Free Travel Newsletter : June 2010
Written by Steph Kendall
Brought to you by New Zealand Tourism Guide www.tourism.net.nz.
Congratulations to Melody Patterson, this month's lucky Free Travel Newsletter subscriber, winning "The Ultimate New Zealand DVD".
This winter sees two very different festivals taking place - during June, Maori New Year is marked throughout the country with cultural festivals celebrating 'family, history and bones'. Whilst down in the South Island, Queenstown locals celebrate the winter season through races, games, entertainment, hijinks and parties alongside 60,000 visitors. Read more about these festivals, a seriously challenging hiking option and some warm winter tour options...
Find out about:
- Matariki (Maori New Year), June 2010
- Queenstown Winter Festival, 25th June - 4th July
- Off the Beaten Track to... Waitakere Ranges
- Warm Tours for Winter
- New Zealand Fast Facts
Matariki (Maori New Year), June 2010
A significant winter event in New Zealand is the rise of the Matariki (or Pleiades) star formation in the heavens, which marks Maori New Year. During a ten-day festival period in June, Maori tribes celebrate their unique place in the world as they are joined by local and international visitors at family-friendly cultural festivals throughout New Zealand... (more)
Queenstown Winter Festival, 25th June - 4th July
36 years ago the party started and the locals of Queenstown are still sharing celebrations for start of winter with visitors from all over the world. With races on the mountains and in the town, drinks and food events, street parties, fireworks, jazz, comedy, Mardi Gras, family fun, concerts and a huge dance finale to cap it off, the Queenstown Winter Festival is now New Zealand's biggest winter party... (more)
Off the Beaten Track to... Waitakere Ranges
If your passion is for hiking and you fancy taking on a challenging hike that goes down a very muddy beaten track, then why not follow the Hillary Trail? This four-day trail across the Waitakere Ranges epitomises the sense of adventure and personal achievement of Sir Edmund Hillary himself, and though it's not exactly Everest, hikers be warned, it's not easy (especially in winter)... (more)
Warm Tours for Winter
Most New Zealanders would not think of themselves as 'hot stuff', but the country itself lying on the southern rim of the Pacific Ring of Fire is, in geographic terms, one very hot property. Numerous geothermal features are here in New Zealand including volcanoes, hot springs, geyers and volcanic lakes. Many of these are clustered together in the country's North Island and there's no better time than the winter to take a 'warm' tour up north. Simply choose from one of the many volcanic and geothermal tours available and don't forget to cosy up afterwards with a cup of cocoa by the fire!
View more about volcanic and geothermal tours in New Zealand.
New Zealand Fast Facts
Did you know that New Zealand has three official languages – Maori, English and New Zealand sign language? Māori or te reo Māori (also commonly referred to as 'te reo' meaning the language), is the language of the indigenous population of New Zealand, the Maori. Most government agencies have bilingual names and signs and an interpreter is on hand at sessions of Parliament should a Member wish to speak in Maori. In 2006, a survey estimated that 4.2% of New Zealand's population were Maori speakers.