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AFAR Explorer′s Wishlist
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Mount Tarawera, Bay Of Plenty 3073, New Zealand
Near Rotorua you'll find Mount Tarawera, one of New Zealand's most recent volcanoes. Erupting in the mid-nineteenth century, it buried a Maori village and killed over 100 people. Nowadays, it lies quiet, overlooking the beautiful Lake Tarawera...
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Lake Wanaka, Otago, New Zealand
Lake Wanaka's crystal clear blue waters are perfect for jetboaters and kayakers to explore. The landscape is enhanced by the snow-capped Mt. Aspiring in the background, which can be admired even on a warm summer's day. Wanaka is a 40 minute drive...
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Lake Wakatipu, Otago, New Zealand
Autumn on the South Island of New Zealand was colorful enough to remind me of the trees at home, although back in New England, we don't have massive towering mountains looming over our deciduous foliage (I love you, White Mountains, but you ain't...
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Rangitoto Island, Auckland 1010, New Zealand
In the Hauraki Gulf, Rangitoto Island is just a short, not to mention highly enjoyable, 25-minute ferry ride from Auckand. The unpopulated island is actually a shield volcano that is the youngest (only 600 years old!) in the Auckland Volcanic...
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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...
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126 Broadway, Matamata 3400, New Zealand
If you're a fan of J.R.R. Tolkien, then you owe it to yourself to visit the Alexander Farm in New Zealand. The family-owned farm served as the movie set for Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rings trilogy, as well as the more recent The Hobbit: An...
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Rotorua, New Zealand
Before traveling to Rotorua, everyone will warn you that it smells like rotten eggs. Don't be put off, that's only because of the amazing geothermal features of the area. And the smell comes and goes, too. Sitting on a caldera, Rotorua has...
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Lake Taupo, Waikato, New Zealand
On the shores of New Zealand's largest lake sits the holiday town of Taupo, in the center of the North Island. Popular with vacationers and adventure travelers, there is plenty for everyone. An ancient volcanic crater, nowadays Taupo is a...
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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?...
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Wellington Ferry Terminal 1 Aotea Quay, Pipitea, Wellington 6011, New Zealand
Perhaps one of the most iconic kiwi experiences to be had in New Zealand is to catch the ferry between Wellington and Picton. While the Cook Strait doesn't seem too big, it actually takes around three hours to negotiate the occasionally rough seas...
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Lake Tekapo 7999, New Zealand
Lake Tekapo is a sweet little slice of heaven, and a paradise you'll have all to your own, should you visit outside the high season. The glacial waters running out of the Southern Alps are every bit as mesmerizing as they are refreshing - which is...
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This is your view from the top of the Diamond Lake Hike, which starts about 12 kilometers outside of the town of Wanaka. The views are so beautiful from the summit that it's nearly impossible to ever head back down the mountain. The track starts...
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Milford Track, Fiordland National Park 9679, New Zealand
One of the greatest walks in New Zealand, the Milford track is just over 50 kilometers and leads into the famous Milford Sound. Considered one of the most beautiful places in New Zealand, the Milford Track is categorized as one of New Zealand's...
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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...
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North Island, New Zealand
This outcropping is as scary as it doesn't look in this photo
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Cape Palliser 5772, New Zealand
Driving around the southern roads in the North Island often lulls you into believing that this pocket of New Zealand is mostly rural farmland with more sheep than you could ever imagine. Once leaving the comfort of the Wairarapa wine region, it...
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Taupo 3377, New Zealand
Near Taupo are an amazing set of waterfalls and rapids called Huka Falls. An easy walk with plenty of viewing spots, at Huka Falls the turquoise green water thunders down the Waikato River headed towards the lake. Surrounded by lush forest and...
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111 Main N Rd, Napier 4110, New Zealand
Do you ever wonder what it would feel like to be a character in the Great Gatsby? You can head over to Napier, NZ, to find out. Every year, during the third weekend in February, this small city by the sea hosts Art Deco weekend: a huge festival...
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Stewart Island, New Zealand
We found these fantastic shells—hundreds of them—on Maori Beach, which is about a three-hour hike from Oban on Stewart Island.
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Mount Maunganui, Tauranga, New Zealand
You know you’re in a great place to stand up paddle when you’ve got the option of the bay on one side and the ocean on the other. Mt. Maunganui is at the bottom tip of the C-shaped Tauranga Bay, a spot that has “holiday beach town” written all...
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Lake Pukaki, Canterbury 7999, New Zealand
A magical alpine lake on the South Island is Lake Pukaki, crystal blue and turquoise. Oftentimes in the morning it's so still it reflects a perfect mirror of the clouds. One of many glacial lakes in the area, the best view is from the southside,...
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10 Clarendon St, North Dunedin, Dunedin 9016, New Zealand
Located 10 minutes drive from the city centre, St Clair's beach is a foodie and surfer's paradise! It's also the perfect place to grab some fish and chips and watch the waves roll in...however, it's usually quite windy so watch out! The beach has...
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Raumati Beach, Paraparaumu 5032, New Zealand
Always the perfect place to watch the sunset! A truly stunning stretch of beach, popular with locals and tourists alike. Off the coast, one can see Kapiti Island, home to a number of endangered native birds and wildlife. Day trips are available...
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Arrowtown, New Zealand
Hidden away in the Otago region of the South Island near Queenstown is the historic gold mining town of Arrowtown. In the mid-nineteenth century, the town grew and grew thanks to the discovery of gold in the area. It was even home to a large...