Recently, it was revealed that the home furniture store IKEA, made a huge mistake on one of their world maps. Did you hear about it? The $50 world map, which is only being sold in the USA, was missing the fantastic country of New Zealand. Perhaps, it’s not important to them but to us here at Hotelsescape, New Zealand is one of our favorite countries.
The list of reasons to visit New Zealand is actually endless, so we have narrowed it down to our favorite 20.
Where is New Zealand?
(IKEA are you listening?) New Zealand is 1700 km (1056 miles) east of Australia, that’s from coast to coast.
A flight to New Zealand can be very long! Travelers from North and South America can experience a long-haul flight of between 12-18 hours, whilst those visiting from Europe need to buckle up for around 24 hours, at least.
While the journey to get to New Zealand is tiresome, traveling around the country is simple, with plenty of choices.
We will shortly be sharing travel tips on how to stay entertained on flights, survive long-haul flights and advice on how to reduce the affects of jet lag. Why not Subscribe now, so that you don’t miss any of them.
Reasons to visit New Zealand
Get a cup of tea or coffee to hand as this list is amazing and you won’t want to get up again until the end.
It is hard to put into words the natural beauty of New Zealand, you need to experience it with your own eyes. Expect large open spaces, extravagant heights and diverse greens and blues that the forests, meadows, lakes, rivers, and waterfalls possess.
The largest city in the country is home to a whole host of activities. When you visit include Sky Tower, Viaduct Harbour and Waitakere Ranges to your itinerary.
Peter Jackson’s Cinematic Masterpieces
Before you visit New Zealand watch ‘The Lord of the Rings’ trilogy and ‘The Hobbit’, based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s books. You’ll get a glimpse of what to expect and some new locations to add to your NZ wish list.
If film inspires your wanderlust check out the movies featured in ‘6 Movies that Inspire Winter Travel to NYC.’
On the South Island, you must visit Christchurch. Much of the city was recently rebuilt due to a severe earthquake in 2011. Top points of interest include Cathedral Square and the awesome International Antarctic Centre.
Adrenaline Junkie Paradise
NZ is the best place on earth to get an adrenaline rush. Take your pick – bungee jump, skydive, jetboat, white water raft and/or go caving.
Ultimate Road Trip
If you want to visit the whole of NZ then hire a car, ideally a camper van. To drive around the North and South Island, you will need a minimum of 3 weeks. But ultimately, you will want a year or two.
Before you sit behind the wheel for an adventure of a lifetime plan your music with ‘Road Trip Playlist‘ and read ‘How To Stay Healthy on A Road Trip.’ If you do become ill in New Zealand, I hope you find some comfort knowing that their health care system is amazing.
Wellington, the Capital of New Zealand
The capital city is absolutely unmissable. Visit Te Papa Museum, ride the cable car, visit the botanical gardens and hike Mount Victoria for the most outstanding views.
New Zealand has multiple, if not hundreds of amazing golden beaches. Top beaches include Piha Beach, Cathedral Cove and Mission Beach. Keep reading for more beaches.
You may find some of these FREE Beach Friendly Travel Apps useful for your time on the sand.
Abel Tasman National Park
On the north of the South Island is a paradise named Abel Tasman. When you are here schedule a 3 to 5-day kayaking trip around the coast. You’ll be kayaking, camping, and spotting penguins, dolphins, turtles and stingrays. You should also include split apple rock to your itinerary.
If you love cycling then, Nelson is the place for you, as it has miles of safe roads and trails to ride along, including through 3 national parks. It is also the city in New Zealand that receives the most sunshine. If that doesn’t sell it, then, maybe this will…It has 7 locations from the World of Tolkien.
If you are a fan of the slopes, visit Wanaka and/or Queenstown during the winter for some epic snow.
Hot Water Beach
Pack your swimsuit and maybe a shovel, for the magical and free Hot Water Beach. Here you can dig your own spa pool, as big or as small and deep as you wish. It will automatically fill with thermal water, then all you need to do is sit back and relax.
The laid-back community of the Coromandel makes it a very peaceful place to visit and with The Pinnacles overnight hike and Karangahake Gorge located nearby it’s a natural fantasyland.
The natives are incredibly friendly and welcoming to all that visit. You’ll most likely never want to leave.
Franz Josef is an ice dream come true. You will hike up to and along with Fox Glacier, with cramp-ons. Also, you’ll navigate through an ice clearing, creating some lasting memories and awesome photos.
The New Zealand government and local communities take massive pride in the countryside and as a result, there are plenty of hiking trails to complete. The most famous ones are Milford Track, Arthurs Pass and Mount Cook.
If you are a fitness fanatic then you may enjoy reading “5 Tips For A Great Workout on Vacation.”
The stinky town of Rotorua offers some exciting and relaxing activities in the form of geothermal mud pools. If the smell of eggs (sulphur) doesn’t put you off then this is the place to work on your complexion. Rotorua is also known for its zorbing course. Great for fun, especially if you had a hamster growing up. You’ll discover why when you do it.
The town of Taupo has 3 activities worth doing. They are visiting Huka Falls, Pureora Forest Park and Lake Taupo.
The country’s national sport, rugby, is celebrated all over both islands. If you have the change to see the All Blacks, take it with both hands. Alternatively, schedule your trip to coincide with the Rugby 7’s matches.
Perhaps, the most unique experience in New Zealand is the Waitomo Caves. Here you can take an underground adventure, including climbing and floating down a stream on a tube (inflatable ring). But, the reason to book the tour is to witness the fascinating glow worms live in action.
The wildlife capital of NZ is home to the outstanding Royal Albatross Centre and is considered to be one of the best eco-friendly locations in the southern hemisphere. The amazing architecture and street art means that you are never far away from something that will catch your eye.
Lemon and Paeroa
The national drink is not to everyone’s taste, but as they say “when in Rome…” so order a glass and gulp it down.
Understanding and getting a glimpse of native history and culture is definitely one of the major reasons to visit New Zealand. Top locations to witness the famous haka are the Bay of Islands and Hokianga.
40 minutes from Greymouth, on the southwest coast, is a spectacle known as Punakaiki pancake rocks. These unusual rock formations are truly a sight to see.
Finally, the wine! Perhaps we should have written this one first, as it answers the question “Why should you visit New Zealand perfectly”. There are ample wineries and tasting tours throughout the wine regions, which span an impressive 1000 miles.
Need we say more, book your flights now!