New Zealand Travel Information

New Zealand Travel Information

Situated approximately 900 miles east of Australia, New Zealand is an island nation comprised of massive land plenty—the North Island and South Island—and almost 600 smaller islands. Whether you’re looking for distinctive 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 distinctive in that it was one of the last main land masses to be settled by humans. Estimates put the arrival of the primary Māori settlers between 1250 and 1300, and European explorers didn’t arrive till the 1642 voyage of the Dutchman Abel Tasman. The first meeting between Māori and Europeans resulted in the loss of life of four of Tasman’s crew members and a minimum of one injured Māori, and Europeans didn’t return until 1769, when James Cook mapped nearly the entirety of the nation’s coastline.

Via the whaling and trading industries, European exploration of the world intensified, and starting within the early 19th century, Christian missionaries began converting much of the prevailing Māori. By the late nineteenth century, the Māori population was at forty percent of its pre-European contact stage, due largely to European-launched diseases.

On July 1, 1841, the Colony of New Zealand was officially 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. New Zealand fought in both World War I and World War II and suffered by the Nice Despair as well.

In more current history, there’s been a resurgence of Māori culture and several movements aimed toward selling greater awareness of their traditions.

New Zealand is usually the story of teams, Māori and Pākehā (European culture within New Zealand), and cultural achievements aren't any exception. Within the Māori tradition, there are many beautiful examples of carvings and weavings, each of which typically have non secular and storytelling significance. From the early Pākehā, landscape paintings and some Māori portraiture had been common.

Probably the most well known cultural elements of the Māori people is the haka, a posture dance that entails stamping feet, rhythmic cries and brazenly uncovered tongues. The All Blacks, the New Zealand rugby union team, has carried out this ritual before matches since 1905.

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

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

When touring in New Zealand, preserve some of the following in thoughts:

CURRENCY
New Zealand’s foreign money is the New Zealand dollar. Solely in rare circumstances can you pay with US dollars here, so all the time convert into the local currency. Most retailers accept main credit cards, and ATMs are plentiful. For those who’re going somewhere significantly remote, just make certain to stock up on cash beforehand. When exchanging cash, the worst rates will likely be on the airport and in hotels. Merely withdrawing from an ATM tends to provde the most favorable rate.

TIPPING
While tipping’s not obligatory in restaurants, it’s nonetheless frequent, particularly in touristy areas. A ten % gratuity for significantly wonderful 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 couple of dollars.

PUBLIC BEHAVIOR
New Zealand’s generally a quite relaxed, open and friendly nation. Westerners gained’t come up towards too many strict social customs or taboos. There are, nonetheless, subtle variations between the coexisting European and Māori cultures. Māori, for example, are more tied to social protocols, tradition and hierarchy.

ELECTRIC CURRENT
New Zealand operates on 230/240 volts. Always check your US gadgets to see in the event that they’re compatible with a hundred and ten and 220. If not, you’ll want a converter. New Zealand makes use of - or three-pin plugs which are angled, so an adapter’s needed as well.

PUBLIC BATHROOMS
Public loos are clear, fashionable and readily available all through New Zealand. You can count on sinks, running water and toilet paper to be provided.

Hold a particular eye out for "Exeloo" toilets. These high-tech restrooms point out with a light if the stall’s vacant, occupied or closed, they play light music over a speaker system, they assist you to lock the door on the push of a button, and the toilet automatically flushes once you wash your hands!

DRINKING WATER
Faucet water’s clear and safe to drink throughout New Zealand. If you’re heading out for multiday adventures in the wild, use the same common sense you'll anywhere. Don’t drink from stagnant swimming pools, and convey alongside your choosered water sterilization technique—just to be safe.

AUCKLAND REGION
Named after the nation’s largest urban middle, the Auckland area accommodates everything from metropolitan bars and eating Places to stay in New Zealand to the islands of Hauraki Gulf, the place you’re liable to see whales and dolphins.

Auckland: A gorgeous city of metropolitan and cultural significance, Auckland is a can’t-miss stop for anybody hitting the North Island. Take within the Sky Tower and stunning harbor, as well because 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 region’s best known for its intensive geothermal exercise, nevertheless it’s also a site of historical and cultural significance to the Māori people.

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

HAWKE’S BAY REGION
Nestled along the eastern coast of the North Island, many come for the scenery however keep for the wine. Hawke’s Bay is thought internationally as the home to many award-successful reds and whites.

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

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