New Zealand, known to its indigenous Māori people as Aotearoa (the land of the long white cloud), offers an array of magnificent landscapes, activities, and cultural encounters that could fill an entire travel bucket list on its own.
And it’s so easy to travel nowadays. Flights to NZ from UK don’t even cost much and in a few hours, you can get in touch with New Zealand’s culture. There are several airlines offering routes that connect major UK airports to Auckland, Christchurch, and Wellington, so you can decide which part of Australia you want to explore first. But why should New Zealand be on top of your travel bucket list?
A landscape paradise
New Zealand’s dramatic topography has been sculpted over millennia into a masterpiece of nature. The islands boast a photogenic medley of volcanic cones, deep fjords, glittering lakes, snow-capped peaks, and primaeval forests. Every twist in the road reveals a new vista, each more breathtaking than the last.
It’s no wonder that the country has served as the backdrop for epic film series like The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, which have immortalized its landscapes in the minds of millions. And if you’re also amazed by the New Zealand landscape, don’t hesitate to check out Travelessence where you can find tailor-made holidays to New Zealand, but also Australia! You don’t have to spend time on what to see next, just message them and they will tailor your holiday to your preferences.
An adventurer’s playground
What’s a trip to New Zealand’s landscape without a little adventure? New Zealand is like a haven for adrenaline junkies. Queenstown, on the South Island, is especially known as the ‘Adventure Capital of the World’, a place where you can bungee jump, skydive, and jet boat on the same day.
But not everyone’s an adrenaline junkie, right? For the less extreme, there’s hiking (or ‘tramping’, as Kiwis call it), kayaking, and skiing. The country’s compact size means that you can climb a mountain in the morning and surf at a beach in the afternoon.
Since New Zealand is geographically isolated, it has a unique biodiversity. You can watch the playful dolphins in the Bay of Islands or spot the elusive kiwi bird in a native forest. This is perfect as you can encounter species found nowhere else on Earth.
Cultural riches and the spirit of manaakitanga
The Māori culture is a cornerstone of New Zealand’s identity. The spirit of manaakitanga (or hospitality) is alive and well here. Visitors can partake in a hāngi feast, visit a marae (meeting ground), and experience a powerful haka (war dance) performance. This deep-rooted culture provides a touchstone for understanding how to interact respectfully with the land and its people.
Even the language is steeped in the landscape, with many place names offering a lesson in the natural history or spiritual significance of a location. The preservation of Māori traditions and their integration into modern New Zealand life is a profound journey for many travellers, often leaving a lasting impact.