8 REASONS TO FALL IN LOVE WITH NZ
If you're a nature lover, then a trip to New Zealand will provide you with a treasure trove of activities that you can tick off your bucket list. One of the best ways to see the country is by travelling with Kiwi Experience along their vast network of routes with knowledgeable driver guides.
1. Punakaiki Pancake Rocks – A visit to Pancake Rocks on the northwest corner of the South Island certainly demonstrates the power of nature. Best viewed at high tide when the thundering waves push through blowholes between layered rocks carved by the wind and sea, this spectacular area is easily accessed with walking paths and viewing platforms providing plenty of photo opportunities. While you're here, why not take the opportunity to join an environmental and wildlife conservation project?
2. Lake Tekapo – In the centre of the South Island, framed by majestic mountains, are the turquoise blue waters of Lake Tekapo, one of the destinations on the Southern Roundup. The settings of the lake change along with the seasons of the southern hemisphere; from the snowy whites of winter, to the fiery reds of autumn leaves and colourful blooms of lupines in summer, the shores of this beautiful lake are meant for long scenic walks by day and stargazing at night.
3. Tongariro Alpine Crossing – This spectacular tramping track in Tongariro National Park, south of Lake Taupo on the Northern Roundup, is not for the faint-hearted, but those who do push through will be rewarded with a stark volcanic landscape rich in natural beauty and cultural significance. With active fumaroles, emerald lakes and volcanic craters, this exhilarating and unique walk is certainly one worth talking about.
4. The Catlins – Head Deep South, almost as far south as you can go, and you'll find yourself on the Catlin Coast, scattered with endless rivers, waterfalls and beautiful coastal bays. Wildlife lovers will be delighted to spy out Elephant Seals and Hooker's Sea Lions from the headland at Nugget Point, and don't miss the 180-million year old fossilised forest at Curio Bay, or the majestic Cathedral Caves at Waipati Beach.
5. Nelson Lakes National Park – See New Zealand at its best with a stop at Nelson Lakes National Park. A peaceful place with an untouched quality, the area around Lake Rotoiti and Lake Rotoroa is surrounded by beautiful beech forests and protected by mountains. Get close to abundant bird and wildlife as you go tramping, fishing, and boating amid stunning scenery and crystal clear waters.
6. Franz Josef Glacier – Any nature lover is going to appreciate the brilliance of the fantastic Franz Josef Glacier with its ice flow from the Southern Alps, through the rainforest, to the sea. Purchase the Naturemax pack and walk through the glacier valley or take a scenic flight for a spectacular view of this river of ice, and then warm yourself in the Glacier Hot Pools for an experience you won't forget.
7. Milford Sound – Undoubtedly one of the best known places in New Zealand, Milford Sound in Fiordland National Park offers many opportunities for nature lovers to explore an area carved by glaciers. Cruise amid waterfalls tumbling down sheer cliffs and go on a journey through Fiordland National Park with the Milford Explorer pass. Get even closer to the surface of the water in a sea kayak and you may spot the plentiful dolphins, seals and penguins that inhabit this area.
8. Abel Tasman National Park – One of New Zealand's most popular destinations, the Abel Tasman National Park offers green forests, turquoise bays and golden beaches and is one of South Island's "gotta do's". Take a guided kayak along the beautiful coast and explore sea caves and islands that are home to nesting cormorants and local seal colonies.
No matter where you go in New Zealand, you will be awestruck by its' tremendous beauty. For nature lovers worldwide, there's a whole heap of spots across the country to make up your extraordinary bucket list, and create memories for life.
We have some great nature lover activity packs for those who want to get out and really explore this beautiful country. Check out of activities page for more details.