten percent gratuity for significantly glorious service will all the time be appreciated. At hotels, it’s considered a nice gesture to tip anybody carrying your bags or cleaning your room. The following tips tend to be a few dollars.

PUBLIC BEHAVIOR
New Zealand’s typically a fairly relaxed, open and friendly nation. Westerners won’t come up in opposition to too many strict social customs or taboos. There are, however, subtle differences between the coexisting European and Māori cultures. Māori, for instance, are more tied to social protocols, tradition and hierarchy.

ELECTRIC CURRENT
New Zealand operates on 230/240 volts. Always check your US items to see if they’re suitable with a hundred and ten and 220. If not, you’ll want a converter. New Zealand uses two- or three-pin plugs which can be angled, so an adapter’s essential as well.

PUBLIC BATHROOMS
Public bathrooms are clear, trendy and readily available throughout New Zealand. You can expect sinks, running water and toilet paper to be provided.

Keep a special eye out for "Exeloo" toilets. These high-tech restrooms indicate with a light if the stall’s vacant, occupied or closed, they play gentle music over a speaker system, they help you lock the door at the push of a button, and the bathroom automatically flushes when you wash your hands!

DRINKING WATER
Tap water’s clean and protected to drink throughout New Zealand. Should you’re heading out for multiday adventures within the wild, use the identical common sense you would anywhere. Don’t drink from stagnant swimming pools, and convey alongside your preferred water sterilization methodology—just to be safe.

AUCKLAND REGION
Named after the nation’s largest urban center, the Auckland region accommodates everything from metropolitan bars and eating places to the islands of Hauraki Gulf, where you’re liable to see whales and dolphins.

Auckland: A wonderful city of metropolitan and cultural significance, Auckland is a can’t-miss cease for anybody hitting the North Island. Take within the Sky Tower and gorgeous harbor, as well as the multicultural atmosphere. (Beware, though. Auckland has been ranked one of many world’s most expensive cities.)

BAY OF PLENTY REGION
Located within the Taupo Volcanic Zone, this area’s greatest known for its extensive geothermal activity, but it’s also a site of historical and cultural significance to the Māori people.

Rotorua: Whether you’re interested in the geothermal exercise, trout fishing or Maori culture, Rotorua will hold you spellbound. Don’t miss its array of hot swimming pools and geysers.

HAWKE’S BAY REGION
Nestled alongside the jap coast of the North Island, many come for the surroundings however stay for the wine. Hawke’s Bay is understood internationally as the house to many award-successful reds and whites.

Napier: Devastated in a 1931 earthquake, this resilient city rebuilt in its now-well-known Artwork Deco architectural style. People flock right here 12 months-round for wine festivals and celebrations of their Art Deco history and heritage.

WAIKATO REGION
Black-sand beaches, revered surfing, pure harbors and pervasive livestock make this North Island area quintessentially Kiwi.

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