Also know as the adventure capital of the world, New Zealand is a dream destination for many travelers. You will find so many cool things to do in New Zealand. Whether you are a film addict, an adrenaline seeker or someone who wants to take a relaxing break, this list has something for everyone. It can be overwhelming deciding on what to do so we have rounded up the most extraordinary things to do in New Zealand. Have fun! 🙂
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Things to do in New Zealand: 1 – 20
1 – Embark on a voyage of discovery at the Bay of Islands
Located in Northland region of New Zealand’s, the Bay of Islands encompasses even 144 islands. It is one of the most popular destinations for vacations in the country because of its stunning beauty of beaches, pristine reefs, active marine life, waterfalls, forests, history. Bay of Islands is heaven for beach and water activities lovers!
2 – Get your breath taken away by the scenery of Fiordland National Parks
Fiordland National Parks, situated in the southernmost part of South Island, is remarkable for its stunning fjords, spectacular waterfalls, and snow-capped peaks. It covers an area of some 4,600 square miles (12,000 square km) and is one of the largest national parks in the world. There are limestone caves, Sutherland Falls and one of the highest waterfalls in the world! Access to the park is limited mostly only to hiking trails and the lakes, so that you can fully enjoy this nature’s masterpiece!
3 – Admire the pure natural beauty of Milford Sound
Within Fiordland National Park lies Milford Sound, which is New Zealand’s most stunning natural attraction. The magical combination of ink-dark waters, mountain peaks, and magnificent dramatic forest-clad cliffs must be seen to be believed. Visiting Milford Sound is a must-do on every New Zealand itinerary!
4 – Discover New Zealand’s natural highlights at Waitomo Glow Worm Caves
Deep underneath the hilly landscapes of North Island, you can find fantastic cave lit with glow worms. The Waitomo Glow Worm Cave is home to thousands of glow worms that light up the cave ceiling like a starry night sky. You are probably wondering why these creatures are glowing? We won’t spoil anything – see by yourself and get to know everything at Glow Worm Caves!
5 – Walk along Lake Wanaka and find the Lone Tree
A lonely tree has grown at the south end of Lake Wanaka. With the South Island’s stunning Southern Alps in the background, a solitary tree creates a beautiful picture of loneliness. Visit it when the sun is low in the horizon, and there’s an abundance of colorful low lights. As there are no directions signs to the lonely tree, you will have to do your own research to find it.
6 – Walk, hike or climb on Franz Josef and Fox Glacier
Situated on the west coast of New Zealand’s South Island, the Franz Josef and Fox glaciers are one of the most stunning sights to be found anywhere in the world. This region of New Zealand cannot be missed! The glaciers themselves are pretty incredible, but stunning alpine landscapes, lakes, lush rainforests and impressive coastlines are stunning as well. What you need is only to decide how do you want to experience this magnificent creature of nature: by walking, hiking or climbing?
7 – Be amazed by the pure color of Lake Tekapo
On the South of New Zealand lies Lake Tekapo. It sets apart from other lakes by an amazing turquoise blue color. The pure color of the lake’s water, wildflowers at the backdrop of snow-capped peaks turn this place into something magical.
8 – See everything that is hiding under Te Waikoropupu Springs water
In Golden Bay on New Zealand’s South Island, you will find Te Waikoropupu Springs (“Pupu Springs”). At Pupu Springs, there are some of the clearest water anywhere in the world! The horizontal visibility of the water in the area has been measured at an average of 63 meters so that you can discover all the secrets of the Te Waikoropupu Springs bottom from above!
9 – Experience Hobbiton Movie Set
Hobbiton exists! It is a Real Place in Matamata, a small agricultural town in the heart of the Waikato region! Listen to spell-binding tales of how Hobbiton came to be, take a look at Bag End, where Frodo and Bilbo’s adventures began and get lost among the hobbit holes!
10 – Refresh your soul and body at Castle Hill
Located on the South Island, Castle Hill is a high country station, a large farm area for grazing of sheep and cattle.
The Dalai Lama visited Castle Hill in 2002. The landscape and his spiritual experience inspired him so much that he called the area a “Spiritual Center of the Universe.” The hill is also one of the favorite climbing and bouldering spot for New Zealand’s rock climbers!
11 – Be amazed by colors formed by the geysers at the Wai-o-Tapu
The Wai-o-Tapu Park, located in Taupo Volcanic Zone, is the place where you can admire a fantastic palette of the colorful pools. The geysers create several colors combination of green, yellow, orange, even a fluorescent one including Gatorade.
These colors are formed naturally from the interaction of minerals and gases, sets out an outstanding view. This natural beauty is definitely a must of all the things to do in New Zealand!
12 – Feel the hair on your head at Electrum
You can find the largest Tesla coil in the world on a farm near Auckland. It is stunning to see Electrum in action. It sends up to three million volts into the surrounding air, when the coil discharges. You can hear an earsplitting crackling sound and feel the hair on your head standing on end!
13 – Take a quick jaunt to the Tunnel Beach
Located off the Dunedin to Brighton coastal road, Tunnel Beach allows access to a secluded and sheltered beach at the base of the cliffs. For a short walk and some stunning coastline in Dunedin, head for Tunnel Beach and enjoy the beauty of its rugged rock arches, caves, and sandstone cliffs!
14 – Visit a Tree Church
The Tree Church is made of almost nothing but trees! Situated in Ohaupo, a heavenly 100-seat chapel set among a 3-acre landscaped garden, the church boasts walls made of living trees planted around an iron frame.
15 – Admire art works at Gibbs Farm
Located in the beautiful Kaipara Harbour, north of Auckland, Gibbs Farm is an expansive open-air sculpture park. You’ll be able to freely roam in the park. Be introduced to selected artworks by Auckland Art Gallery’s art experts and come face-to-face with some exotic animals!
16 – Discover the pancake rocks
Near Punakaiki at Dolomite Point, there are the pancake rocks, a heavily eroded limestone area where the sea bursts through several vertical blowholes. These rocks are a real wonder of nature and are the most visited natural attraction on the West Coast! You cannot miss this sight!
17 – Discover the mysterious Moeraki Boulders
The Moeraki boulders are located on Koekohe Beach. Each rock is up to two meters high and weighs several tonnes and was formed about 65 million years ago. The Boulders are a trendy spot for photographers and with good reason!
18 – Walk to the Putangirua Pinnacles
Situated on the way to Cape Palliser, the Putangirua Pinnacles are earth pillars formed by the erosive forces of rain and floods. Putangirua Pinnacles are the most incredible rock formations you will ever see! Put your walking shoes for a day trip or even bring the family camping here!
19 – Hike to the Frying Pan Lake
Frying Pan Lake is always piping hot at 113 to 131 degrees Fahrenheit (about 50-60°C). Located in Waimangu Volcanic Rift Valley, Frying Pan Lake is a perfect hike trail with fantastic views of the thermal pools and hot stream. Usually, visitors say that this is one of the most stunning places in New Zealand!
20 – See the Windswept Trees at The Slope Point
Aside from a few sheep, no humans or other animals live here. The slope is the southernmost spot of New Zealand’s South Island. The wind here is so intense and relentless that the trees are twisted, warped and forever bent along the direction the wind blows! The views and the atmosphere are truly mystical here. It will make you believe that you are at the edge of the world.