I had the opportunity to visit New Zealand over the holidays to visit some loved ones and explore, and I would love to share some of my favourite experiences from the trip. These are my top 5 favourite experiences from New Zealand.
1. Wharariki Beach
Close to Cape Farewel, this is an absolutely stunning sandy beach. To get there, you go on a short 20-minute hike off Wharariki Road. This beach is not for swimming. It’s more of a ‘go and observe the beauty’ sort of beach. Also, there are seals. Lots and lots of seals.
This was definitely a highlight. They’ve kept the actual set from The Lord of the Rings movies up for tourists and fans of the films to walk around in and see for themselves. You can see the ‘actual’ Shire! It’s really cool. It’s hard to explain how cool this was in writing, but if you ever have the opportunity, you should go see it for yourself.
3. The Coffee Scene
In New Zealand, I discovered how much I love a flat white – if you haven’t heard of this style of coffee, it’s sort of in between a latte and a cappuccino. It’s very good. Vancouver has a pretty good coffee scene. I think New Zealand has an even better one. They have fewer chain cafes and a huge selection of successful individually owned and independent cafes. It’s great.
The capital city of New Zealand, Wellington was one of my favourite areas to visit. They have a big multicultural food scene, beaches, and is also the home of Te Papa, New Zealand’s National Museum.
5. Māori Cultural Education
The Māori are the indigenous Polynesian people of New Zealand, and their culture has been made an active part of community conscious. I have a friend who’s a teacher there, and she said that students are taught Māori history from the beginning of their education, including lessons in language and folklore. I love this.