10 Things I Love About New Zealand

I was not born in this country that I have called home these past 10 years, but have always felt welcome and loved by the people here. (Even though I’m Australian) At first I was terribly home sick and didn’t think any place could ever compare to home, but before I knew it I was beginning to love lots of things about this place. Here’s just a few that come to mind.

1. Pohutukawa Trees

Pohutukawa TreeThese beautiful coastal trees are evergreen. Around December they produce brilliant red flowers, which always make me happy. New Zealand’s own Christmas tree.

2. Feijoas

Feijoa YumYum. I’d never heard of these before coming to New Zealand but oh my. They are so yummy. Sweet and juicy, and they smell fantastic too. Lovely cold and fresh, but add to apple crumble too. The lovely thing is you never have to buy them. They grow in backyards and people hand around bags full to friends and family. (We have some overhanging our driveway and always pick them up before they get run over!)

3. Snow

Mt RuapehuJust a few hours from home. This is a bit special for me coming from a place where it’s neither cold nor elevated enough for snow.

4. The People!

He aha te mea nui o te ao?
He tangata! He tangata! He tangata!
What is the most important thing in the world?
It is people! It is people! It is people!

How can I choose a picture for this one? There are too many and I can’t choose a favourite! There are so many people groups here and I love them for different things. I love the way Kiwi’s say “aye” and are welcoming to outsiders. I love the way Maori’s laugh, and for all that I’m learning from them about whanau (family). And I love the colour and life added by the many immigrants in this city. Wouldn’t be the same without them.

5. Tip Top Ice Cream

Tip Top Cookies & CreamTip Top Hokey PokeyCookies & Cream or Hokey Pokey. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to choose my favourite. It’s just really great ice cream. Love it.

6. Our National Anthem

7. The Colour of the Sea

Bay of Islands

8. New Zealand Music

9. Auckland City

AucklandI love that the CBD is right on the waterfront. I love that there are ferries across the harbour and to the islands around the gulf. So different to my home town.

10. The Haka

Thanks New Zealand

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24 thoughts on “10 Things I Love About New Zealand

  1. Well that was indeed an interesting top ten. I have to admit I really dislike feijoas!! I don’t know what it is about them. They are just ummmm a bit gross! haha. I thought you would mention L&P (world famous since ages ago), the lushness of the wilderness (and some peoples back yards), Pavlova (hahahahaha), the cost of Auckland houses, the phenomena of the bach, cicadas, and maybe even the fantastic, yet rarely seen, kiwiberries. I really liked them! :)
    Overall an interesting list, funny how a country so close as Australia can be so different. There really is great variety in the world :)

    • Hey G, yeah the lushness is something…when I visit Adelaide I always get a shock at how brown and flat it is in comparison. Pavlova? Well….I just couldn’t go there ;) Cicadas ok in small doses…sometimes they drive me crazy! Kiwiberries? huh? never heard of them.

  2. Lovely post Erin – made me feel a little homesick!! There are so many great things about New Zealand. I am grateful for the time I had there.

  3. Wow, So many reasons to love New Zealand.
    I’d love to go on a holiday there one day, The setting for LOTR has also furthered my want to go there, its so pretty :)
    Great post.

  4. Feijoas – how I wish we had them here. I wonder why we don’t?
    We can get hokey pokey but not that yummy fruit.
    When I was a child we lived in Auckland, I sailed on the Waitamata Harbour,
    swam at the Pernall baths and went to movies in Queen st (the civic cinema)
    it has stars in its ceiling.
    I was little I believed.
    Geat post…

    • Jane! It is a funny world. It’s lovely you have memories of Auckland. There is a kind of similar fruit in Australia…(had them at my nanna’s house..country SA) called Strawberry Guava. They are small red berries, but similar in texture to feijoas.

  5. This was really cool to see. I purchased a book this summer on character education to read with my students when we go back to school and the majority of the story takes place in New Zealand. It’s called Passport to Courage by Elizabeth L. Hamilton.

  6. My list is extremely similar. I should do this one on my blog. :) But I definitely have to mention the Tui bird song. I love the sound of the Tuis!!

  7. I am a Canadian massage therapist planning on making New Zeland or Australia my home…I have to endure another year in the cold north before I make the journey, but this certainly makes me want to embark now! Any suggestions as to which place I should lean towards?

    • Sheesh, that’s a tough question. I’m Australian by birth so having lived in both countries, I’d say it’s a tough call. There are difference for sure. If it comes down to money, you’d probably do better in Australia….salaries generally higher..but depending on the city, the cost of living is too. Having said that, life’s not all about money and in both countries you can experience a great way of life. Whichever you chose, you can always travel fairly cheaply to visit the other side of the ditch. Good luck.

  8. Oh wow…Simply stunning.
    Better than the official tourism website that’s so very cluttered.

    Question: I’m planning my first ever vacation with my wife to New Zealand in October in a campervan. Hard-earned savings….LOL. We want more of your ecstatic scenic nature than bustling traffic.

    So, which would you recommend me to go to: Northern island or Southern island? I can only choose one.


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