Category Archives: New Zealand

How To Explore Places Like Never Before: NEW ZEALAND

Experience the Bright Lights of Waitomo

Waitomo – Glowworm Caves

WHAT: Take a boat ride along the unique underground limestone formations of the Waitomo region which stand as one of New Zealand’s most inspiring natural wonders.

WHERE: The southern Waikato region of the North Island, 12 kilometres northwest of Te Kuiti.

WHY: The Waitomo glowworm, Arachnocampa luminosa, is unique to New Zealand. The spectacle of thousands of these creatures radiating their unmistakable luminescent light across a vast array of limestone which is over 30 million years old is unforgettable.

HOW: Contact a Kiwi Specialist at info@compacttravels.com

VISIT: www.namastenewzealand.com – Your Indian Connection to New Zealand

 

Walk on an Active Volcano

White Island

 

WHAT: Explore the inner crater of New Zealand’s only active marine volcano – White Island.

WHERE: 49 kilometres off the coast of Whakatane.

WHY: White Island is one of the most fascinating and accessible volcanoes on Earth. As New Zealand’s only active marine volcano, scientists worldwide are attracted by its unique features. Walking on White Island is like walking on another planet – virtually no vegetation survives the harsh acidic environment inside the crater walls. Instead, lush beds of yellow and white sulphur crystals grow amongst the hissing, steaming, bubbling landscape.

HOW: Contact a Kiwi Specialist at info@compacttravels.com

VISIT: www.namastenewzealand.com – Your Indian Connection to New Zealand

 

Watch the Sea Come to Life at Kaikoura

Humpback Whale at Kaikoura

 

WHAT: The seaside settlement of Kaikoura offers year-round viewing of magnificent creatures of the sea. Because of the abundance of plankton, the local marine habitat is popular with an array of animals, including seabirds, seals, dolphins and whales.

WHERE: Midway between Christchurch and Picton on the rugged east coast of New Zealand’s South Island.

WHY: When a mighty Sperm Whale flaps its tail at you, you will not forget it in a hurry. Also, Kaikoura’s unique combination of ocean and mountain landscapes offers stunning coastal alpine scenery and a host of eco-tourism oriented activities such as whale watching, dolphin swimming, nature walks and much more!

HOW: Contact a Kiwi Specialist at info@compacttravels.com

VISIT: www.namastenewzealand.com – Your Indian Connection to New Zealand

 

Immerse Yourself in the Heritage of a Māori Marae

Heritage of a Māori Marae

 

WHAT: In Māori society, the marae is a place where culture can be celebrated, the language can be spoken, tribal obligations can be met, customs can be debated and important ceremonies can be performed.

WHERE: In Rotorua as part of an organized tour experience.

WHY: Experiencing the hongi (formal nose-to-nose Māori greeting), seeing the deeply moving song and dance performances and eating from a traditional underground hāngi (oven) will bring you closer to New Zealand and its people.

HOW: Contact a Kiwi Specialist at info@compacttravels.com

VISIT: www.namastenewzealand.com – Your Indian Connection to New Zealand

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Is NEW ZEALAND the right holiday destination for you?

√ Variety of Food √ Value for Money Warm Hospitality

 

But that’s not all…

 

SPECTACULAR NATURAL BEAUTY


When is the best time to visit New   Zealand

Summer and winter temperatures vary by about 10ºC over most of the country, making New Zealand an ideal holiday destination all year round. New Zealand has four distinct seasons; Spring (September to November), Summer (December to February), Autumn (March to May) and Winter (June to August). New Zealand is an extremely popular summer destination, both for overseas and domestic visitors. In summer there is plenty of sunshine, and activities in and around the water include rafting, snorkelling, diving and kayaking. You will find snow on the mountains in winter and excellent skiing. Away from the mountains, New Zealand winters are mild and temperatures generally do not fall below freezing.

When is the best time to go hiking in New Zealand?

Tracks such as the Abel Tasman, Heaphy and Queen Charlotte Sounds Walkway located at the top of the South Island can be walked all year round. The tracks at higher altitudes however, such as the world famous Milford Track, Kepler and Routeburn are closed in the winter due to snow. You must book through the Department of Conservation’s Great Walks Booking Office to walk the Milford and Routeburn tracks, which are open between October and April.

Should I go on a guided walk or  an independent walk?

If you like hot showers and other home comforts, you should book a guided walk. But if you are a seasoned hiker and do not mind ‘roughing it,’ then try independent walking, carrying your own pack and staying in basic huts or tents.

EXCELLENT INFRASTRUCTURE


Which types of accommodation are available in New Zealand?

New Zealand offers a wide range of accommodation options from top-class hotels, exclusive lodges, motels, guest houses and farm-stays to holiday parks and backpacker hostels. There is also the freedom to discover New Zealand at your own pace in a campervan. Two, four or six berth vans are available to rent, offering all the comforts of home including a shower, refrigerator and microwave.

Where are the international airports located in New Zealand?

New Zealand’s international airports are at Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. Some flights from Australia also land at Hamilton, Palmerston North, Queenstown and Dunedin.

Can I use my credit cards/ATM cards in New Zealand?

All major international credit cards can be used in New Zealand and Travellers Cheques are accepted at hotels, banks and some stores. If your credit card is encoded with a PIN number, you will be able to withdraw cash from ATMs situated at banks and shopping centres throughout the country.

OFFBEAT ADVENTURE


SHWEEB

The world’s first human-powered monorail racetrack – the Shweeb velodrome – opened at the Rotorua Agrodome in 2007. The Shweeb consists of a 200-metre overhead rail track circuit with a series of fully-enclosed pods that hang below the track. Each pod carries one rider. Up to five vehicles can be loaded onto each track so that riders can race one-on-one or in teams. Riders can reach speeds of 60-70 k.p.h. Interestingly, the Shweeb velodrome in Rotorua is also the prototype for a form of mass transport that is being marketed internationally as an environmentally-friendly solution for short-distance urban journeys.

BLOKART

The Blokart is a wind-powered speed machine. Created, designed and manufactured in the North Island’s Bay of Plenty region, the Blokart is a three-wheeled land yacht, dubbed the world’s “ultimate sailing experience.” Created as a wind-powered toy that is portable and easy to use for people of all ages and abilities, the Blokart can be folded down into a lightweight, suitcase-sized bag that is easily transported and can be used almost anywhere from beaches to parking lots and even on ice.

Several New Zealand locations offer Blokarting activities – including Muriwai Beach on Auckland’s west coast, and the world’s only custom-made Blokart speedway at Papamoa, near Tauranga.

ZORB

An attempt to walk on water became the inspiration to create the Zorb – a giant ball that rolls down hills at up to 50 k.p.h. Invented in Rotorua, thrill seekers are strapped into the hollow plastic ball – surrounded by a thick air cushion – and then sent off on an exhilarating downhill spin. The popularity of Zorbing has lead to franchises flourishing internationally in Slovenia, Ireland, Guam, Thailand, the Czech Republic and Argentina. Adventure seekers in New Zealand can experience Zorbing at the renowned Agrodome.

SAFETY & SECURITY


Are their safe activities for  children in New Zealand?

New Zealand’s parks and large areas of unspoilt wilderness are ideal places to expand your children’s appreciation of wildlife and the outdoors. Horse riding, snow activities, whale watching, fruit picking and wildlife centres and zoos are just some of the choices available.

If you are visiting the larger centres, you will find a range of themed attractions including Rainbow’s End in Auckland, Splash Planet in Hastings, Marine Land in Napier and the International Antarctic Centre in Christchurch. Te Papa, an interactive national museum, has a range of activities for the whole family to enjoy.

Is it safe to drink the water in New Zealand?

New Zealand cities and towns have excellent water supplies and in all cases tap water is fresh and safe to drink. Water from rivers and lakes should be boiled, chemically treated or filtered before drinking to avoid stomach upsets.

Are there any poisonous animals in New Zealand?

New Zealand has no snakes or dangerous wild animals, making it safe for visitors to enjoy outdoor activities.

ENVIRONMENTAL RESPONSIBILITY


SUSTAINABILITY

Sustainability in New Zealand is increasingly being recognised as good practice and the government has made moves toward this goal.

The New Zealand government has enacted legislation to enshrine sustainability principles in law. The Resource Management Act was passed in 1991 and was a landmark piece of legislation, being the first to adopt the principle of sustainability. In 2003, the government announced the Sustainable Development Programme of Action. Private efforts by individuals and organizations are also highlighting the importance of environmental sustainability and renewable resources.

CONSERVATION

The Department of Conservation administers the majority of the publicly-owned land in New Zealand that is protected for scenic, scientific, historic and cultural reasons, or set aside for recreational purposes. More than 80000 square kilometres – nearly 30 percent of New Zealand’s total area – is administered by the department.

There are 14 national parks, 20 forest parks, about 3500 reserves and about 610 square kilometres of protected private land that have been set aside for scenic, scientific or ecological reasons. The department also has responsibility for the preservation and management of wildlife, and has a role in management of the coastal marine area from the Kermadec Islands to Fiordland.

CLIMATE CHANGE

The relevance of climate change in New Zealand has become increasingly apparent in the scientific records, in New Zealand’s participation in international treaties and in social and political debates. Climate change is being responded to in a variety of ways by civil society and the government. An emissions trading scheme has been established from 01 July 2010 wherein the energy and liquid fossil fuel sectors have obligations to report emissions and obtain carbon credits.

VIBRANT HERITAGE


HAKA

Haka is a traditional dance form of the Māori of New Zealand. It is a posture dance performed by a group, with vigorous movements and stamping of the feet with rhythmically shouted accompaniment. Haka may be understood as a kind of symphony in which the different parts of the body represent many instruments. The hands, arms, legs, feet, voice, eyes, tongue and the body as a whole combine to express feelings relevant to the purpose of the occasion. Haka are performed for various reasons: for amusement, to welcome distinguished guests or to acknowledge great achievements or occasions.

WAITANGI TREATY GROUNDS

The Waitangi Treaty Grounds, overlooking the Bay of Islands, is New Zealand’s pre-eminent historic site. On 06 February 1840, the Treaty of Waitangi was first signed between Māori and the British Crown.

Highlights of the Treaty Grounds include the Treaty House which is one of New Zealand’s oldest and most visited historic homes, Te Whare Runanga which is a fully carved Māori Meeting House that is representative of all Iwi (regional tribes) in New Zealand and Ngatokimatawhaorua which is one of the world’s largest Māori ceremonial war canoes.

ART DECO

Beautifully preserved 1930s architecture is Napier’s special point of difference, which draws Art Deco and architecture enthusiasts from around the world. The rebuilding period after the 1931 earthquake coincided with the short-lived and rapidly changing Art Deco era and the Great Depression, when little “mainstreet” development was being undertaken elsewhere. As a result Napier’s architecture, with its Māori motifs, is strikingly different from any other city in the world.

BOLLYWOOD DREAMS


New Zealand has been given a big ‘thumbs up’ by Bollywood as Sonam Kapoor and Imran Khan feature in I Hate Luv Storys (2010) which was partly shot in Queenstown.  Once filming was complete, Sonam and Imran took time off for a day of adventures including skydiving, jet boating and a helicopter flight to a mountain-top gourmet lunch.

“The landscape is spectacular and very diverse. We drive short distances and the dramatic scenery changes from steep mountains and lakes to green fields and river canyons. The people are extremely warm and friendly. And I love the food.” – Sonam Kapoor – Actor

“Absolutely everywhere you go, the place is sparklingly clean, the wildlife nature is just completely untouched and it’s really nice to see that people care that much about their country,” – Imran Khan – Actor

My film ‘I Hate Luv Storys’ needed this – picture perfect, postcard locations. No matter where you put the camera, the shot always looked stunning!” – Punit Malhotra – Director

CRICKET MANIA


New Zealand Tour of India, November 2010 Schedule

TEST SERIES

1st Test

04 November  – 08 November

Sardar Patel Stadium, Motera, Ahmedabad

2nd Test

12 November – 16 November

Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, Hyderabad

3rd Test

20 November – 24 November

Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium, Nagpur

ODI SERIES

1st ODI

28 November

Nehru Stadium, Guwahati

2nd ODI (Day/Night)

01 December

Punjab Cricket Association Stadium, Chandigarh

3rd ODI (Day/Night)

04 December

Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, Hyderabad

4th ODI (Day/Night)

07 December

M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bangalore

5th ODI (Day/Night)

10 December

MA Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai

WORLD CUP FEVER!!!

The 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup will be co-hosted by India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. Fourteen national cricket teams, including New Zealand and India, are scheduled to compete. The first match will be played on 19 February.

HOLLYWOOD SPOTLIGHT


THE  LORD OF THE RINGS  TRILOGY (2001, 2002, 2003)

Choosing the location of Middle Earth for The Lord of the Rings trilogy was an easy decision for Peter Jackson, the films’ director and producer. Jackson and his team scoured New Zealand for the most beautiful and diverse areas. The rolling hills of Matamata became Hobbiton, while the volcanic region of Mt. Ruapehu transformed into the fiery Mt. Doom where Sauron forged the Ring and Queenstown – New Zealand’s adventure capital – was the setting for numerous scenes including the Eregion Hills, and the Pillars of Argonath.

THE LAST SAMURAI  (2003)

Much of the filming of the The Last Samurai centred on the hillsides of the Uruti Valley in Taranaki, which was remodelled slightly to imitate Japanese rural life in the 1860s. Mount Taranaki, New Zealand’s most-climbed mountain, turned on a stunning performance as Mount Fujiyama.

AVATAR (2009)

New Zealand technology and expertise developed the new generation 3D special effects for the phenomenally successful movie that was partly shot in New Zealand. Many Kiwi designers, cast and crew were also involved in the production. Most interestingly, the Māori language was the inspiration for the Avatar alien language!

PRIVATE ESCAPES


LAKE WANAKA

Lake Wanaka’s spectacular location at the foot of the Southern Alps with the wilderness of the Mount Aspiring National Park nearby makes it a magnet for outdoor lovers the world over.

Similar to nature and wildlife reserves, Lake Wanaka’s concept of a Lifestyle Reserve attracts those wanting to experience the ultimate Kiwi lifestyle. It combines spectacular scenery with a genuine sense of community, responsibility and passion for life. The concept also highlights Lake Wanaka’s long term commitment to ensuring the quality of experience is never compromised.

AORAKI MOUNT COOK

New Zealand’s highest mountain at 3754 metres, Aoraki Mount Cook is the hallmark of the famous Southern Alps. You can enjoy 4WD safaris, boating on the glacier lakes, horse treks, fishing, scenic flights with snow landings and numerous walks and hikes. During the winter, guided ski treks onto New Zealand’s longest glacier, the Tasman, is a popular activity and a unique Mount Cook wedding location.

The alpine village of Mount Cook, located in Aoraki Mount Cook National Park, provides a range of accommodation from an international style hotel to backpackers hostels and camping sites.

PAIHIA

Rich in culture, history and natural resources, Paihia is the perfect stepping stone into the Bay of Islands, and a wonderful place for people of all ages to visit. Known as the jewel of the magnificent Bay of Islands, with shimmering safe waters and superb beaches, there are plenty of recreational activities offered amongst the 144 islands: sail, fish, swim, dive, snorkel, charter a launch or paddle a sea kayak around the islands.

ENGLISH LANGUAGE


English is an official language of New Zealand, along with Māori.  New Zealand slang however, has developed over time from a diverse mixture of backgrounds which may or may not sound familiar to you. All of the listed words and phrases are used with regularity throughout New Zealand and should give you a better understanding of what your Kiwi mates are really tryin’ to tell ya!

Arvo – afternoon

Bach – holiday home

Banger – sausage, as in bangers and mash

Barbie – barbecue

Big smoke – large town or city

Bit of dag – hard case, comedian, person with character

Bloke – man

Brickie – bricklayer

Bring a plate – bring a dish of food to share

Cardi – cardigan

Chocka – full, overflowing

Chook – chicken

Chips – deep fried slices of potato but much thicker than a french fry

Chuddy – chewing gum

Cuppa – cup of tea, as in cuppa tea

Dodgy – bad, unreliable, not good

Dunny – toilet, bathroom, lavatory

Duvet – quilt, doona

Flicks – movies, picture theatre

Greasies – fish and chips

Handle pint of beer

Happy as Larry – very happy

Hard yakka – hard work

Hosing down – raining heavily

Jandals – thongs, sandals,

flip-flops

Jumper – sweater, jersey

Knackered – exhausted, tired, lethargic

Long drop – outdoor toilet, hole in ground

Serviette – paper napkin

Togs – swimsuit, bathing costume

Tramping – hiking

Wop-wops – situated off the beaten track