Dream Trip: New Zealand
Collected by Stephanie Perry, AFAR Local Expert
One of my all-time favorite trips was to Australia in 2011, and almost everyone asked if we were going to New Zealand, too. Sadly, there wasn't time, but since then I've read about Maori culture, taken classes in Polynesian dance, and rewatched "The Whale Rider" (still a great movie!). I still hope to make it to New Zealand someday...
Waipoua Forest 0376, New Zealand
As I turned the bend of the trail, the sight of this massive ancient tree took my breath away. Te Matua Ngahere the 'Father of the Forest', has a trunk over five metres in diameter, believed to be the widest girth of any kauri tree in New Zealand....
Wellington, New Zealand
Cable cars, Victorian houses, fresh crabs on the waterfront: Wellington, New Zealand, is a Southern Hemisphere City by the Bay. With a harbor at its doorstep, farms to the north, and one of the world’s most active café scenes, this city is well...
101 Glenmore St, Kelburn, Wellington 6012, New Zealand
Though Wellington seems best traversed on foot (as Hobbits do, right?), the cable car ride is well worth breaking this habit. Leaving from Lambton Quay, for $6 return, the cable car takes you up to the top of the Botanic Gardens, providing a...
376 Karangahape Rd, Auckland 1010, New Zealand
Coco’s is like our second living room. My staff and I come here in part because the scene and the rustic, Italian-inspired food are so good, but also because everyone is a friend. 376 Karangahape Rd., 64/(0) 9-300-7582. This appeared in the...
Hampden, New Zealand
Legend has it that these boulders are the food baskets of the great ancestral canoes that brought the Maori to New Zealand. On a recent trip to New Zealand to celebrate my retirement, my husband and I enjoyed walking around the beach marveling at...
Excelsior Building Galway Street & Commerce Street, Britomart, Auckland 1010, New Zealand
Cafe Hanoi is choreographed dilapidation. Rough brick, crumbling plaster, and layers of scraped-back paint are softened with huge Noguchi globe lamps and planes of hand-oiled timber. —Nat Cheshire Galway and Commerce Streets, 64/(0)...
23 Britomart Pl, Auckland, 1010, New Zealand
We built this restaurant in 2011. It’s an architectural vagrant. People dine under pictures of pendulous bosoms and skulls. My colleagues and I roll out the drawings we’re working on across the tables and chefs bring food. I always have a white...
Whakaari / White Island, Bay Of Plenty, New Zealand
The "youngest country on earth" was forged along the Pacific Ring of Fire, a geological pressure cooker that creates glaciers and volcanoes (and is susceptible to earthquakes). One of New Zealand's active volcanoes, the White Island in the Bay of...
Green Lake, Bay Of Plenty 3073, New Zealand
This is in Waiotapu, Rotorua, New Zealand. This lake really is that green! There are walking trails here to look at all the thermal activity. I was amazed to see the color of the lake when I turned. It is even brighter than this photograph! I...
Auckland, New Zealand
Every year in Western Springs, the Pacifika community comes together to celebrate its cultures, food, dancing, and singing at a multi-national festival. Auckland hosts the world's biggest Polynesian community, so from Niue to Tuvalu to Fiji to the...
Wellington, New Zealand
I still owe my best friend millions for introducing me to Wellington's Cafe L'Affare while I was working in New Zealand. Founded in 1990, this quintessential cafe is cozy, delicious and gourmet ground breaking. What are your food choices, you ask?...
Matakana 0985, New Zealand
Have time to explore beyond Auckland’s CBD? 45min north is the village of Matakana that gets inundated ever Saturday morning by Aucklanders going to its Farmers Markets. Fresh organic produce, whitebait fritters (a local delicacy), hand-made...
SH 47, National Park 3989, New Zealand
These days New Zealand’s landscape may be best known from scenes in The Lord of the Rings, but set aside your preconceptions of Mt. Doom: Mt. Ngaurahoe (Doom’s butt double in the films) and the craters surrounding it are gorgeous. The Tongariro...
290 Montreal St, Christchurch Central, Christchurch 8013, New Zealand
I am a coffee-seeker. When traveling to a new area or country, I will always try the local brew. So, after tasting the typical New Zealand flat white and long black, I had to try the Thunder Thighs; a decadent and decked out mochaccinno from my...
Wellington, 6011, New Zealand
Ginger, kola nut, lime, and other flavors star at the new Six Barrel Soda Co. Sip your soda or float with a beef and cheddar slider, served with chips. Syrups, bottled on-site, are available for purchase so you can mix fizzy drinks at home. Corner...
19 High St, Auckland, 1010, New Zealand
Unity is what all bookstores should be: a good collection of global newspapers by the door, a room stacked to the gills with curated books and magazines, and an extremely well-read staff. Three people is a crowd here; 30 is a very civilized riot....
585 Waitomo Caves Rd, Waitomo 3977, New Zealand
Waitomo, on New Zealand’s North Island, is known mostly for its glowworms. This is one of the few places in the world where they exist and millions of visitors descend onto the village every year to walk through the dark caves and see the sparkly...
Franz Josef Glacier, West Coast 7886, New Zealand
Brace yourself for the physical pull you'll feel as you approach the dramatic, 7.5 mile long glacier named Franz Josef, in Westland National Park in New Zealand. Together with the nearby 12 mile long Fox Glacier, you'll be astounded by this unique...
Blenheim, New Zealand
New Zealand, although quickly becoming a tourist hot spot, is still a country populated by farmers. There are more sheep than people on the islands, and most towns have a local “farmers market” on the weekend where they sell their crops. While in...
Christchurch, New Zealand
Lonely Planet voted Christchurch one of the Top 10 cities to visit in 2013. The gateway to New Zealand's South Island, vibrant Christchurch is surrounded by a region of natural wonders. A city where you can cycle alongside the river, indulge in...
126 Broadway, Matamata 3400, New Zealand
Welcome to Middle Earth in the South Pacific, and an ideal stop for traveling fans of the author J.R.R. Tolkien and the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit movie trilogies. Near the rural town of Matamata—itself a destination for its LOTR-inspired...
Fox Glacier 7886, New Zealand
A drive down the West Coast of the South Island of New Zealand wouldn't be complete with a stop at Fox Glacier. It's just a short 10 minute walk with potentially a river crossing or two out to the closest point you can go without a guide. One of...
Bowen Ln, Auckland, 1010, New Zealand
Looking for something to do inside in Auckland? You can't pass up the Auckland Museum. With the country's—and probably the world's—biggest collection of Polynesian and Maori artifacts, the museum also regularly hosts exhibits and events featuring...
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