New Zealand For Free!
Heading Down Under? Odds are you probably just bought the most expensive plane ticket you’ll ever buy in your life. The good thing is; there are SO many amazing things to do in New Zealand and best of all, a lot of them are free! Here are 10 of the free things you can do in NZ.
1. National parks
There are more than a dozen national parks in New Zealand and that’s not even counting the 2 dozen marine reserves! Odds are you’ll always be near at least one of those locations; especially if you’re spending time on the South Island so make sure you plan some time to go back to nature when you’re in the world’s youngest country!
2. Fox and Franz Joseph glaciers
Why would you miss the opportunity? You have nature, wildlife and the chance to see glaciers that can easily compete with Iceland’s world-renowned glaciers. Not only that, but they are so easily accessible, it would almost be a shame to miss out on the experience if you spend any time on NZ’s South Island.
3. Southern Scenic Route
That South Island sounds pretty insane for nature lovers, right? It only gets better if you head towards the bottom of the Island to drive the Southern Scenic Route. If rainforests and beaches aren’t enough to make you want to take the drive, the wildlife should do you in. Oh and did I mention the Petrified Forest of Curio Bay?
4. St-Paul’s Church(es)
A “free places to see” list is rarely complete without at least one church but Wellington does it better; it offers a striking contrast in architecture with both Old St Paul’s church, a typical Gothic-style church and the more modern St Paul’s Cathedral. While the names may be similar, the churches themselves could hardly be more different from one another and a stop to both of them helps highlight the architectural differences time brought upon churches.
5. City to Sea Bridge
Both a regular pedestrian bridge and an untraditional public-displayed work of art, the City to Sea Bridge gives you a unique view of the famous harbour of Wellington while you cross from Queens Wharf to Oriental Bay.
6. Downtown Wellington
Granted, you will probably find yourself tempted by one of the many stores, cafés or restaurants but simply walking around the downtown area of Wellington or sitting on a bench to watch people, read a book or take a quick break is sure to give you a boost of positive energy. Not only is the area beautiful, it also remains somewhat quiet and relaxing, even though it becomes busy during business hours.
7. Mt. Eden & One Tree Hill
2 more volcanoes to see on the North Island of NZ. Extinct volcanoes, of course, and the best part is from Auckland, they are really just a short drive away. Not only that but you can actually drive up both of them, which means if you aren’t a fan of climbing or walking up the side of a volcano, you can still enjoy the breathtaking views of the city and its harbours.
8. Mt. Maunganui
If walking to the top of Mauao, a dormant volcano of the North Island, isn’t reason enough, the fact that Mount Maunganui overlooks beaches of white sand and offers climbers a unique view of Tauranga Harbour should convince nature lovers to make the 232 meters climb.
9. Mt Cook
Another Mount, but this one offers a completely different experience than the others. While the icy valleys can be walked for free, Mount Cook offers excursions that are sure to raise your pulse and with kayaks, helicopters, 4WDs and ski planes to choose from, it’s safe to say that there’s a little something for everyone.
10. Surfing in Tauranga
While Australia is famous for its great surfing spots, Tauranga is definitely New Zealand’s answer to the land of OZ. The calm, laid-back atmosphere is sure to help you relax, if the beaches of white sand and a paradise-like beauty that rivals the French Riviera hadn’t already worked their magic. As if it needed to be any more inviting; North Island’s Tauranga is located in the Bay of Plenty region and with a name like that and its sheltered location which offers a perfect climate for anyone who wishes to head down to the beach.