Like many a Christmas spent in the Southern Hemisphere, you’ll be trading winter for summer and all of the good things that come with the warmer weather. Cold beer, warm sunshine and jandals (flipflops). Whether you are are visiting the North or the South Island of New Zealand, you will find it offers something for everyone at Christmas time.
1. Kaikoura – Surf, Sun and Sand
Kaikoura Bay has been described as the ruggedest, prettiest and most serenely beautiful holiday destinations in the world where you can encounter whales, seals, dolphins and albatross. Surrounded by picturesque mountains and offering sunbathing on Christmas Day, it is as far from a traditional Christmas with snow and eggnog as you’ll get. Take a boat or kayak to catch the sight of some of the most majestic marine life and enjoy the eco-tourism accommodations on offer.
2. Lake Wanaka – Adventure
Positioned not far from Queenstown is the tranquil setting of Wanaka. Explore the crystal clear lake by jetboat, kayak or throw a line in and see how lucky you are. You can also try your hand at skydiving and canyoning if you are feeling more adventurous. You’ll find accommodation to suit every traveller from beautiful B&B’s, luxury lodges and backpacker hostels. In keeping with the active holiday theme, bikes are available for hire to get you around town or take a taxi if you need some rest.
3. Marlborough – Food and Wine
New Zealand produces some of the best wine in the world and at the top of the South Island you will find the Marlborough region which is famous for it’s Sauvignon Blanc. With over 40 cellar doors to visit and wine tours available, you’ll experience some first-class restaurants along the way.
4. Matamata – Lord of the Rings fan
If the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit are high on your Christmas list, then a visit to the Hobbiton movie set is perfect for you. Take a guided tour of the 44 hobbit holes and learn how it was all created. Matamata also offers the North Island’s highest waterfall, Wairere Falls, plummeting a long 153m to the bottom. Observe the scenery from the walking track and view the spectacular valley from the lookout.
5. Auckland – Everything and More
If you are limited for time on your holiday to New Zealand, Auckland offers all of the above in the one place. Sail, surf or swim in the sun and if it’s shopping you are after, you have definitely come to the right destination. With it’s great food, wine and diverse arts and culture, you won’t have time to relax if you want to accomplish everything this dynamic city has to offer.
Discover your sense of adventure or meander amongst the vineyards when visiting New Zealand for Christmas. It truly has experiences to please everyone and when your friends and family receive their Christmas cards this year, they will wish they were there too.