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Activities

Night skiing at Coronet Peak

Few people find themselves out in the mountains at night, so quite apart from the skiing, just being on the slopes under the stars is an unusual and affecting experience. Read the story . . . 

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Natural attractions

Lake Tekapō: shimmering beauty

By day, the view’s pretty spectacular – the arid splendour of the Mackenzie Country dominated by Aoraki Mount Cook. But you really want to be here when it gets dark...  Read the story . . . 

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Mauao Mount Maunganui: holiday hotspot

The proper Māori name of Mauao – or ‘the Mount’, as most New Zealanders tend to call it these days – has a certain poetry that ‘Maunganui’ (‘big hill’) does not. Read the story . . . 

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Natural attractions

Mount Taranaki: picture-perfect peak

Taranaki is about as close as you can get to the ideal of volcanic beauty – almost perfectly round, its nearly symmetrical cone rising to a pointed summit, with a single crater. Read the story . . . 

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Ōrakei Kōrako: thermal wonderland

There are still reminders scattered about the Taupō district of the subterranean forces that produced its mighty, first-century eruption and subsequent lake. Read the story . . . 

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Natural attractions

Otago Peninsula: prodigious wildlife and a bona fide castle

If ever you should tire of the splendours of Dunedin, explore the Otago Peninsula, extending from the city to the northeast, to the southern headland of the entrance to the harbour. Read the story . . . 

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Port Waikato: where river meets sea

Those unfamiliar with New Zealand geography are often surprised to find the Waikato River, which they first met at Taupō, cropping up again and again as they drive north. Read the story . . . 

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Activities

Queenstown: the sky’s the limit

You feel pretty brave, standing there on the edge, your toes dangling in the void, the river moving lazily 100 metres below. Read the story . . . 

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Natural attractions

Adventure time: Rere rock slide

Throw yourself onto your belly on your boogie-board at the top of the slide and hang on for an exhilarating, wet and wild ride to the bottom. Read the story . . . 

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Activities

Rotorua: hot pools

From fumaroles and mini geysers to steaming stormwater drains, Rotorua has hot water and boiling bogs to burn.  Read the story . . . 

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Natural attractions

Te Mata Peak: Hawke's Bay icon

From Te Mata Peak, on a clear day, you can see the whole of Hawke’s Bay laid out before you – up to Māhia Peninsula in the north and the rugged hills behind the coast to the south. Read the story . . . 

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Activities

Whakarewarewa Valley

Picturing the transition from their homeland to the decidedly sub-tropical rigours of New Zealand, you can imagine the attraction of Whakarewarewa for the first Polynesian settlers. Read the story . . . 

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Natural attractions

Tongariro Alpine Crossing

The Tongariro Alpine Crossing offers an insight into just why the park is rated an international treasure and listed as an UNESCO World Heritage Site. Read the story . . . 

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Activities

Adventure time: Rotorua rafting

The upper reaches of the Kaituna River are pretty and placid enough. But then you hear rumours of 'the Big One'...  Read the story . . . 

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Activities

Whale watching: close encounters on the water

The Hikurangi Trench off the coast of Kaikōura is home to a wealth of deep-sea marine life, including orca, blue and humpback whales.  Read the story . . . 

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Things to do

The not-so-distant summit: day hikes to mountain tops

Mountain climbing doesn’t just have to be for the experienced or those inclined to take risks. There are plenty of spectacular summits in New Zealand that can be reached with little more than the right provisions, a propensity for physical exercise and common sense. Read the story . . . 

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