New Zealand is a unique land of breathtaking scenery as craggy coastlines, golden beaches, lush rainforests, snow-capped mountains, bubbling volcanic pools, rivers jumping with rainbow trout, and glacier-fed lakes compete for attention; a region beautifully showcased in the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
Approximately 20 minutes south of Rotorua, Waiotapu is the region’s most colourful thermal park.
In English Wai-O-Tapu means ‘Sacred Water’ and it is easy to see why. Hot pools ranging in colour from turquoise blue, rich green and gold to an almost olive/yellow make the water at Waiotapu a dazzling must see.
Art deco Napier
Razed by an earthquake in 1931 and subsequently rebuilt in the Art Deco style of the time, the laid-back coastal town of Napier now boasts one of the world’s finest collections of lovingly preserved Art Deco buildings.
A truly captivating experience awaits visitors to Auckland’s Sky Tower. At 328 metres, it is the tallest man-made structure in New Zealand and offers breathtaking views for up to 80 kilometres in every direction.
Auckland Museum is filled with Maori and Pacific Island collections. Otara Market, on Ponsonby Road has the country’s finest expression of Polynesian culture and local foods, while Auckland’s Karangahape Road is New Zealand’s funkiest street.
Aoraki Mount Cook
The effort of a steep climb up the mountain is repaid with outstanding views over alpine glaciers, snow-capped peaks and crystal-clear lakes. Standing 3754m (12,316ft) high, Aoraki Mount Cook is the highest mountain in New Zealand. The mountain, which attracts climbers from all over the world to its snow-covered peaks, stands in Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park on New Zealand’s South Island.
Waitomo Caves, where explorers can abseil into the ‘Lost World’ cave, are the most visited, especially famous for their glow-worm grottos. You can also try cave rafting or tubing, where participants float through the cave system on custom-made tyres keeping an eye out for glow-worms.