New Zealand Landscape
New Zealand, a particularly remote country. A trip that is often dreamed of also because of its natural diversity. Between glaciers, volcanoes, mountains, islands, national parks, I must say that the New Zealand Landscape is majestic.
“New Zealand is weird. I mean, it does not seem of this earth, not to me. It really is like something made up”. Peter Heller
Are you planning a trip to the Down Under country? If yes, let’s discover New Zealand Landscape together!
New Zealand Geography
The first thing to know about the New Zealand Landscape is that this small natural paradise consists of two islands. On the one hand, the North Island or the Smoking Island because of its many volcanoes.
On the other side, we find the South Island, nicknamed the Jade Island, which refers to this pretty stone with green hues. Finally, many islets closer to Antarctica are added to New Zealand’s territory. The total area of NZ is 270,000km².
The North Island, with its 115,000km², is home to three-quarters of the population; it is also where 85% of the Maori population lives.
In contrast, the South Island, with its 155,000km², is home to only one-quarter of the people due to its wilder landscape.
Regarding the climate of New Zealand, it should be noted that the seasons are reversed compared to Northern countries because of its geographical location in the southern hemisphere.
Therefore, the oceanic configuration of New Zealand gives it a relatively temperate climate with frequent but often short-lived rains.
Located on the South Island, Lake Tekapo is a magnificent New Zealand landscape. What fascinates visitors about this lake is that its color changes with the light.
Additionally, its geographic location along the State Highway 8 makes Lake Tekapo a staple in the Down Under country. Indeed, the landscapes offered by Lake Tekapo with the magnificent mountains that surround it contribute a lot to the popularity of this place.
This, like most of the surrounding lakes, comes from the melting of glaciers upstream. The sesame glaciers are at the origin of the particular turquoise color of the lakes of the region.
Additionally, by sliding on the rocks, the glaciers created a kind of rock dust that gave it this color when mixed with water.
Lake Tekapo is also used for the production of electricity. Thanks to its dams, the South Island produces more than 55% of the electricity consumed in NZ.
Franz Josef Glacier
The Franz Josef Glacier reflects the richness of the New Zealand Landscape. This unique place stretches 12 km long and 19 km wide from the Tasman Sea.
It is not often that you will be able to witness landscapes of tropical forests and glaciers simultaneously.
The glacier has continuously operated in advancing and retreating phases.
However, since 2008 the glacier has been retreating at a dizzying rate due to climate change. So don’t hesitate to visit it before you lose this opportunity!
Lake Taupo is the largest in the North Island and demonstrates the beauty of the New Zealand Landscape. According to a Maori legend, the lake is the heart of Maui’s fish.
Maui is a half GOD from Polynesian mythology which is believed to be the origin of the birth of the North Island. One interesting fact about Lake Taupo is that it has one of the purest waters globally.
Another interesting fact about the place is that the lake is located in a substantially circular depression created following a volcanic eruption that emptied the magma chamber located under the crater, commonly called the caldera.
Mount Tongariro and Rapingo Desert
To fully experience New Zealand Landscape, you need to know more about its significance in Maori culture. Legend has it that initially, four volcanoes made up the park.
But one day, the mountain Ruapehu, married to Mount Taranaki, yielded to the advances of Mount Tongariro.
The two mountains, Taranaki and Tongariro, fought an uphill battle, and after its defeat, Mount Taranaki retreated to the west coast.
Even today, this site is sacred to the Maori, who honor the three volcanoes in the park. Additionally, to the east of the park, you will find the famous Rangipo Desert.
A large are at hat is totally different from the national park with its dense forests. The Rangipo Desert offers a splendid view of the region’s volcanoes.
Milford Sound, in Maori Piopiotahi, is a fjord in the land of the Down Under. This splendid New Zealand Landscape is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Milford Sound juts out about fifteen kilometers inland, in the heart of the Southern Alps, the surrounding mountain walls can reach over 1,200 meters of vertical drop.
Additionally, there is a famous route that leads to Milford Sound from Te Anau.
It is a magnificent 117km road of pure happiness. The first 50 km run along the lake, after which you will gradually enter the mountainous landscapes.
Located 70 km from Queenstown, Wanaka is a small seaside resort of 7,500 inhabitants at the end of the gigantic eponymous lake.
The exceptional landscapes of mountains and lakes surrounding the city of Wanaka make it a destination of choice for lovers of outdoor activities.
The town is less busy than Queenstown, but it makes the perfect base camp for exploring the surrounding area. Lake Wanaka, the Haast Pass, and Mount Aspiring National Park are excellent choices for hiking.
A true capital of adventure, Queenstown is a New Zealand Landscape to see without hesitation.
Located on the shores of Lake Wakatipu, the beauty of its landscapes, but above all the many activities on offer, are sure to attract crowds.
Indeed, it is a town that looks like aski resort, set between the mountains, bordered by a magnificent lake.
The city is full of activities of all kinds, hiking, skiing, summer to bogganing, jet boating, in short, there is something for everyone. Queenstown is a small mountain town that is very pleasant to walk around.
A cable car takes you to the skyline, from which the view is magnificent. Additionally, many young people gather at the beach to enjoy the sun setting over the lake at the end of the day.
Picton New Zealand
Near Nelson, you’ll find Picton, a small port town. The city is quite friendly and ideally placed for visiting the Marlborough area. It is famous for its dry climate, the famous Marlborough Sounds you cross by ferry and its vineyards.
Another attraction of Picton is its cinema which is located in the middle of an aquarium. Indeed, you buy your tickets at thea quarium counter, and you cross pools of aquatic animals to access the room.
Additionally, you will find several shops, restaurants, bars, and gas stations in the city.
New Zealand Landscape is so diverse that it cannot leave you indifferent. A trip to the Maoris’ country is something you’ll remember for therest of your life.
So, just grab your passport and camera and go discover one of the most beautiful and unique places on planet earth.