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When travel to New Zealand comes up, you’ll often here of bungee jumping, wine tasting, white water rafting, gorgeous scenery, sheep, and Lord of the Rings. If those aren’t enough reasons to get you to want to visit the magical land of New Zealand, here are five more reasons that are less obvious – and much more underappreciated – and which may even help you stick to some of your New Year’s resolutions. Read on and then book a flight to New Zealand pronto.
Get in Shape
New Zealand has loads of outdoor space, especially on the South Island, which is three times as large as the North Island with only one-third of the people. For visitors, that means some uninterrupted time outdoors, and New Zealand is quick to supply many athletic opportunities. In Abel Tasman, you can kayak around islands and bays; in Franz Josef, you’re a short distance away from a glacier to hike; even wine country offers ways to work out as it’s easy to ride a bike around to the wineries. And don’t forget about the multitude of hiking trails in New Zealand. It’s hard to drive even a few miles on the South Island without seeing a sign for a hiking trail, whether it’s a quick 15-minute walk or an all-day 8 hour trek. There’s something for every fitness level, and you may find yourself a bit more in shape after leaving New Zealand.
You Won’t Get Eaten
South Africa has great white sharks and lions, the United States has grizzly bears and mountain lions, Cambodia has vipers, and Australia has…well, pretty much everything that can eat or poison you. It’s hard to visit a country that doesn’t have some type of animal that can easily kill you. In New Zealand, you’re in luck. Hike those trails to your heart’s content knowing that there’s nothing poisonous crawling around and that there’s not any type of big, carnivorous animal waiting behind a bush. The most annoying animal you’ll come across in New Zealand is the possum – and they’re not prone to eating people.
New Zealand is often thought of to be a wine lover’s paradise thanks to the lush vineyard-infused counties of Marlborough and Hawkes Bay. While the wine is very delicious (particularly the Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling), New Zealand also has many devotees of their breweries, and for good reason. Many New Zealand breweries boast award-winning beers and their creations are often hard to find outside the country. Try the smooth taste of Speight’s Gold Medal Ale, the “pride of the south”, which is brewed in Dunedin and is hugely popular in New Zealand . Moneith’s is another loved beer brand brewed in Greymouth that can often be found on tap in most New Zealand bars.
Your parents and grandparents no doubt often told you that fresh air is good for you, and in New Zealand, that fact reigns supreme. The air is crisp and clean, and even smells a bit different. There’s a faint trace of floral notes to it, even when you’re in one of New Zealand’s big cities like Auckland. Without toxins and pollution in the air from congested traffic and too much waste, your lungs and skin are able to breathe in the elements. Don’t be surprised if all that pure air results in a brighter, clearer complexion.
Break Your Internet Addiction
With New Zealand’s wealth of outdoor activities and views, who really wants to stay indoors all day on their laptop? But…this is the 21st century and most people have trouble truly breaking away from the World Wide Web. New Zealand makes it a bit easier to do so, though. It’s hard to find free Internet – even cafes often charge for use or only offer a limited amount of time with a store purchase. Same goes for hotels and hostels. It’s rarely included and the packages are bought, not by the minute, but by the megabyte. Meaning a few code and video heavy sites can quickly go through your allotment. Want to download a few new songs to listen to or a movie to watch in bed before going to sleep? It’ll cost you. Best to just feast your eyes and ears on the sounds and sights going on in the world outside.
Now that you know the reasons to visit New Zealand go beyond the obvious (glaciers, waterfalls, hobbits…), book that flight and be prepared to be astounded by all the facets and charm New Zealand has to offer.
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