It’s summer in New Zealand, the best time to visit the land of the Māori! During this season, hordes of travellers plan a trip to this beautiful island nation. So why should you miss the boat?
To help you stay ahead of the game, and have the most stirring trip, we have curated a list of places that you must stop at when visiting New Zealand in the summer months.
During the summer, New Zealand offers tourists a plethora of things to do and scenes to admire. If you are always on the lookout for the thrill of an adventure, then New Zealand will open new avenues for you. Surfing, trekking, dolphin safaris, sailing, dune boarding, you can try it all. However, for those who are hard-pressed for time, listing out the main attractions can be a great help to ensure that you don’t miss the best sights and spots. That's where we come in! Here are some of the main attractions that you must explore when in New Zealand during summer months:
Do you want to get overwhelmed and inspired by silence and beauty? Do you wish to experience therapeutic the blue waters and the calming sea breeze? If your answer is 'yes' right now, then you must visit the Bay of Islands. From kayaking to bathing with dolphins, this constellation of secluded islands will take your breath away.
Here’s why the Bay of Islands will also interest history buffs: It was here that the natives of New Zealand (The Māoris) and the Europeans signed the Waitangi Treaty, the declaration of colonial rule over New Zealand.
To experience the delights of a life without a laptop and a phone, stop over at Raglan. The town is sparsely populated, which adds to its charm among city dwellers. The Ngarunui Beach in Raglan is a black-sand beauty that finds its way into gorgeous photographs taken by happy visitors. It is a surfer’s haven, and is also recommended for those who are just beginning to ride the waves.
At the doorway leading to Raglan, you find the Bridal Veil Falls. This natural marvel is an absolute stunner. Hop onto one of the two viewing platforms to witness its beauty and the tranquillity of the surrounding countryside.
If you are an art lover, and find yourself in Raglan, you are in luck. This place is home to a number of artists, particularly sculptors and painters. In January, Raglan hosts its annual arts weekend that exhibits artwork by local artists.
During low tide, the Hot Water Beach in the Coromandel peninsula allows you to dig up your own hot tub and jump into it. Make sure you leave your slippers and all the troubles of the world outside to make the most of it. For those who are curious, the water here is heated by the two volcanic hot water springs found on the East Coast.
Speak to anyone who had a great time in New Zealand and they will tell you about Cathedral Cove. To reach the cove, you have two choices that include kayaking there or walking it. Regardless of how you get there, the journey is surreal.
To witness the world’s first sunrise, you should drop by Gisborne. Since it is the first city in the world to observe sunrise, it means it is the first city to enter a new year. How about landing in Gisborne on the 31st to be among the first ones to welcome the new year? Sounds like quite a plan! Do not forget your boogie boards though, for a waterfall slip and slide at Rere Rockslides.
Cycling around the waterfront in Gisborne, you will come across several historical places that tell you about the colonial history of the place. If the Thoreau in you wants to walk, then consider strolling in the National Arboretum of New Zealand which is located in Gisborne. The arboretum shelters some of the most unique trees found in the Northern Hemisphere.
Climbing the Tongariro Crossing has to be on the top of your New Zealand summer activity list. What makes this trek such a singled out experience are the colours you get to notice along the way. From red craters to pulsating green and azure lakes, this experience has been dubbed heavenly by many tourists. When here, you will not want to blink even once for fear of missing something gorgeous.
That’s not it. The biking trails in Tongariro National Park are unmissable too. The Old Coach Road, which is a 15km trail is a favourite amongst travellers, and we assure you that it is worth the hype.
If after experiencing and embracing all this beauty, you are inspired to hike some more, then consider the one to Tama Lakes. Having two mighty mountains, Mt Ngauruhoe and Ruapehu in the background, is sure to give you all the zeal you need for this three-hour hike.
To feel like you have been transported to Tolkien’s universe, take a trip to Queenstown. Straight out of a fantasy novel, this is where The Hobbit and The Lord of the Ring trilogies were shot. It is not unusual for movie aficionados to have on their bucket list a specialised tour of all the locations that were filmed in the trilogies.
Queenstown is also considered the adventure capital, not just of New Zealand, but of the world. It is home to Shotover Canyon Swing that allows you the thrill of swinging off the edge of the highest cliff in the world. Consider visiting Central Otago next to explore some of the 80 wineries there. The sights are even more majestic with a glass of pinot noir in hand!
Who doesn’t adore penguins? In Auckland, you get a chance to observe the largest penguin colony in the world. If you are more into sharks, then you can even book a dive to swim with them!
Kayaking to a particular island is something most tourists boast about once they return from New Zealand! If you plan to go Rangitoto Island, then make sure you trek to the summit. You will come across several species of birds along the way, so be sure to carry your camera. Once on top, the most spectacular view of the Auckland islands is bound to leave you gasping.
The summer months are the best in New Zealand, which is why most travellers plan their holidays around this time. If you are one of those smart people, then this list of the main attractions to visit should surely be something that will come in handy.