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NEW ZEALAND IN 20 QUIRKY FACTS

Posted by Shannon Gillard on 8 January 2016

​SMALL, UNIQUE AND JUST A LITTLE BIT QUIRKY, HERE'S 20 FUN NEW ZEALAND FACTS TO PULL OUT, HEADING FROM NORTH TO SOUTH:

 

1. NINETY MILE BEACH

ninety-mile-beach-north-island-new-zealand

This famously long beach is actually 55miles or 88km long. There's still more than enough space for you to body-board down the beach's towering sand dunes.

 

2. BAY OF ISLANDS

Blue sky and 144 islands what you're after? A 2006 study found that the Bay of Islands has the world's second bluest sky – second only to the bluer-skied Rio de Janeiro.

 

3. AUCKLAND

Known as "the city of sails" Auckland is the largest Polynesian city in the world and also has the highest number of boats per capita worldwide.

 

4. CATHEDRAL COVE COROMANDEL

cathedral-cove-two-caves-linking-two-beaches-new-zealand

A natural cave linking two beaches in this stunning marine reserve, Cathedral Cove has been immortalised on the big screen, featuring in one of the Narnia films, and more recently in Macklemore & Ryan Lewis's "Can't Hold Us" music video.

 

5. WAITOMO

Famous for the small sparkling creatures found in its caves, glow worms aren't actually a worm but a type of larva. The hungrier the larva, the brighter they glow!

 

6. MATAMATA / HOBBITON

The beer drunk during the filming of The Hobbit was a 1% dark stout, custom made by New Zealand brewers.

 

7. TAUPO

great-lake-taupo-volcano-north-island-new-zealand

New Zealand's largest lake (which is the same size as Singapore) holds the title of largest known volcanic eruption. The eruption in 186AD blew out so much ash it turned skies as far as China red.

 

8. ROTORUA

Definitely a quirky kiwi invention, the Zorb, a giant rubber ball which you're secured inside before rolling downhill, was created in Rotorua and can reach speeds of up to 50km/hr.

 

9. ROTORUA X2

Our iconic bird the kiwi, lays the largest eggs in relation to body size of any type of bird in the world. With nostrils at the end of its beak it is also the only bird that has a sense of smell.

 

10. WELLINGTON

capital-city-windy-wellington-new-zealand

Our cool capital is the world's most southern capital city – and possibly the windiest too!

 

11. NELSON

The stunning Blue Lake in Nelson National park is officially the clearest water in the world with visibility up to a huge 80m.

 

12. PUNAKAIKI

Famous for the Pancakes Rocks, these limestone formations resemble towering grey stacks of the fluffy breakfast food. Formed 30 million years ago on the seabed floor, the elements have since worn away at softer parts of the rocks to leave these pancake shaped formations.

 

13. FOX GLACIER

fox-glacier-in-the-south-island-of-new-zealand

Quick like a fox you could say, the 13km long Fox Glacier moves at 10 times the speed of any other valley glacier worldwide.

 

14. KAIKOURA

Whale-watching capital of the country, Kaikoura has no shortage of marine life. One of the few places where Giant Sperm Whales are found close to land, this is owes to the massive 3km deep Kaikoura Canyon just offshore. The canyon creates an unusual sea current with a rich marine food chain, meaning plenty of fish for these giants to feast on!

 

15. QUEENSTOWN

extreme-sports-bungee-jumping-in-queenstown-new-zealand

Fitting that the capital of extreme sports is also the birthplace of modern bungee jumping. It was at Kawarau Bridge in Queenstown where AJ Hackett launched the very first commercial bungee jump in 1988.

 

16. AORAKI / MOUNT COOK

Standing at 3754m high Mount Cook is New Zealand's highest mountain. In Maori Aoraki means 'cloud piercer'. Strike it on a good day and you'll get to see it in all it's magnificent mountain glory. On more cloudy days it tends to get covered by clouds, rather than piercing them!

 

17. MILFORD SOUND

With an average rainfall of 6,813mm (268in) Milford Sound is one of the wettest places on earth. However there's a reason it's one of New Zealand's most stunning attractions, all this rain means dozens of gushing waterfalls and a lush rainforest year-around.

 

18. AKAROA HARBOUR

Found only in New Zealand, Hector's dolphins are the world's smallest and rarest dolphin. Your best chance of seeing these friendly creatures is in Akaroa near Christchurch.

 

19. CENTRAL OTAGO

central-otago-beautiful-wine-region-new-zealand

Home to the world's southern most wine region it's also the hottest, coldest and driest part of the country!

 

20. DUNEDIN

It's no easy stroll home if you live on Baldwin Street, the world's steepest street at 38 degrees. It hosts the annual Jaffa race, where 75,000 orange coated chocolate candies are released at the top of the street.

 

THESE QUIRKY FACTS ARE THE JUST THE BEGINNING OF WHAT YOU CAN FIND OUT ABOUT NEW ZEALAND AND ALL IT HAS TO OFFER. TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT HOW TO GET AROUND AND SEE SOME OF THESE AMAZING PLACES, CHECK OUT OUR INCREDIBLE KIWI EXPERIENCE BUS PASSES WHICH WILL LAST YOU AN ENTIRE YEAR!

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