Collected by AFAR Explorer
8 New Regent St, Christchurch Central, Christchurch 8011, New Zealand
At Shop Eight Food & Wine, chef Alex Davies turns regional produce—truffles, parsnips, lamb—into elevated country fare (say, lamb heart steak with rhubarb). The locavore vibe extends to the wines and to furniture made by neighboring Rekindle. 8...
Rolleston Ave, Christchurch City Centre, Christchurch 8013, New Zealand
There’s no better place to stop and smell the roses (and the dahlias and the begonias) than Christchurch Botanic Gardens. From New Regent Street, hop on the renovated tram, which stops near the entrance to the 80-plus acres of majestic oaks, water...
1 New Regent St, Christchurch Central, Christchurch 8011, New Zealand
Caffeine Laboratory has all the third-wave coffee shop trappings (locally roasted beans, passion fruit doughnuts). But there are splashes of New Zealand too: the long black (double espresso with hot water) and a sandwich made with bubble and...
145 Gloucester St, Christchurch Central, Christchurch 8011, New Zealand
After years of postquake restorations, the 106-year-old Isaac Theatre Royal—which has hosted everything from the Imperial Russian Ballet to boxing matches—reopened in November, due, in part, to celeb funding (thanks, Sir Ian McKellen). 145...
31 New Regent St, Christchurch Central, Christchurch 8011, New Zealand
The more than 180 bottles lining the walls of The Last Word, a tiny, whiskey-centric watering hole, can be a paralyzing sight. But the friendly servers know how to steer drinkers to the right spirit, whether a fruity lowland Scotch or a...
Lake Tekapo 7999, New Zealand
Lake Tekapo is one of those places in New Zealand that is instantly recognizable but few know its name. Bright blue with clear water surrounded by pink and purple lupines in the summer, it's the perfect background for these blooming flowers. A...
South Island 7183, New Zealand
New Zealand's smallest national park certainly packs a punch. Unlike so many of the great ragged mountains that dot the country, Abel Tasman curves along the north coast of the South Island, peppered with golden sand beaches and steep cliffs that...
39 Waitomo Caves Rd, Waitomo 3977, New Zealand
Arachnocampa luminosa is a glowworm—technically, a species of fungus gnat—that is unique to New Zealand. Although they’re found throughout the country, the premier place for viewing them is at the Waitomo Glowworm Caves, located two hours west of...
North Island, New Zealand
There's no other day hike in all of New Zealand that is as diverse as the Tongariro Alpine Crossing. The terrain is so unique, the location was used to portray "Mt Doom" in the Lord of the Rings films. The nearly 20 kilometer trail winds into high...
Lake Matheson, West Coast 7886, New Zealand
Lake Matheson is a magical little spot near Fox Glacier. It's a great place to take a walk at sunset, before enjoying dinner and some local wine at the Matheson Cafe. On a clear day, the reflection in the lake proudly displays all the reasons to...
Urupukapuka Island, Northland, New Zealand
There are 144 islands in the Bay of Islands on the North Island of New Zealand, and Urupukapuka (the largest of them all) aims to please. Check out the island's website to help plan your day, which will be a fabulous and full day that includes a...
Castle Hill 7580, New Zealand
This 10-day tramping (that's Kiwi for "hiking") trip on the South Island of New Zealand is hard to beat. This will be your first hike of many, all of which connect you to a land so beautiful that it's impossible to ever leave. Kura Tawhiti is a...
Terrebonne, OR 97760, USA
Even on a cold, gray day in winter, this state park is something to be celebrated. (The last time I was this impressed with a six-mile hike I was in the diverse and mind-blowing landscape known as the South Island of New Zealand.) Smith Rock State...
182 Wakefield St, Te Aro, Wellington 6011, New Zealand
Burn a few calories while adding many more during Zest’s Walking Gourmet tour of downtown. A guide will share local secrets (Did you know Wellington has more bars, restaurants, and cafés per capita than New York?) while you sample honey and...
20 Sea View Rd, Ostend, Waiheke Island 1081, New Zealand
Waiheke Island is carved with numerous scalloped coves along the leafy mountain coastline about 45 minutes from Auckland. It’s both the weekend retreat for New Zealand’s upper crusts and full time home for eclectic middle-age men and women who...
216 Okuti Valley Rd, Okuti Valley 7591, New Zealand
A farm-style experience about an hour from Christchurch, Okuti Garden caters to travelers who love to create and play. An art box encourages crafting; “tree circles” are great for yoga and meditation; and a small lake features a boat...
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...
New Regent St, Christchurch Central, Christchurch 8011, New Zealand
Opened in 1932, New Regent Street is Christchurch’s only complete heritage streetscape. With beautiful Spanish Mission architecture, and a distinctive pastel colour scheme, it’s long been popular with locals and tourists alike. In amongst the...
SH 1, Kaikoura 7371, New Zealand
This architectural, horticultural, and culinary masterpiece in the eastern New Zealand town of Kaikoura consists of a main lodge as well as five modern wood cabins stilted above the treetops. It’s no surprise that Hapuku’s owners, the...
36 Weld St, Hokitika 7810, New Zealand
Driving on roads less traveled, I repeatedly slam on the breaks of my red rental car to gawk at the wave-carved rocks and listen to the unending surf pounding the west coast of New Zealand's South Island. In Hokitika (population just under 3,000),...
Franz Josef Glacier, West Coast 7886, New Zealand
I was a glacier virgin. I had never seen one in person before, much less set foot on one. That all changed though as the helicopter lifted off and took off towards the incredible Franz Josef Glacier on New Zealand’s South Island. Almost as...
188 Wanaka-Luggate Hwy, Wanaka 9382, New Zealand
It’s the weird and wonderful architecture that first attracts visitors to Stuart Landsborough’s Puzzling World. After all, how could it not when the first thing you see from the road is a ‘cartoon like’ leaning tower that seems to be defying all...
246 Wanaka-Mount Aspiring Rd, Wanaka 9381, New Zealand
Located on Lake Wanaka in New Zealand, Rippon Winery is as well known for its view as it is for its wine. For more than 25 years, the Mills family has been producing world class wines on their family estate overlooking Lake Wanaka. Like many New...
State Highway 6, Gibbston Valley, Queenstown 9384, New Zealand
Bungee jumping was invented in New Zealand, so if you're going to try it anywhere in the world, shouldn't it be at the world's first commercial bungee site? With a 140-foot drop from an old bridge straddling a beautiful turquoise river, the...
86 Mt Cook Road (SH80), Lake Pukaki, South Canterbury 7944, New Zealand
Luke, the proprietor of the Mt. Cook Lakeside Retreat, insists on meeting us at the top of the 1.5 km driveway to escort us down. Guests are required to have snow chains or a four wheel drive vehicle to make it the rest of the way down the icy,...
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