Top 7 things to do in New Zealand

New Zealand is a country of rich culture, interesting wildlife and amazing destinations. Visitors easily lose track of time exploring endless beaches, forests, and snow-peaked fiords. And New Zealand is home to the internationally acclaimed Hobbiton!

Living the Kiwi life

New Zealanders, also fondly nicknamed ‘kiwis’, also enjoy all the excitement of big cities such as Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. Beautiful architecture, museums, theatres, and a thrilling nightlife lure visitors and residents alike.

Gamblers can try out their luck in one of the six casinos available across the country. Online gambling is also allowed, and platforms such as William Hill are just a click away. Check below for some of the hottest entertainment options in the North and South islands.

#1 – An Adventure in Queenstown

Queenstown is the perfect place to go wild! Enjoy nature by hiking, biking, or going extreme with river rafting and skiing. Did you know that Bungy Jumping was born there?

July is the best month to enjoy nature around Lake Wakatipu. However, if you want to take it slow, you can opt for the scenic cruise onboard Southern Discoveries’ catamaran. During the 45 minutes cruise, you’ll be amazed by the majestic vistas of Cecil Peak and Mt. Earnslaw.

#2 – Visit the Vineyards

Waiheke Island is branded the ‘island of wine’ for a reason. Go there and try some of the finest wines in the country. The idyllic vineyards and olive groves are also not to be missed. Auckland is only a short ferry ride away from this oasis. You can learn more about Maori culture with the Auckland War Memorial Museum and the Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki.

#3 – Visit Rotorua

There isn’t a better place to get in touch with Maori culture than in Rotorua. There, visitors will discover how a pre-European Maori village looked and taste the Maori feast or hāngī. The place is also full of geothermal pools, such as the breath-taking Waimangu Volcanic Valley. Rotorua is also packed with extreme sports options.

#4 – The Sounds of Fiordland

Near Queenstown and Te Anau, there’s the incredible Milford Sounds. There, you’ll see peaks, waterfalls and jaw-dropping fiords rising dramatically above the lake. Nicknamed the “Eighth Wonder of the World”, the place can be explored from above, with a flight. Other unforgettable ways to explore it include kayaking and an overnight boat excursion.

#5 – Pay a Visit to Mr Baggins

Since the Lord of the Rings movie trilogy, New Zealand has been known as the land of Hobbits. The movie set, in Matamata, was preserved, and is now called ‘Hobbiton’. Departing from the Shire’s Rest Café, a tour includes visiting the inside of Hobbit homes, the Green Dragon Inn, the Party Tree, and the mill.

Hobbiton is arguably one of the biggest attractions in the country. The Lord of the Rings fandom expands across the globe. Fans will take the first opportunity to make a visit for sure!

#6 – Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park

Located in Canterbury, this National Park offers a multitude of attractions. The region is marked by natural contrasts: glaciers, beaches, wild rivers, and mountains. You can reach the Southern Alps by train and see the International Dark Sky Reserve, the world’s largest reserve of this kind.

#7 – The Bay of Islands

The Bay earned its name from the 144 islands there. It’s a perfect spot for kayaking, enjoying calm waters, swimming with dolphins in the crystalline water, and more. The Waitangi Treaty Grounds is where the document that founded the country was signed.

Conclusion

Enjoy New Zealand! A shortlist could hardly do justice to a country with so many amazing things to see and to do. Maori culture is remarkably well-preserved and present in New Zealanders’ daily lives. The hand-picked options above are sure to provide a lifetime experience for everyone.

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From the editor: 19 August 2021

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