Published On: Sat, Aug 6th, 2022

18 Important Things You Should Know About New Zealand

Things to Know About New Zealand

There is a great deal that one may find out about the way of life in New Zealand. The indigenous Maori people gave New Zealand its name, Aotearoa, which translates to “The Land of the Long White Cloud.” There are, in fact, a lot of such clouds over the country.

These complement their long, white beaches and their long, white mountains quite nicely. We have compiled a list of the most essential information that every person who is traveling to New Zealand for the first time should be aware of, including lingo, sheep, hobbits, and sandflies.

1. Less Population

If you don’t think other humans make for a very interesting company, New Zealand might be the place for you. There are only about 4.8 million people living in a country that has an area that is approximately 20,000 square kilometers larger than that of the United Kingdom.

Compare this to the 66.5 million individuals that currently call the UK their home. In addition to this, more than 86% of New Zealanders live in metropolitan areas, making the experience of traveling to rural places somewhat lonely. Some would interpret that as meaning “lonely,” while others would see it as delightfully “people free.”

Those who wanted to visit New Zealand from Singapore should apply for an online New Zealand visa for Singapore citizens.

2. A Lot of Sheep in New Zealand

sheep in new zealand

On the other side, you’re stuck where you are if there are sheep around. They chew the grass and considerably outnumber their human masters across the terrain of New Zealand, which is covered in what looks like fluffy white clouds scattered across the entire country.

That’s true, there are around six sheep for every single resident of New Zealand. The overall population of these woolly critters is close to 30 million, which means that if there were a sheep rebellion in New Zealand, the locals wouldn’t stand a chance; they’d receive a good bleating.

3. Unique Accent

When someone first moves to New Zealand, they could struggle to understand the local accent. Within the space of five words, a Kiwi can make themselves sound American, Australian, or South African. Forget everything you’ve ever been taught about the vowel sounds used in that language if you’re planning on moving there.

Because an ‘I’ is pronounced more like an “uh,” the phrase “fish and chips” is shortened to “fush and chups.” The letter e, on the other hand, tends to sound more like the letter I which can lead to a great deal of confusion. The word “bed” sounds like the word “bid,” “ten” sounds like the word “tin,” and the word “deck”… well, you get the point.

4. Interesting Slangs

You will not be required to learn a new language in order to live in New Zealand; nevertheless, having a working knowledge of some Kiwi jargon may be useful. There are a lot of unusual words and phrases being thrown around right now.

The name “pleasant wrap” has been given to cling film, which gives the impression that working with it is a lot more enjoyable than it actually is. In New Zealand, a refrigerator is called a “chilli bin,” vacation home is called a “bach,” flip-flops are called “jandals,” and the middle of nowhere is called the “wop wops.”

You’re not only talking about cheese and milk when you say you’re going to the “dairy”; rather, you’re referring to the local convenience store. The most essential thing to remember is that when someone says “yeah-nah,” they are not being indecisive; rather, it is just a very casual way of saying “no, thank you.”

5. New Zealand Discovered Late

The country was the very last part of the world for the human race to come across and explore. We were under the impression that we had settled all available space, but then some East Polynesians went on a canoe excursion and discovered two enormous islands teeming with helpless birds.

What a lucky discovery by the human race! According to the findings of archaeological digs, New Zealand did not see its first inhabitants until somewhere between the years 1250 and 1300.

That occurred more than seven hundred years ago; but, in terms of history, that’s ridiculously late. These East Polynesians would eventually become the indigenous people of New Zealand known as the Maori. They arrived on the island approximately 300 years before the white men did.

Check out these most beautiful and must visit glaciers in New Zealand.

6. Meet Ordinary People

People who now identify as Maori did not always refer to themselves in this way. They were members of several different iwi, or tribes, including Ngpuhi and Ngti Porou, among others.

However, after Europeans (first the Dutch, then the British) set foot in New Zealand, the indigenous people had to find a means to distinguish themselves from the white invaders in order to survive. Therefore, they came up with the term “Maori,” which translates to “ordinary.”

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Mori is recognized as one of the country’s official languages, and nowadays, 14% of New Zealand’s population is considered to be “ordinary” people. You should be aware that the letter ‘wh’ is pronounced with a ‘f’ sound in Mori place names in New Zealand. For instance, Whakapapa is actually pronounced as Fakapapa.

7. It’s Okay To Go Barefoot

Barefoot in New Zealand

We are all aware that shoes are nothing more than deplorable prisons for the feet. They are unpleasant to smell, they can cause blisters, and nobody enjoys the challenge of deciding which pair of shoes to put on at any given time.

The answer proposed by the Kiwis is to just avoid wearing any. It is not uncommon for residents of New Zealand to walk outside of their homes barefoot, and this behavior is regarded as totally acceptable there.

People will walk around completely barefoot and carefree in public places like supermarkets and cafes. They don’t seem to have a worry in the world.

Check this guide on how to get a New Zealand visa for Portuguese citizens.

8. The Weather is Notoriously Difficult to Forecast

New Zealand Weather

The climate of New Zealand is quite dissimilar to that of the neighboring continent of Australia, despite the proximity of the two countries. Not only are the temperatures significantly more moderate than they are in Oz, but it is also feasible to experience all four seasons within the span of a single day.

This phrase was coined by those who enjoy overstating things and are known as “drama queens.” They genuinely mean that it can be bright one minute, and then it can rain the next, which is something that every Brit should be accustomed to.

9. They have a Breach in the Ozone Layer

Because we absolutely need the protection that the Earth’s ozone layer provides from the dangerous rays of the sun, we made the decision to create a huge hole in it. Sadly, the people of New Zealand and Australia are the ones who are having to foot the bill.

The ozone layer is significantly thinner in that part of the world, which means that whenever the sun is out, there is an excessive amount of UV radiation.

10. Incredible Scenery Everywhere

new zealand landscape

New Zealand would most likely emerge victorious in a beauty contest for countries if one were held. It is so stunning that it is almost frightening. The entire nation is beautiful, and around one-third of it is reserved for use as national parks and other forms of protected land.

That eliminates the possibility of it being developed into hotels and parking lots in the near future. On the North Island, you’ll find Wai-O-Tapu, which is known for its psychedelically colored hot mud pools.

Meanwhile, the South Island is home to the Milford Sound fjord, which is known all over the world. New Zealand is home to a diverse landscape that includes snow-capped mountains, verdant forests, expansive lakes, and sandy beaches.

11. Crystal Clear Lake in the World

Crystal Clear Lake New Zealand

What is it that people search for most when they visit a lake? If there is no transparency, then you won’t be able to find anything in the lake. The National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research in New Zealand has determined that New Zealand’s Blue Lake is the cleanest lake in the world.

They are not trying to promote a particular lake or anything like that. Blue Lake, which can be found in Nelson Lakes National Park on the island’s South Island, boasts visibility that can reach up to 80 meters. That is virtually identical to water that has been distilled.

12. You are Never Far From the Beaches

New Zealand Bikini Beaches

In New Zealand, you are never more than 128 kilometers (approximately 80 miles) away from a beach, and this proximity is constant at all times. Obviously, if you’re walking the distance of 80 miles, it might as well be 800 miles, while driving the distance in a car takes only about an hour or so at most.

This makes it quite convenient to go to the coast in case of an unexpected emergency. Just be careful not to get eaten by the sharks, which sound quite similar to Australian sharks but pronounce their vowels slightly differently.

13. Watch Out For Hobbits

Hobbits New Zealand Lord of The Rings

King Kong, Avatar, The Chronicles of Narnia, and of course, The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit franchises have all been filmed in New Zealand. The country is known for its breathtaking landscapes and diverse wildlife.

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Those New Zealand settings are just too tempting for filmmakers to pass up using in their works. Over the course of its history, tourism related to The Lord of the Rings has contributed more than $200 million to New Zealand’s economy and continues to be one of the country’s most lucrative industries.

People from all over the world travel to New Zealand to see the filming locations that were used by Peter Jackson. These places include the fictional settlement of Hobbiton, which is actually a working sheep farm, and the Tongariro Alpine Crossing (the one Frodo and Sam walked over to reach Sauron). Being a dork is perfectly OK over there.

14. Watch Out For Those Sandflies!

In The Lord of the Rings, you never see any of the characters having to deal with sandflies, but in real life, these winged pests are a major source of annoyance all around New Zealand. There are 19 different species of sandflies in New Zealand, but only three of them are known to cause human bites. However, these three species are found over practically the whole country, particularly on the South Island and along the West Coast.

15. The Kea Birds are a Lovable Nuisance

Kea Birds

We spoke about how the helpless young kea birds are vulnerable to being eaten by possums, but we didn’t add that the adult kea birds may be just as mischievous as the young ones. Except it eats cars, not possums.

Alpine parrots native to New Zealand are notorious for their destructive behavior toward automobiles, which includes ripping off windshield wipers and tearing off the strips of rubber that cover window panes.

If automobiles aren’t on the menu, they’ll meddle with pretty about any object that’s been left unsecured, and they won’t think twice about stealing food if they have the chance.

16. Kiwifruit can be Traced Back to China

The kiwifruit did not originate in New Zealand, despite the country’s name being attached to it. We have all been duped by a piece of marketing that is around half a century old. Because it was first discovered in China, this green fruit with white fuzz on it was initially referred to as the Chinese gooseberry.

A woman named Mary Fraser transported some seeds for the Chinese gooseberry all the way from China to New Zealand in the year 1904. By the year 1910, New Zealanders had successfully grown their first crop of Chinese gooseberries.

17. Gender Equality is Important

gender_equality

In September of 1893, New Zealand was the first country in the world to grant women the right to vote, making it the pioneering nation in the movement for women’s suffrage. It would be close to a decade before any other country adopted the practice (Australia in 1902).

The determined advocacy of Kate Sheppard and her fellow suffragettes was substantially responsible for the momentous decision that New Zealand made, and as a result, her portrait appears on every New Zealand ten-dollar bill (on the reverse, there is a gorgeous blue duck).

In addition to this, New Zealand is the only country in the world where women hold all three of the highest positions of power; in 2006, the Prime Minister, the Governor General, and the Chief Justice were all women. Sisters are taking matters into their own hands.

18. Rugby is Quite Popular

Rugby New Zealand

It would be impossible for us to write an article about New Zealand without including rugby in some capacity. Rugby is a popular spectator sport in New Zealand, which involves large men kicking an oval-shaped ball around a field.

In the year 1870, a New Zealander returned from a trip to England and proceeded to instruct all of his friends in the sport. Around 30 years later, the All Blacks were formed, and within a decade, they were visiting England while completely dominating the English at their own game.

After more than a century, the All Blacks are still the most dominant team in the sport, and they start every international match with the now-iconic battle dance known as the “haka.” The fact that most competitors are unable to devise a strategy that can defeat the All Blacks is undeniably terrifying for everyone involved.