With picturesque mountains, a beautiful coastline, delicious vegan cuisine, and unique culture, there are countless reasons to visit New Zealand or even make it your next home. As the folks at the Moving to New Zealand, (https://movingtonewzealand.com/) can attest, this wondrous place is an amazing destination.

Here, we explore a short guide of unique things to see, do, and—of course—eat in New Zealand.

1. Discover Tongariro National Park

As the country’s oldest national park, Tongariro has become a popular place to vacation, explore, and dine. With year-round hiking, biking, water, and snow activities, the possibilities are endless, and the scenery is incredibly memorable. Three active volcanoes call this park home, including Mount Ngauruhoe, also known as Mount Doom. It most recently erupted in 1977. The site provides stunning year-round scenery that never disappoints.

2. Savor the Food

In today’s world with veganism on the rise, you can find animal product-free food everywhere if you look hard enough; and New Zealand is certainly no exception. Despite the booming dairy industry and hunting and fishing Kiwi culture, it’s estimated that around 10% of the NZ population are now vegetarian and that number is steadily increasing.

There are vegan eateries all over the country for cruelty-free travelers. Check out some of our favorite restaurants: The Lotus Heart in Christchurch, the Sunflower Thai restaurant in Auckland, and the Pranah Café in Wellington. 

3. Go Underground Kayaking and Cave Rafting

On the West Coast, Waitomo offers an amazing assortment of underground adventures, including underground kayaking and cave rafting, also known as “blackwater rafting.” On “glow worm cave tours,” glowing displays illuminate the cave formations on these daring, memorable adventures. It’s the perfect combination of natural marvels and pure adrenaline.

4. Visit Hobbiton

Lord of the Rings fans can’t visit the area without spending time in Matamata, where Tolkienists can tour the Hobbiton movie set. A highlight of Hobbiton is The Green Dragon™ Inn, where visitors taste the traditional apple cider and ginger beer while enjoying a view of the enchanting village. The Shire’s Rest™ Café provides a tranquil place where guests can enjoy excellent coffee and traditional food.

5. Tour a Sheep Farm

New Zealand is home to an estimated 30 million sheep. Visitors have the opportunity to tour or even stay overnight at sheep farms in the area, including the Wilderness Lodges: a 4000-acre property featuring 3000 sheep, 120 angus cattle, and many other animals.

6. Experience Huka Falls

When the Waikato River narrows in order to enter a shallow area of hard volcanic rock, the result is quite phenomenal: Huka Falls. This area of natural hydro power propels over 220,000 liters of water in a single second. Visitors can hike through Spa Park to reach the Huka Falls Trail, which offers several breathtaking views of the waterfall—you’ll hear the falls before you see them.

7. Head to the Market

A wide assortment of farmers’ markets is one of the plentiful reasons that so many people consider moving to New Zealand. The Matakana area is home to boutique food shops and several wineries. Foodies also rave about Harbourside Market, which is the oldest market in Wellington. It’s one of the best destinations for fresh fruits and vegetables so you can refuel after a day’s exploring.

8. Try Zorbing

The original Zorbing destination was established in Rotorua. Yes, we said zorbing (also known as globe-riding, orbing, or sphereing). Adults and children can experience the rolling hills and scenic waterways of New Zealand while sealed in a large, inflatable plastic ball. It’s a new kind of adrenaline rush… because why should your hamster have all of the fun?

So, whether it’s your first trip to NZ or you return every year, don’t miss some of these amazing activities on your next visit. If you love to check out local markets or make friends with the wildlife, this is a destination that should be high on your list. Don’t forget, if you are thinking of moving to New Zealand, check out this site: https://movetonewzealand.net/

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