Discover New Zealand’s hidden spots to practice outdoors activities in the most exotic and unique atmosphere
Capital city: Maori’s capital,Wellington is also often cited as the coolest capital of the world and like the most of New Zealand’s cities, you can practice many sports (surf, canoeing, mountain biking, or even hiking in the surrounding hills … ).
A few miles north, Auckland, the economic capital and largest city of the country is the city of love. You will love its parks, its mild climate and its ideal location in a bay surronded by preserved islands. Still is not such a beautiful city…
Regions: 17 regions divided into two islands: the North and the South Island
Currency New Zealand Dollar: you can find banks and exchange offices in all cities. 1NZD ~ € 0.62 (2014)
Language – English and Maori: Kiwis want to keep their cultural heritage and the Maori language
Transportation: You have several choices: Flights, Rail and Buses will take you to the four corners of the country.
The most popular bus companies are:
Intercity: with coverage of the whole territory and passes at attractive prices.
Naked bus : company more focused on the transport of backpackers offers attractive packages
Kiwi expérience: also oriented backpackers with an offer of destinations more restrained.
But you’ll also find other specialized companies on certain routes on the South Island, for example.
Remember to book in advance on-line and you will find interesting prices! Indeed, some bus companies offer trips for only $ 1 !!
If you prefer to rent a car, you can book with an international company such as Europcar, Avis, Hertz or another … However, local companies often offer much better rates sometimes with the possibility to rent old but still good cars.
We can advise you: Nzrentacar, pegasus, ace rental car, apex, jucy, go rentals , omega …
Note however that price may be very different especially concerning the insurance, be sure to check if you are covered by your credit card (Visa covers you fort 31 days and Gold Mastercard for 60 days) and read twice your insurance notice because it does not necessarily cover the purchase of the franchise.
If you stay more than 3 months, we advise you to buy a car there you can find interesting rates! Note that the insurance is not mandatory in New Zealand but we recommend you to have one !
Finally, if you want to hit the road in quest for adventure in New Zealand better option is to travel in an equipped van equipped or camper. Several companies are on the market with competitive prices. Unfortunately during the summer (yep it is in the summer that we all want to go on hollydays ) rates increase drastically. Please note, credit card insurance do not cover vehicles over 3.5T or caravans.
If you want to cross New Zealand in 24h but almost for free, you can opt for conveying a van (bring the van to the city of departure) Sometimes you have the fuel for free! Find other tips on this site.
Electricity: 230 V, 50 Hz
Accommodation: You will find hotels, hostels, campsites and B & B at prices ranging from 20 to 300 dollars and lot more for luxury hotels and resorts.
If you have a motorhome or campervan, you will also find many places for free camping but respect the instructions and parck only where is permitted otherwise you’ll have to pay a fine!
The DOC campsites often offer spots situated in heavenly places at unbeatable prices. You will be surrounded by nature, sun and happy people :). New Zealand is the best destination if you like camping!
Food : New Zealand’s cuisine has long been based on English food but today the country offers a variety of fine cuisine combining salty and sweet meat.
Hiking of course! The land of the long white cloud is the hiker’s paradise with many tracks for a few hours to several days! Many sites list the most beautiful hikes in the country. We recommend the DOC site or NZ’s tourism office website and tramper NZ.
Mountain bikers and cyclotourismes will not be disappointed by this country that offers many tracks for all levels. NZ by bike contains the bests of the country, you may visit also NZ’s tourism office which also gives many ideas for outings..
New Zealand also has many spots for diving and snorkeling in particular on the east coast of the North Island (Coromandel, The Auckland Bay, Goat Island, Great Barrier Island …).
The country offers the possibility of an unlimited number of canoe trips (rivers, estuaries, sea and fjords). You can do of the Greats Walks, the Wanganui River, in canoe!
Kiwis are mad about watersports, New Zealand skippers have also won the America’s Cup in recent years! So you can try the sailing but also catamaran, windsurfing, kitesurfing and many other water sports …
For those in search of adrenaline, rafting, bungee jumping, canyoning and other New Zealand’s fun activities will delight you. The South Island is particularly known for adrenaline activities!
For adrenaline seekers you can do parachute : New Zealand parachute Federation
You also can do skiing in winter season in south island and even heliski (you’ll be droped in helicopter at the top of the mountains) : HeliPark New Zealand.
The most popular sports:
Rugby comes on top but also cricket and netball are very popular
New Zealand is well known for its extreme sports: bungee jumping, skydiving …
When to go?
New Zealand is beautiful in every season but we advise you to visit it in summer from December to March unless you prefer winter sports. The North Island has a warmer, often described as semi-tropical climate. The South Island has a cooler and wetter weather especially in New Zealand Mountains.
Tourists of several countries (56 countries) did not need a visa to visit the country if the stay is inferior to 3 months. All you need is a valid passport, a valid return ticket and sufficient funds to travel.
If your country does not have an agreement signed with New Zealand you must make a demand for a visa which costs 110 or 140 NZD depending on the location of the applicant.
Find more information on the New Zealand’s immigration website.
Focus on the SOL region
The Coromandel region: You can find many sports and activities in breathtaking spots.
In the footsteps of Sportrotters
- Swimming with seals
- Tongariro Northern Circuit
- Outdoor activities in the Marlborough Sounds
- Kayaking with seals and dolphins
- Kayaking and snorkeling at Cathedral Cove
- Mountain biking in the Redwoods
- Whanganui Journey: unforgettable canoe trip
- Hike in the Pinnacles
- Giant Kauris on the West Coast
- Hauraki rail trail
- Top 3 outdoor activities around Auckland
- Waipu caves
- Paragliding in New Zealand
- Mangawhai heads trail
- The Cape Reinga for the sportrotters
- Outdoor activities at Tutukaka