New Zealand Travel Guide

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Ask me about my favorite country, and chances are I’ll tell you that it’s New Zealand. I’ve been to the country a handful of times, and even studied abroad in Wellington for a semester during university. I love this country for its stunning landscapes, laid-back vibes, and friendly people.

New Zealand quick facts

Population: 4.7 million

Language: English, Maori, and NZ Sign Language

Currency: New Zealand Dollar (NZD)

Capital city: Wellington

Country size: 103,483 sq. miles

High season: Summer (December-March)

Getting around New Zealand

The best way to get around New Zealand is by car or campervan. Roads are well-maintained, and it’s fairly easy to get from one point to another.

If you don’t want to rent a car, you can also get to most places by bus or train. NakedBus and InterCity are bus companies that I’ve used many times – if you book in advance you can often get good deals.

You can also fly between all of New Zealand’s major cities. Keep an eye on grabaseat for good domestic deals.

Where to stay in New Zealand

New Zealand has a nice mixture of hotels, hostels, and B&Bs to choose from, depending on your travel style and budget. Camping is also popular in NZ, with tons of campsites dotted all over the country.

Check out some of my personal recommendations in the New Zealand section of my Where to Stay page.

New Zealand posts

Here are all the posts I’ve published about New Zealand, arranged based on city/region. Or you can scroll down and see them all listed in reverse order from when they were published.


The Ultimate New Zealand Bucket List
6 Ways to Save Money While Traveling in New Zealand
Packing for a Trip to New Zealand
New Zealand Smackdown: North Island vs. South Island
15 Things You Might Not Know About New Zealand
5 Middle-Earth Locations You Can Visit in Real Life
Lupin-Spotting in New Zealand
DOs and DON’Ts for a New Zealand Road Trip
Things I Love (and Hate) About New Zealand
Top Things to Eat and Drink in NZ
5 Roads Less Traveled in New Zealand
Exploring Middle-Earth with Red Carpet Tours


4 Things You Should Do in Northland


A Day Trip to Waiheke Island
Adventure in the Sky in Auckland (Doing the SkyWalk and SkyJump)
Hakas, Rucks and Scrums, Oh My! Attending a NZ Rugby Match
Visiting Hobbiton (Yes, This Place is REAL!)
Hunting for Trolls in Piopio


Discovering the Coromandel Peninsula


Rotorua: Smelly, But Awesome (Things to do in Rotorua)
Let’s Go Zorbing!
Top 5 Things to do in Taupo

Wellington Region

My Favorite Spots in Wellington
In Search of Seals in Wellington
Conservation on Kapiti Island
Cultures Converging at Rangiatea Church
Visiting Windy, Beautiful Castlepoint
Walking the Paths of the Dead

Marlborough Region

Hiking New Zealand’s Queen Charlotte Track


Fantasy Meets Reality on a Mountaintop in NZ (A helicopter tour)


Dolphin Encounter: Swimming With Wild Dolphins in Kaikoura
Up Close and Personal With New Zealand Fur Seals
4 Reasons You Should Visit Kaikoura

Christchurch/Canterbury Region

Christchurch — A ‘Munted’ City
Akaroa, Je T’aime
Going Wild For Wildlife on an Akaroa Harbor Cruise
Hiking to Edoras
Riding the Rails in NZ — The TranzAlpine
Hiking the Hooker Valley Track at Mount Cook

West Coast

What the Hell is There to do in Greymouth, Anyway?
Adventure on New Zealand’s Franz Josef Glacier
Striking it Rich – Gold Panning in Ross

Dunedin/the South

Climbing the Steepest Street in the World (Baldwin St.)
NZ Drives: Southern Scenic Route


6 Reasons You Shouldn’t Skip Wanaka
Hiking the Rocky Mountain Track
The Best Way to Visit Milford Sound: From Wanaka!

Queenstown Region

Queenstown is King — A Guide to NZ’s Most Popular City
Which Bungee is Best in Queenstown?
The Scariest Thing I Have Ever Done (Bungy jumping the Nevis)
The Shotover Jet — A Thrilling Jetboat Ride
The Maori Legend of Lake Wakatipu
Photo Essay: Taking the Bus from Queenstown to Christchurch


Milford Sound: Eighth Wonder of the World?
Doubtful Sound: Milford Sound’s Underrated Little Brother
New Zealand Fjord Smackdown: Milford Sound vs. Doubtful Sound

Posts about traveling in New Zealand