Although it may be one of the most remote places on Earth, New Zealand packs in an amazing range of sights into its two main islands.
From awe-inspiring mountain ranges to bustling metropolitan hotspots, it’s got something for everyone. So here are ten must-see sights in this enchanting nation.
This is a beautiful area of fjords around the South Island that everybody must witness at least once. The otherworldly cliffs that surround the crystal clear waters are frequently fringed with dramatic waterfalls. And there are also pleasant cruises that offer the chance to witness the area’s spectacular wildlife.
And then in the North Island there is the otherworldly Rotorua. This is the centre of some amazing geothermal activity that presents itself in natural eruptions of impressive geysers and hot springs.
Just above Rotorua is the famous city of Auckland. This is New Zealand’s most populous city and as such offers a great selection of restaurants, bars and shopping opportunities. And for a breath-taking view of this city, then head to the impressive Sky Tower (image by Just Kimberlee).
One thing that repeatedly raises New Zealand’s global profile is the success of its rugby team. Not only are they famous for their fearless pre-match haka war dance, but the All Black’s playing record is pretty phenomenal too, having nearly constantly held the number one world ranking since its introduction in 2003.
Bay of Islands
Although New Zealand is known for having two main islands, it’s well worth a trip to the far north where there’s a spectacular array of small islands, beaches, coves and wildlife with a great variety of penguins, dolphins and whales in the waters.
At the bottom of the North Island lies the majestic capital city of Wellington. Surrounded by picturesque mountains and with some lovely harbours to amble along, it’s frequently called ‘the coolest little city on Earth’. It also has some impressive museums such as the Te Papa National Museum of New Zealand.
Franz Josef Glacier
For those with a thirst for the outdoors, then a trip to Franz Josef Glacier on South Island is highly recommended. There are hiking tours available for all skill levels, and some incredible glacial sights to witness.
Slightly more tranquil is the majestic site of Lake Taupo. This offers spectacular lakeside scenery along with some chic restaurants and comfortable accommodation for unwinding after a long day outdoors! (image by Jennifer Park).
Tongariro National Park
If you really fancy getting out in the wild, head to Tongariro National Park which is not only the nation’s oldest national park, but also has an impressive range of Maori religious sites too.
Hot Water Beach
And finally, if you’re exhausted after all the trekking, then indulge yourself in the aptly named Hot Water Beach where you can bask on the golden sands next to the Pacific Ocean, and dig your own spa pool in the natural hot waters too!
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Feature image by Jocelyn Kinghorn