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Outdoor enthusiasts flock to Queenstown for heart-pumping sports: kayaking,... more
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Queenstown
Outdoor enthusiasts flock to Queenstown for heart-pumping sports: kayaking, bungee jumping, jetboating, white-water rafting, hiking and skiing. More mild-mannered adventurers can take a quiet cruise through nearby Milford Sound, part of the Fjordland National Park World Heritage area, or sample South Island pinot noir from one of the region's 75 wineries. But for many, the biggest attraction of this Travellers' Choice Award-winning resort town is its role in cinema history: much of the Lord of the Rings film trilogy was filmed in the area.
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Far more than a base camp for New Zealand exploration, the "City of 100 Lovers",... more
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Auckland
Far more than a base camp for New Zealand exploration, the "City of 100 Lovers", as it is called in the Maori language, offers top-notch museums, scenic islands and a richly diverse cultural mix. Free City Circuit buses circle city-centre locations. Experience Maori influences at Auckland Museum, find Polynesian handicrafts at Otara Market or people-watch in bustling Ponsonby and Parnell. Outdoor enthusiasts will find a mélange of adventure, from kayaking and sailing to high-octane bungee jumping.
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Sample the beloved vintages of the Marlborough Wine Region in Blenheim, an... more
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Blenheim
Sample the beloved vintages of the Marlborough Wine Region in Blenheim, an agricultural town in the heart of New Zealand’s renowned wine hub. More than 20 wineries are just a hop, skip and a corkscrew away from Blenheim, where a stream of cafes and restaurants serve up tasty, artisan fare. One of the sunniest towns in New Zealand, Blenheim is the perfect destination for foodies and wine lovers who love to soak up the sun while sipping the fruits of a vineyard’s labour.
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Rotorua's rotten-egg aroma is the only downside to its position on a volcanic... more
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Rotorua
Rotorua's rotten-egg aroma is the only downside to its position on a volcanic fault line. With 13 freshwater lakes within 20 minutes, Rotorua is all about getting outside - and getting muddy. There is a profusion of places to experience bubbling mud and geysers in "Rotovegas", the area at the top of Fenton Street. Once you've made the most of the mud, soar nearly 2000 feet on the Skyline Gondola for views of Lake Rotorua. Discover the lakes by paddle steamer, fishing charter or WWII amphibious vehicle.
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Nelson’s thriving arts and music scene has helped to establish it as a... more
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Nelson
Nelson’s thriving arts and music scene has helped to establish it as a destination for free spirits and art-lovers. Festivals, studios, galleries, craft markets… Every cranny of this South Island city seems to buzz with artistic energy. Lord of the Rings fans will flip for the Jens Hansen workshop in Trafalgar Square—Hansen is the goldsmith who designed the “precious” guarded by Frodo in the LOTR films.
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This adrenaline-pumping city offers an abundance of skydiving, jetboating and... more
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Taupo
This adrenaline-pumping city offers an abundance of skydiving, jetboating and bungee jumping. Discover the marvels of Orakei Korako thermal park, featuring caves, hot springs and boiling mud pools. Gaze across Lake Taupo to see the spectacular volcanic mountains of Tongariro National Park, and make sure to visit Huka Falls, one of the great watery wonders of New Zealand.
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If you like Art Deco architecture, you must visit Napier. The town was... more
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Napier
If you like Art Deco architecture, you must visit Napier. The town was completely destroyed by an earthquake in 1931, then completely rebuilt in gorgeous Art Deco style. A number of local wineries also offer tours and tastings.
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The South Island town of Wanaka appeals to both adventure lovers and... more
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Wanaka
The South Island town of Wanaka appeals to both adventure lovers and relaxation-minded travellers. Situated on the crystal-clear waters of New Zealand's fourth-largest lake, just a short drive from Mount Aspiring National Park, Wanaka is an ideal spot to go fishing, hiking, skiing, wine-tasting or golfing. The city also hosts Warbirds Over Wanaka, the largest three-day air show in the Southern Hemisphere.
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The seaside town of Russell is one of the most popular destinations in New... more
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Russell
The seaside town of Russell is one of the most popular destinations in New Zealand’s Bay of Islands. The area teems with a mash-up of indigenous and European history, evident in its architecture and historic sites. Sail around the bay on a chartered yacht or iconic tall ship or explore the multiple personalities of The Gables 1847, which has served as a bakery, bordello and shelter for AWOL sailors on the lam.
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The lush parks and golden beaches of Tauranga make it a popular destination for... more
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Tauranga
The lush parks and golden beaches of Tauranga make it a popular destination for outdoorsy folks and watersports lovers. Here on New Zealand’s North Island, you’ll find a variety of opportunities for surfing, white water rafting, kiteboarding, hiking and golfing. Take a refreshing dip in the swimming holes by Kaiate Falls, which cascade beautifully over the bluffs. Families might like to visit one of Tauranga’s amusement park, take a guided nature tour or swim with dolphins in the Bay of Plenty.
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