It may be the other side of the world, but take away the arduous long journey, and New Zealand is one of the most enjoyable places you could hope to visit. Famously, it’s home to Lord of the Rings, and you can actually visit the filming locations too.
In terms of tourist numbers, New Zealand, like the rest of the world, has been recovering slowly but surely, and is now beginning to open up its doors to tourists once again. Prior to COVID-19, New Zealand recorded a total of 996,000 tourists for the year 2020, and it should honestly come as no surprise. Given the landscapes and amenities available across both islands, it’s a must-visit.
It’s worth keeping in mind the difference in seasons between hemispheres, meaning a UK summer trip to New Zealand might not provide the best in terms of weather, but a trip during the UK winter could be just the ticket for you if the weather is an important factor.
What can you do in NZ?
The short answer is; a lot. It’s an absolute paradise of activity, with plenty of exciting things available to do and see, whether it’s skiing in Queenstown or Wanaka, or revelling in the big city buzz of Auckland or Wellington – maybe even both if you have time. It’s not as if the islands are too big to see plenty in a two-week span.
New Zealanders are known for their sense of adventure, so don’t be surprised if you’re roped into doing some bungee jumping (pun fully intended). The daredevil spirit runs deep, so you might also try some boogie boarding down some sand dunes too. If that’s not enough for you, then why not climb Rangitoto Island – New Zealand’s youngest volcano.
For those less inclined to the taste of adrenaline, why not acclimate yourself to the taste of wine instead? New Zealand is among the finest when it comes to producing the gold and red stuff, and if you can sample it straight from the vineyard, you absolutely should.
See the islands by sea
If you want to see New Zealand in pure luxury, then you can get the best Silversea cruises to take you to the island, with all manner of wonderful amenities on board. On arrival, there will be plenty there to tickle your fancy, from the picturesque and quaint Hamilton Gardens to the natural spas of hot water beach.
Then you’ve got the aforementioned ‘Hobbiton’, as well as the real glowworm caves, which can be found at Waitomo. This is before we’ve even mentioned the incredible wildlife on the other side of the world, with the famous kiwi native to New Zealand – it even gives its name as a demonym of the people of New Zealand, who are famously known as Kiwis throughout the world.
You can also see the ever so slightly larger humpback whales at Kaikoura, which is a magnificent spot for whale watching. So book that flight today and don’t look back, because New Zealand is worth the jetlag. Once you’ve readjusted your body clock, you’ll be desperate to see what the fuss is all about.