"Land of the long white cloud"
100% Pure New Zealand
Tourism New Zealand
The Tourism New Zealand website newzealand.com is the official tourism website for New Zealand.
It features information that is relevant to travellers who are thinking about and actively planning a visit to New Zealand.
New Zealand is a young country - In fact, New Zealand was the last large and habitable place in the world to be discovered!
Here is a brief history of our nation.
First to arrive in New Zealand. Maori discovered New Zealand as they explored the Pacific, navigating by ocean currents and the winds and stars.
The first Europeans:
The first European to arrive in New Zealand was the Dutch explorer Abel Tasman in 1642.
That is how we got the Dutch-sounding name - from a Dutch mapmaker who first called us Nieuw Zeeland.
British and French
A surprisingly long time passed - 127 years - before New Zealand was visited by another European, Captain James Cook. He came in 1769 on the first of three voyages.
European whalers and sealers started visiting regularly and then came traders.
Treaty of Waitangi signed
Eventually, at Waitangi on 6 February 1840, William Hobson, New Zealand’s first Governor, invited assembled Māori chiefs to sign a treaty with the British Crown.
The treaty was taken all round the country, as far south as Foveaux Strait, for signing by local chiefs. Eventually, more than 500 chiefs signed the treaty - now known as the Treaty of Waitangi.
The New Zealand wars
Māori came under increasing pressure from European settlers to sell their land for settlement.
This led to conflict and, in the 1860s, war broke out in the North Island. Much Māori land was confiscated or bought during or after 20 years of war.
Social change, war and independence:
Rights for women and workers
In 1893, New Zealand became the first country in the world to grant all women the right to vote.
State pensions and state housing for workers were also offered first in New Zealand.
New Zealand becomes a dominion
We were also increasingly conscious of our own nationalism. In 1901, we declined the chance to join the Australian Federation. Instead, New Zealand became an independent 'dominion' in 1907.
World War I and the ANZACs
Thousands of New Zealanders served, and died, overseas in the First World War.
The 1915 landing at Gallipoli in Turkey is regarded as a coming of age for our country. It established the tradition of ANZAC (Australian and New Zealand Army Corps) and a pride in New Zealand’s military achievement and its special relationship with Australia.
ANZAC Day, commemorating the Gallipoli landing, is a public holiday on April 25 each year and is marked with increasingly well-attended ceremonies. To explain the history of the day and its significance to New Zealand today, WW100 has created brief guides, translated into 3 languages.
Meanwhile, the South Island settlements prospered.
Sheep farming was established on extensive grasslands and Canterbury became the country’s wealthiest province.
Gold was discovered in Otago in 1861 and then on the West Coast, helping to make Dunedin New Zealand’s largest town.
In the 1870s, the government helped thousands of British people start a new life in New Zealand. Railways were built and towns sprang up or expanded.
In 1882, the first shipment of frozen meat from New Zealand made it successfully to England. Exporting meat, butter and cheese (chilled) became possible and New Zealand became a key supplier for Britain. With an economy based on agriculture, much of the forest that originally covered New Zealand was cleared for farmland.
Expanding trade and cultural diversity:
When Britain joined the European Economic Community in 1973, New Zealand had already begun diversifying its export trade.
Losing such an important and assured market for our farm products was a blow. That event has encouraged New Zealand to widen its outlook. We now sell our farm goods and many other exports to a wide range of countries.
Culturally, we have also become more diverse. Particularly from the 1980s, a wide range of ethnic groups have been encouraged to settle here and New Zealand is now much more multicultural.
According to data from the national Census (2013), 25% of people living in New Zealand were born abroad, 15% are Māori, over 12% are Asian and over 7% are from Pacific Islands nations.
Hindi is the fourth most common language in New Zealand, after English, Māori and Samoan.
New Zealand History online provides more in-depth information on New Zealand's history.
ON THE STREET
New Zealand is a vibrant country and full of personality!
We have put together some common slang terms which may help you connect with some of the locals on your travels.
She'll be right
Aye ? – "You like icecream aye!?
"Aye" can be used in most sentences.
Yeah Nah – “Do you want to go for a run? “Yeah Nah, I’ll be right.”
"Yeah Nah" is used when you're not completely sure of the question or situation.
Bugger – *Something is not right* Bugger!”
You can use bugger when something goes wrong. - Like Uh Oh or Oh No!
"I'm heading out to the the wops”
A place in the middle of nowhere, normally forestry areas.
“I kicked the door and my toe is munted"
"Munted" has many meanings but is normally used when something is broken.
She’ll be right – “There's a hole in your gumboot, you'll get wet feet!"
"Nah, she’ll be right”
When something is going to be just fine.
"That concert was Choice!"
When something is great and you are really enjoying yourself.
– “Shall we go camping on the weekend??” “Yes, I'm Keen”
When you are excited and interested
to do something.
To be intensely enthusiastic & excited about New Zealand & knowing there is no limit
to what you can do here.
Driving in New Zealand
You can legally drive in New Zealand for 12 months if you have either a current full driver’s licence from your home country in the English language or an International Driving Permit.
You must carry your licence or permit at all times when driving and you are only able to drive the same types of vehicles you are licensed to drive in your home country.
**In New Zealand we drive on the Left-hand side of the road**
Is your driving license valid in New Zealand?
For national highway updates and further information about New Zealand transport you can visit the Automobile Association (AA) website here:
There are three long distance train routes in New Zealand
and a handful of shorter scenic rail experiences.
Buses & Coaches
New Zealand has daily scheduled passenger bus services available throughout the country.
There are also backpacker coach networks and many other coach companies serving the major tourist routes.
New Zealand's #1 National Bus Line:
Multiple Travel Passes
There are passes that cover the national Intercity coach network, the three scenic rail journeys and combine rail and Cook Strait ferry passage.
Cook Strait Ferries
Bluebridge and Interislander operate Cook Strait ferry services between Wellington in the North Island
and Picton in the South Island.
It is recommend that you pre-book if travelling with a Vehicle.
Some rental car companies offer vehicle swaps
between these places.
The most popular places to board a cruise to New Zealand
are Australia and the South Pacific.
Options for day trips depend on the port that
you are docking at.
The New Zealand Crusie Association has regular updates
about Cruises and links to further cruise information